“The Debts of Dictators “
So,I’ve just learned that Rwanda’ President Paul Kagame auctioned part of Rwanda by selling for “eternity” the Bugesera International Airport to the Emir of Qatar(60% of stakes ).
I immediately remembered a documentary watched while at AFRODAD Summer School, edition 2019 in Pretoria: “The Debt of Dictators “.
The one-hour documentary film shows how dictators contract loans with international financial institutions like World Bank (WB, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and others and consequently the price poor citizens pay to repay. It’s horrible and odious. For example, people say that South Africa is rich, right ? Did you know how much the apartheid government contradicted for its army, police and other white owned infrastructures?
All those loans were contracted to repress black South Africans. The apartheid debt is now being expensively repaid by the poor South Africans. It was heartbreaking to see that there are even some communities who wish to get infected with HIV/AIDS just to benefit from social assistance as the ANC Government is repaying billions of dollars as part of apartheid loans, annually.
Now the question is : why should financial institutions keep pumping money into governments like the government of Rwanda while they are aware that the same money is being used to repress and torture citizens and opponents ? Who will repay it as even the poor children are born with debt?
Why do IMF , World Bank and some Governments keep funding a Government which is funding in return with billions of US dollars big western soccer teams like Arsenal and PSG while the money given is intended to fund grassroots wellbeing? Is this normal and fair ?
Why dictators prefer foreign loans instead of domestic resources mobilization to fund national economies ? Part of the answer is that if citizens directly pay in taxes for their economic development , their governments will be accountable and citizens will demand for accountability, and therefore participate in management of their countries.
While loans are easy to get, the said documentary contends that some of the international bankers are like lawyers, they even support criminals , dictators as long as their interest is secured no matter who will repay the price. Therefore, loans benefit the industrialized countries and keep developing countries poorer and poorer as they reimburse their debts huge interests. Now you can understand who help who and why.
Hummm ! Haven’t you said that President Kagame is the smartest African leader who is miraculously developing Rwanda ? My African friends, he is rubbing with western bankers and Asian sultans and Emirs. Is he developing Rwanda or giving it as bank guarantee ? Who will repay his debt, not poor Rwandan taxpayers, years after him ? Remember some of those sovereign loans are paid back even after 4 decades or more and affect the most vulnerable (women and children) when those who are answerable will have passed away like in the case of South Africa today.
Rwanda’s national airport sold to Qatar.
Africans , wake up and stop selling your continent, engage in win win cooperation which benefits the poor.
Source: Appolinaire Nishirimbere (facebook page).