Topic – African Crises
Sleepwalking into a potential catastrophe
Africa remains to be the poorest and least-developed continent in the world and along with this, they face the brutal reality of various crises. It’s the second-largest continent and the richest in terms of natural resources. Now here’s a question that kicks in – Why is it that arguably the world’s richest continent in terms of natural resources has one of the world’s poorest people?
The countries in Africa are currently facing a displacement crisis. Well, what’s a displacement crisis? It’s basically where people get displaced from their homes due to persecution, conflict, generalized violence and it can even be human rights violations. A survey conducted by the Norwegian Refugee Council or the NRC shows us that in the 10 of the most neglected displacement crises in the world, 9 countries belong to Africa. Some of them are Cameroon, Congo, Nigeria, South Sudan, Central African Republic.
The governments in the countries spread across Africa portray high levels of incapability. Most of them seek international support from countries like the UK and France for boosting their economy and military power to fight terrorism. Corruption charges on officials and unfair electoral practices have brought democracy down. 1 in 4 people in Africa pay bribes to access services. Zimbabwe and South African governments can act as role models here as their doing better than the other nations.
The new trend in this world is obviously climate activism but it is only concentrated towards the northern hemisphere, the suffering of millions in Africa goes unnoticed. At least 1 million people are facing starvation as Madagascar’s drought keeps worsening. People eating termites and clay cause of which UN says acute malnutrition has almost doubled in 2020. 1 million are going into a famine in the 21st century and that’s hard to digest. Malnutrition of children has always been the problem for the whole of Africa and there’s no solution yet. Cultivation not being possible in such harsh conditions leaves no hope for the farmers.
Terrorism has been the latest concern as Islamic terror groups like Boko Haram and Al-Shabab are growing in the region. The headlines in Africa in recent history have been the cruel and deadly acts of terrorism. From Somalia to Mali and Nigeria to Mozambique, the continent has repeatedly witnessed grisly acts of violence targeting its civilian populations. Six years ago, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 schoolgirls, the kidnapping of the ‘Chibuk girls’ as they are called sparked international outrage, but more than a hundred girls are still missing. School abductions in Nigeria are saddening when children become the target. Both the Islamic State group and its rivals in al-Qaeda have taken a strategic decision to make Africa their new priority after suffering setbacks in the Middle East.
Migration weakens the continent even more as many leave the continent and move to Europe or neighboring countries due to distress. Currently, at least 15 countries are at war on the continent and this is directly affecting the people. Citizens including women and children have to leave their homes and migrate to other countries. In this attempt many lose their lives, women go through sexual assault and millions get stranded without any food. The part of Africa, the Sahel, is the transit route for huge numbers of migrants making their way northward to Europe.
International attention is what Africa is lacking. People do voice out their problems, but they reach a situation where they are forced to leave their homeland. This rich continent is just losing out on its value due to all these factors. Effective measures must be taken to bring the whole continent to a stable condition by both international communities and at the ground level. The truth is that Africa has become a blind spot for Humanitarian crises to the entire world.