Africa means that arguably people will be

Africa is facing issues of
incremental demographics whilst still inundated with lack of essential needs
and vital components of development such as healthcare, education,
infrastructure and the issue of slow economic growth and the need to counter
this by creating a higher sustainable economic growth and additionally, the
burden and constraint of increasing debt. 

The essay will examine the core components of the
region and the various policies that can be executed whilst pinpointing the
tendencies that could potentially aid in the development of the continent.

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The projected increase in
population means that arguably people will be living longer and/ or, birth
rates will increase significantly. However, in some countries, the birth rate
is significantly in the average as the rest of the world and this possibly is
due to education. The more learned people are, the lower the birth rate trend1.

Education is inaccessible to
most, lack of this basic need forces children to leave their homes – especially
in the rural areas to migrate to the cities – to look for employment, resulting
however in child labour on the streets and markets and often in child
trafficking. The need to turn life around leads the youth to engage in illegal
activities such as armed robberies, internet fraud amongst other desperate measures
to survive. Undoubtedly, through the Millennial Development Goals, figures show
that much progress has been made in terms of the number of pupils enrolled in
schools notwithstanding the fact out of the 67 million children out of school
43% still reside in Africa. Countries such as Ghana and Uganda implemented
initiatives such as free universal secondary education to boost the levels of
literacy amongst its young populace, albeit without the criticism that this
will yield challenges2. Initiatives such as these
must be welcomed but I cannot help but think about the failure of such policies
in the long run. The education system – which definitely will benefit the poor
– will deteriorate due to insufficient members of staff and the equipment needed
to face an ever-growing population – as the population grows so does the
classroom population. To avoid falling into the cycle of pitfalls, what can be
done is to overhaul the school curriculum and introduce one that tends to
nurture the interest of the pupil and engages and help them build character
rather than having a system which wants to only assess the child’s ability to
pass exams. The youth represents opportunity for the continents’ future as the
advent of technology is helping shape the way view the continent and beyond it.

More and more African students are studying abroad and are witnessing
innovation and entrepreneurship, most of them realise their roles within their
communities and are aiming to change the continent through leadership initiatives
and economic empowerment agendas3


International organisations
such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank arguably might
be assisting in the form of offering financial advice, structural adjustment
agendas, policy-making advice on the continent however, this does not happen
whilst also4
not undermining the Sovereignty – an important aspect if a country want to
govern themselves. But Africa does not control itself. This is a challenging
issue which keeps slowing down the development of the continent – of African countries
and also, these institutions use their position of dominance to leverage and
control development policy-making. Most of these policies have seen African
governments focus on their economies towards integration in the international
markets at the expenses of social services. How can these organization claim
they are assisting developing countries, when a country cannot decide for
itself? Most of these countries succeeded in improving the basic needs for
their citizens before these IOs undid much of the progress with their
conditions attached to the loans given to the African countries. This has led Africa
to become a hindrance to its own progression.5 In the areas of economic
and political power, despite the fact the continent being rich in natural and
human resources – Africa, albeit unwillingly, provides resources that have fueled
modern capitalism and its current stage of globalization – Africa gets the bad
deal6. Development is obviously
the end goal of African states and all the international conferences held to
find solutions to the precarious state of the continent, but it seems the
continent cannot break from a choking cycle and thus, having to depend on the
western countries and their aids. Each year the continent receives billions in
aids, most of them undoubtedly not being employed for their purpose – bad
policies implementation as to where and what the aid should be spent on-
however, this way of giving does not come free. According to a report by UK and
Africa based NGOs, there is a misconception about developmental aids. Whereas
the citizens of west believe their governments are sending aids to Africa to
alleviate poverty, these aids are used as smokescreen to conceal the “sustained
looting” of Africa.7
As more investments and aids come through, the continent should seek to develop
a legal system capable of fighting injustices and affirming the continent’s
sovereignty and, to ensure everybody gets a fair deal. Arguably, Africa is
being taking advantage of due to the lack of such infrastructures. A sound
legal system could encourage more investments into the region as companies know
there is in place an efficient judicial system with comprehensive legislative
framework regulating all sectors8.


In conclusion, the development
of Africa lays within the hand of the Africans. Despite the fact that every
nation seek development, development should be subjective. Development should
not equate growth either – the case of Africa is a prime example, there can be
growth, in the instances of growth in population and no development. It will be
a collective effort which will propel the continent to its namesake, the giant.

1 Schunemann,
J. (2017). Africa’s population
boom: burden or opportunity? – ISS Africa. online ISS Africa.
accessed 19 Jan. 2018.

2 Kavuma,
R. (2011). Free universal
secondary education in Uganda has yielded mixed results | Richard M Kavuma.

online the Guardian.
accessed 18 Jan. 2018.

3 Bush Institute, G. (2017). Africa’s Hopeful Future: A Look at
Tomorrow’s Opportunities and Challenges | Bush Centre. online Africa’s
Hopeful Future: A Look at Tomorrow’s Opportunities and Challenges | Bush Centre.

18 Jan. 2018.

4 Colgan, A. (2002). Hazardous to Health: The World Bank and IMF in Africa. online
accessed 19 Jan. 2018.

5 Ibid

6 Thandika Mkandawire, African Intellectuals:
Rethinking Politics, Language, Gender And Development (Zed Books Ltd

7Anderson, M. (2014). Aid to Africa: donations from west mask ‘$60bn looting’ of continent.

online the Guardian.
accessed 19 Jan. 2018.

8 Herbert Smith Freehills | Global law firm.

(2017). Commercial arbitration in
Africa: Present and future. online
accessed 19 Jan. 2018.