Sovereignty matters africa donors and the aid relationship goals

Foreign Aid in Developing Countries | OMICS International

sovereignty matters africa donors and the aid relationship goals

ing aid relationships as a structural component of the global system; review Systemic Issues: Managing Conflicting Goals and Capacities. 2 Brown, W. ( ) 'Sovereignty matters: Africa, donors and the aid relationship'. Sovereignty matters: Africa, donors, and the aid relationship . commonly understood' in the prelude to his discussion My purpose here is. To cite this article: Synne Movik (): The Politics of Aid: African Strategies for Dealing with range of broadly defined goals that dilute responsibility. . an effective overview of existing literature on donor–recipient relationships, highlight - . chant issues, such as the very nature of sovereignty itself.

The various organizations have united to call for a new Foreign Assistance Acta national development strategy, and a new cabinet-level department for development. The video "Africa for Norway" was a parody of Western charity initiatives like Band Aid which, he felt, exclusively encouraged small donations to starving children, creating a stereotypically negative view of the continent.

The parody video shows Africans getting together to campaign for Norwegian people suffering from frostbite by supplying them with unwanted radiators. These issues arise from targeting inefficacy and poor timing of aid programs. Food aid can harm producers by driving down prices of local products, whereas the producers are not themselves beneficiaries of food aid.

Unintentional harm occurs when food aid arrives or is purchased at the wrong time, when food aid distribution is not well-targeted to food-insecure households, and when the local market is relatively poorly integrated with broader national, regional and global markets.

The use of food aid for emergencies can reduce the unintended consequences, although it can contribute to other associated with the use of food as a weapon or prolonging or intensifying the duration of civil conflicts. Also, aid attached to institution building and democratization can often result in the consolidation of autocratic governments when effective monitoring is absent. Food aid usually has to be transported across large geographic territories and during the transportation it becomes a target for armed forces, especially in countries where the ruling government has limited control outside of the capital.

Accounts from Somalia in the early s indicate that between 20 and 80 percent of all food aid was stolen, looted, or confiscated. On top of that 30 percent, bribes were given to Croatian forces to pass their roadblocks in order to reach Bosnia.

These shipments of humanitarian aid helped the rebel leader to circumvent the siege on Biafra placed by the Nigerian government. These stolen shipments of humanitarian aid caused the Biafran civil war to last years longer than it would have without the aid, claim experts.

Humanitarian aid workers have acknowledged the threat of stolen aid and have developed strategies for minimizing the amount of theft en route. Academic research emphatically demonstrates that on average food aid promotes civil conflict.

Namely, increase in US food aid leads to an increase in the incidence of armed civil conflict in the recipient country. However, it is important to note that this does not find an effect on conflict in countries without a recent history of civil conflict. Community-driven development CDD programs have become one of the most popular tools for delivering development aid.

Casualties suffered by government forces as a result of insurgent-initiated attacks increased significantly. These results are consistent with other examples of humanitarian aid exacerbating civil conflict. Related findings [59] of Beath, Christia, and Enikolopov further demonstrate that a successful community-driven development program increased support for the government in Afghanistan by exacerbating conflict in the short term, revealing an unintended consequence of the aid.

Dependency and other economic effects[ edit ] One of the economic cases against aid transfers, in the form of food or other resources, is that it discourages recipients from working, everything else held constant. Targeting errors of inclusion are said to magnify the labor market disincentive effects inherent to food aid or any other form of transfer by providing benefits to those who are most able and willing to turn transfers into leisure instead of increased food consumption.

Food aid programs hence take productive inputs away from local private production, creating a distortion due to substitution effects, rather than income effects. Poor timing of aid and FFW wages that are above market rates cause negative dependency by diverting labor from local private uses, particularly if FFW obligations decrease labor on a household's own enterprises during a critical part of the production cycle. Net Aid Disbursements to Ethiopia: As enshrined under the FDRE constitution, there is a doctrine of separation of powers and check and balance horizontally between the three organs of government, namely the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary and separation of powers vertically between the federal government and the regional governments.

However, there are arguments that ran into and against issues of institutional autonomy and popular sovereignty and their ramifications for laws, rules, and regulations governing government-people relations in the country. It is hard to deny that the culture of democracy has been, more or less, practiced in Ethiopia mainly in the post period.

However, what makes democratization process in the country debatable is whether it has reached to the level expected by the Ethiopian people taking into consideration domestic realities for example, popular awareness and economic strength and transformations and speeds of change worldwide. Some people argue that democracy, which must be seen as a process, has been so far getting improved in the country; it is, therefore, a step in the right direction [ 25 ].

This does not mean, however, that there are no challenges to it, including lack of the culture of political tolerance, democratic governance, popular awareness, and the prevalence of poverty and the like [ 25 ].

Further, the government has brought to the Ethiopian peoples about relative peace and stability, and has ensured a constitutional and democratic system through which each nation has enjoyed its right to self-administration up to secession, use its own language, use and develop its own culture and so forth [ 1825 ].

If it is, indeed, independent, does not the role of the Prime Minister in the appointment of Board members as is stipulated under Art. The major challenge is lack of institutional autonomy and of separation of powers and checks and balances between and among core government organs; the judiciary is not still independent, the executive is not subordinate to the parliament and dominates everything in the state [ 27 ].

The Ethiopian government holds that rules, laws, and regulations of the country are usually designed thereby primarily taking into consideration the interest of the citizenry.

So, the government stresses that rules and regulations are strong in regulating or governing government-people relations in the country. For this reason, the Parliament which is supposed to reflect the interests of the Ethiopian peoples is not, arguably, entirely autonomous.

Sovereignty matters: Africa, donors, and the aid relationship - Open Research Online

Any law or proclamation enacted with actual or perceived intervention by the executive or other bodies usually skews in favour of the interest of governing elites other than the people whom policy decisionmaking and implementation processes affect. Author argue that any law that does not reflect the interest of people cannot be legitimate and relevant by any standard. However, as critics view it, enacting laws or proclamations to serve as a legal weapon in suppressing the citizens is disappointing [ 262930 ].

On the part of the government, however, it firmly maintains the argument that these laws are up to the international standard. For instance, the former Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, was, once upon a time, informing the parliament that the new anti-terrorism law has been adopted from Britain, word by word, phrase by phrase, and, if exaggerated, including full stops [ 31 ].

The influence, through various means, of the general public in the formulation of overall policies and strategies of the country is frustrating. This all suggests that clear and effective line of communications between the government and the general public are lacking. For this reason, government-people relations in the country are overshadowed by lack of clear communications at best and fear and suspicion at worst.

The implications of weak rules and regulations governing government-people relations for the country are obvious. First, it violates the principle of accountability and transparency.

All this has a significant impact on the flow and use of aid money in the country. Because, in a system where corruption is rampant, it is hard to think that democracy assistance could fully achieve its intended purposes. However, the volume and scope of democracy assistance, compared with other forms of assistance, is believed to have been insignificant in the post period. According to Dessalegn et al. One basic reason, the authors argue, is that assistance to this area is widely channeled through NGOs or civil society organizations in general.

Secondly, donors give very little attention to this area and this is reflected when they shift their concern and support from this area to other development and humanitarian issues, particularly in crises situations. The reason for this basic shift of emphasis is associated with the post-election violence and public unrest that was embarrassing for many donors.

Currently, a more formal and institutionalized democracy assistance is provided by DIP 5. Through enhancing the capacity of these institutions to be effective, sufficient and responsive in promoting and protecting the rights of citizens and through empowering citizens to be active and effective participants in the democratic process, DIP is striving to promote human rights and democracy in Ethiopia DAG, n.

And the forms of assistance to democratization process in the country include human rights and advocacy trainings, judicial sector reform and conflict mitigation6, trainings to journalists, support to political parties and electoral assistance, support to the media, financial and capacity building support to the democratic institutions, and the like.

Although insignificant, DIP assistance has achieved some outcomes. And the Democratic Institutions are by and large discharging their responsibilities thereby investigating and resolving human rights violations, corruption, and maladministration cases.

For instance, in the first half of alone, the FEACC was able to retrieve 78, m2 of land in Addis Ababa that individuals held without due process [ 35 ]. In this regard, it is indicated in the Report that Prime Minister Meles Zenawi was the first to register his assets in public? The Report [ 35 ] further pointed out that the public awareness is enhanced through the establishment of regional branches, collaborations with civil society organizations. Regarding the achievements made by the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia NEBE in the May, parliamentary elections, it is stated that the Board mobilized and registered a total number of 31, - in contrast to 25, voters registered for the parliamentary elections - 15, Out of this voter turnout, 29, However, there are some basic challenges to DIP assistance.

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These include awareness problem lack of knowledge and understanding, especially on issues of human rights and democracy both on the part of the Ethiopian people and implementing institutions ; maladministration practices; financial deficits and technical and operational difficulties like, for example, late disbursement and receipt of funds, delay in procurement, and delay of reports from the field faced by the IPs, and so on [ 1825 ].

This organization prepares and coordinates high-level consultations between the donors and the Ethiopian government and the biannual meetings of the Consultative Group for Ethiopia [ 36 ]. However, there are some critics that doubt the autonomy of regional and local governments as it appears that they are under a shadow of dangerous cloud or strict interventions from the central government [ 26 ].

To ensure that assistance is used for its intended purpose, proposal development and progress reports are provided, mainly through MoFED, to the donors [ 18 ]. In addition, assistance is not given to the IPs overnight; instead, it is provided regularly on the basis of progress evaluations till the end of the DIP programme in every five year.

Generally, DIP programme, which is afive-year assistance to the IPs, is administered to strengthening the IPs thereby evaluating their financial, organizational, and technical capacity through scheduled visits and follow ups on the basis of the above institutional framework [ 18 ].

Moreover, clear, practicable, and mutually agreed mechanisms according to which the Ethiopian government and democracy assistance partners can take measures on account of failures to materialize the terms of agreement are still lacking.

Critics do not appreciate this ideology claiming that it has failed so far and that it is hard to fuse revolution and democracy together [ 36 ]. For all practical reasons, the EPRDF is accused of being socialist-oriented since it gives much more weight to development than democratic ideals [ 31 ]. However, the author does not accept the claim that the government is completely socialist-oriented. As a matter of fact, the regime cites Asian countries notably South Korea and China as models of development strength that can be achieved through statecenter development paradigm.

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This is so in spite of its experiences in allowing, at least in principle, a democratic system - multi-partism, competitive democracy, and the like. However, this welcome initiative has been overshadowed as the ruling party has given much more weight to development activities as a prerequisite to democracy, albeit not expressed officially. In fact, the EPRDF strongly maintains that democracy and development are complementary issues that cannot be separated [ 29 ].

Nevertheless, our research findings show contrary to the official claim. This all suggests that ideology affects, in one way or another, the flow and allocation of foreign aid. Despite the fact that it has accepted some elements of liberal prescriptions, the Ethiopian government has not yet fully accepted liberal democracy. The need for negotiation in the first place comes about precisely because any aid programme requires the agreement of the recipient, because that recipient possesses sovereign independence and with it the right to agree or refuse aid programmes.

Conditionality, after all, is a means of offering incentives and threats to an independent party to persuade them to act in a certain way because donors cannot instruct them directly.

sovereignty matters africa donors and the aid relationship goals

Imperial fiat will not work in this circumstance. Sovereignty as a right to rule is therefore critical to the ability of recipient states to exercise agency within the inequalities of the aid relationship.

Sovereignty matters: Africa, donors, and the aid relationship

Tanzania as a state subsumed beneath donor influence, Rwanda as an example of a state able to retain some control over aid relations. In fact, in neither case do we see a loss of sovereignty understood as a right to rule. Rather, it is the changing use that is made of this right, under changing conditions, that lies behind their fluctuating relations with donors.

By —5, mounting dissatisfaction on both sides led to another breakdown in relations with donors. First, at no point is there any evidence that donors questioned the independence of Tanzania as a sovereign state; as noted, donors require sovereign states with which to do business. It was its initiative with the Danish government that laid the ground for a different kind of relationship with donors.

Indeed, the dissatisfaction that donors had with Tanzania up until this point was in part a reflection of the frustration they had at not being able to achieve the extent of reforms inside the country that they sought. Finally, as detailed by both Wangwe and Harrison et al. Rather, sovereignty as a right to rule underpins how aid relations have been enacted. Whether in Tanzania, where donor influence has penetrated relatively deeply, or in Rwanda where this is less the case, both remain sovereign states with the right to say no to external actors.

Authority, control, and liberal aid As signalled earlier, this analysis relies on a conceptual simplification separating issues of sovereign rights from issues of national political control. In actual political discourse, things are not quite so cut and dried. Indeed, the language of sovereignty is often deployed by representatives of recipient states in contests over national political control, including contests with donors. The argument presented here suggests that we should not take such discourse at face value.

Nevertheless, we do need to give some account as to why such contests arise and why the language of sovereignty is used. There are two points that address these questions. First, the language of sovereignty is used because it is a powerful rhetorical resource with which to contest restrictions on national autonomy that themselves threaten the bases of domestic political support for recipient regimes.

Second, the language of sovereignty is used because loss of national control over policy is perceived to undermine some of the purpose of sovereignty. However, while both points complicate the account given above, they do not undermine it entirely. Each of these aims connotes a particular, liberal, understanding of how internal authority in recipient states should be constituted and exercised.

sovereignty matters africa donors and the aid relationship goals