Friday 29 March 2013

An Update

I`ll be back posting on this blog again very soon, but until then, keep up with me at and


Saturday 23 March 2013

Another Aid Controversy

The vexed question of overseas aid raises it`s head yet again in a recent article by an anonymous representative of Ethiopia`s Oromo people* ;

The writer refers to Ethiopia`s FDRE Proclamation 621/2009, which he/she acknowledges was "intended to impose superior regulation of charities", but goes on to argue that in practise it has meant that "party leaders decide who should receive...emergency support" .

The article goes on to say that in many cases "the authorities decide who should die."

Admirers of Ethiopia`s current regime often present it as a kind of synthesis of old-style state-centralist economy with western individualism and initiative. I can actually see where they`re coming from with that, though I doubt that in practice the "best of both worlds" approach is actually what is happening on the ground.

Leaving that aside, the article does raise questions about how NGO aid agenices can be made accountable. While many would question whether self-regulation and intitatives like The Sphere Project are really a long-term solution, it`s unclear how any form of independent scrutiny is ever to be achieved.

These are big questions with no easy answers and I don`t pretend to have any special wisdom. Hopefully, I`ll be able to return to the subject in due course.