Africa Does Not Expect ‘Curse of Riches’ -Boakai Tells World Leaders, Calls for New Paradigms

MONROVIA – Providence’s endowment of the African Continent with exceedingly enormous natural resources of all kinds is yet to be translated into economic liberation, social prosperity and political stability. Though civilization started unfolding on the so-called “Dark Continent” ahead of other peoples, a continent inhabiting one of the hugest population blocks of the world, Africa continues to be used as a harbor of less humans and not regarded peers in the international arena to respect. This paradox, others call “curse of riches”, is an issue that President Joseph Boakai takes the podium as world leaders debate the theme “Food and Mineral Resources” at the Korea-Africa Business Summit. He confronted his African colleagues and other international stakeholders about this oxymoronic development paradigm, which development experts over the ages have nearly unsuccessfully grappled with. As THE ANALYST reports, the Liberian leader has been imploring the summit’s participants to elevate Africa’s development focus, mainly food security policies, to new levels of innovation and collaboration as to avoid ‘curse of riches”.

President Joseph N. Boakai has been addressing the Food and Mineral Resource Summit being held in Seoul, South Korea, at which time he reminded his colleagues that the population of Sub-Sahara Africa, with huge mineral reserves and vast unpopulated agroland, is being relatively violated.

He said rather pointedly that Africa no more expects what some may referred to as “curse of riches”, stating that despite the natural endowment of Africa, there are global hunger index reports indicating that sub-Saharan Africa is the region most affected by food insecurity.

The Liberian leader, who told his contemporaries that the focus of his address at the summit was to discuss the issue of food and mineral security and how they are meant for the development of nations and the existence of their peoples.

“It is estimated that Africa is endowed with 6.5 trillion-dollar worth of natural resources,” he said, adding that Sub-Sahara alone is holding close to 30 % of the volume of critical mineral reserves and a significant that percentage of the mineral global reserves, with Africa also having 65% of the world’s unpopulated agro-land.

President Boakai stated that the population of Africa has relatively been violated of the earth exploitation, mainly the needed ecology such that despite the blessings possessed in some of the places swap adversely, the global hunger index reports that sub-Saharan Africa is the region most affected by food insecurity.

He said Liberia’s case is a clear view, with decades of exploitation of the country’s natural wealth not having developmental effects upon its people.

“This is why the Theme of this period and the summit’s general theme must call us to action by strengthening cooperation and harnessing our collective experience, knowledge, technology and industry to improve food and mineral security globally,” President Boakai said further.

“Our cooperation with Korea would mean future transformation which must emphasize true mineral resource governance and evidence-based policy,” he said. “This we believe will help unfold a decision that will ensure that the natural wealth of our people create propitious life for them to stride.”

President Boakai therefore admonished his fellow leaders that their discussions at the summit must address the crises of food and security and the challenges of mineral exploitation.

“We must emphasize initiatives including employing medic-technology and innovations to fight malnutrition, hunger, and climate change to include infrastructures that will embrace not just to ensure increased production but also promote agriculture,” he added.

According the Liberian leader, mineral security can be guaranteed when leaders adopt policies that ensure transparency, accountability and fairness, and how mineral exploration is governed in their countries.

“Value addition will come and environmental concerns, including compensation for both immunities, deprived of their land by concessions, because of informed initiatives to strengthen member security, reduce poverty and avoid conflict,” he explained.

He called for the mitigation of risk of mineral and food security, stating that “when we collaborate – governments, the corporate world and civil society – we will find the best solution.

“More importantly, as a nation endowed with vibrant creation and multi-critical minerals and having worked with Koreans, Korean innovation, technology, guide and industry, we will be impacting billions of people worldwide on two of the key issues that are impeding developments – food insecurity and governance of mineral exploitation.”

The president said: “We must now work and seize the opportunity to find the best solution to strengthen food and mineral security and secure the future of generations to come.”

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