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Scrutiny
  
Cost of conflict
Africa lost billions in war
15/11/2007

Benjamin Franklin once stated, ‘Never has there been a good war and bad peace.’ Never think, a war, no matter how necessary, how justified it is, remains a crime. It can only bring destruction and seize life. Who can better describe than the Africans who have experienced massacres and civil wars that have destroyed millions – both life and property.

A recent study by an aid agency, Oxfam International, revealed that 16 years of wars have cost Africa an estimated $284 billion which is roughly equal to the amount that major donors aided the continents during the same period. Twenty-three nations in the continents shrank by an average of 15% losing an estimated $18 billion annually which could be easily used to fund education, health and diseases like HIV-AIDS or tuberculosis which kills millions in Africa every year. A tiny nation, Burundi, which could grow by 5.5% has shrank by 1.1% during its 13 year long civil war, which had cost them $5.7 billion. The story is similar for most countries of Africa.

Africa is perhaps the richest continent in term of natural resources. It could have prospered far more than Asian and European nations if it could prevent disastrous wars. It’s high time for them to take lessons from the old adage which says, ‘God helps those who help themselves.’ Beyond this – it is their choice.

By:- B&E
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