#COVID19: China Must Write Off Over $140 billion Debt Owed By African Countries — Oby Ezekwesili

by on April 17, 2020

Former vice president for the Africa region at the World Bank, Obiageli Ezekwesili has said that China would have to pay reparations to Africa for their failure to curtail the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an article she wrote, Ezekwesili noted that Africa is at risk having its economic gains cleared out due to the global crisis. She wrote that there is need to change the current model of assistance from developed countries to the most vulnerable as it does not deliver any real positive change in the development trajectory of these countries.

She highlighted that one of the ways to alter the fruitless model is to make the rich countries which put the vulnerable ones at risk to pay the poor countries a risk burden tax for further plunging the poor ones into crisis due to their careless activities.

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Citing China as an example in this case, she asked that they must pay damages to Africa by writing off more than $140 billion debt owed them by African countries. These debts were incurred between 2000 and 2017.

Revealing some statistics, the former minister of Education said that Africa has over 70 percent of the poorest people on earth, with over 400 million people living below the poverty line. She also said that that an estimated 20 million jobs will be lost in Africa due to the global catastrophic caused by China.

She maintained that China should own up its failure to transparently and effectively manage the COVID-19 pandemic. She said that China and the other 19 rich and powerful countries should meet with the African Union to agree on a development assistance model that will work this time around.

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