The Hazards of Immoral Investments in Africa Belayneh Abate

September 25th, 2014 Print Print Email Email

The African singers’ effort [1-3] to inform the world about Africa’s land robbery should be replicated and rewarded. I wish singers utilize their talents to promote humanitarian deeds like Miriam Makeba instead of using them to glamorize women’s breasts and men’s chests.

Watch out humanitarian singers! Words matter! The land snatching in Africa is NOT land grab: It is LAND ROBBERY. Although the land belongs to the people, the grabbers do not buy it from the people; they snatch it from the robbers-the slave tyrants. The slave tyrants sell the African resources for bribes, and brag about investments.

Although many have discussed the economical impact of these immoral investments, few have addressed their hazards. The hazards include immediate massive death, acute and chronic diseases including cancer, disabilities, birth defects, infertility, and mental retardation. These industry related hazards have been seen in Asia and Latin America.

After World War II, the economical and social structure changes compelled industrialized nations to expand investments in developing countries. Companies from industrialized nations rushed to developing countries in search of cheap labor and operating costs. Similarly, some developing countries competed to attract international companies. [4]

India was one of the developing nations that attracted foreign companies to invest since late 1960’s. A Chicago based corporation, Union Carbide (UCC), built pesticide producing plant in Bhopal, India. UCC’s operations were regulated in USA; but not in India. As a result, the Bhopal plant exploded on December 2, 1984, and clouds of fumes, gases, vapors and other toxins covered the land and the sky. Thousands of people died, and tens of thousands of people sustained serious injuries. The authorities tried to cover up and underestimate the dead since lives in developing countries have never been considered equal to the lives in developed nations. At any rate, the unofficial death estimates range from eight to sixteen thousands. Time Magazine called the explosion night “The Night of death”

The hazards of the Bhopal disaster were not limited to immediate deaths. The stillbirth rate soared to 300%, and neonatal mortality rate increased to 200 %. [5] Thousands of people suffered from eye, lung, brain, skin, and psychological diseases. People still die from those industrial toxins related diseases.

If these kinds of disasters occur in countries lead by elected governments that fear the voices of people, what types of disasters should we expect in Africa, where countries are ruled by irresponsible slave tyrants. What sorts of environmental pollutions should we anticipate in Africa where corruption is a norm; regulatory agencies are absent; healthcare systems are dysfunctional; and investigative journalists are treated like terrorists?

Foreign companies are salivating to invest in African precisely because they can buy the resources cheap, and they can operate under no regulations. Through these illegal, immoral and unethical operations, companies stockpile their profits; thieves amass bribes; but the African people contract industry related deadly diseases.

Africans are at risk of physical, mental and social disorders from unregulated working conditions and industrial waste disposals. In addition to injuries and displacements, Africans are at risk of developing acute and chronic diseases related to fertilizers, pesticides, solvents and other industrial processing material and waste products. Some fertilizers and pesticides cause skin, eye, brain, lung, heart, and kidney diseases including cancer. Many other farming and manufacturing chemicals are linked to abortions, still births, infertility, birth defects, mental retardation and cancers.

Some industrial chemicals dwell in the soil for decades, if not for centuries. Therefore, this unregulated bribe- based investment would further affect the health of future generations. In other words, the coming African generations will inherit the curse of death from the slave tyrants.

The heartless investors mislead naive people by showing workers wearing bright personal protective equipments (PPE) such as gowns and gloves. PPEs are ineffective for African workers for the following reasons. Firstly, PPEs need intensive training, which is unthinkable in a continent where literacy rate is dismal. Secondly, PPEs are scares in Africa; and thirdly PPEs are the least effective exposure controlling methods.

In summary, the Africans are at risk of industry related deaths, abortions, congenital malformations, infertility, mental retardation, cancer, disability and other chronic diseases. In order to control this insurmountable risk, intellectuals, religious leaders, journalists, writers, poets, singers, runners and others should expose the immoral-investment covenant between slave tyrants and greedy investors. Thank you.

End Notes: (All accessed on September 23, 2014)

1. Major African Music Artists to Perform Pro Bono for PLAD’s STOP Africa Land Grab Concert — Sunday, September 21st at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC
2. Hanisha Solomon; Africa Unite
3. Hanisha Solomon,
4. Weir, David. The Bhopal Syndrome: Pesticides, Environment, and Health. Sierra Club Books, San Francisco. 1987.
5. Eckerman, Ingrid (2005). The Bhopal Saga—Causes and Consequences of the World’s Largest Industrial Disaster. India: Universities Press. ISBN 81-7371-515-7. (about neonatal mortality rate

Similar articles:
1. Land Grab or Land Robbery in Africa?
2. The investment covenant between slaves and masters.

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  1. Alemu Gashaw
    | #1

    The article is short sighted, it amplifies only one side of the economic factor (The negative factor) but it does not mention nor factor in the great economic contributions and benefits that foreign investment or investment in general that associate with land related. Ethiopia has hundreds of thousands of square miles of land throughout the country that never has been used and capitalized on for centures, why not use these unused lands and misused and under farmed and cultivated land be used by advanced farming (investors) ?

  2. Blurred
    | #2

    Ato Alewmu Gashaw,

    1. The atricle is not short sighted. It is you who have blurred vision and/or brain. No where in this article you find that says advanced farming is not necessary. Read and read it it again.

    2. The article is not talking about economical factor at all? Have you read it or are you just jabbering what is ringing in your ear?

    It just talks about human life not economical factor.

    Thank you.

  3. aha!
    | #3

    On the economic front, the TPLF/eprdf regime is set up with crony capitalism by TPLF/Political, TPLF/EFFORT, TPLF affiliated enterprises, and foreign corporations engaged in exploitation, political and economic strangle hold of the countries resources and its people much like the ex-apartheid regime of South Africa. Unlike South Africa it also follows the totalitarianism and /or state capitalism, that denies the silent majority of Ethiopians private ownership of land anywhere in Ethiopia as one of the means of production. This paper illustrates the external aspect of that exploitation by foreign corporations particularly in terms of land/agro industry by global corporations which includes fertilizer and GMO seeds in connection with TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprises. I congratulate the author for articulating the external influence of foreign corporations not only on evicting the indigenous farmers, degrading the pristine land resources and polluting the rivers only to export the products abroad without contributing to food shortages in the country. Whereas large scale farms and plantations during HIM’s reign was performed as a cooperative projects with the Ethiopian Government and during the Derg large scale farms were run by the government to alleviate food shortages, I presume, but with the TPLF/eprdf regime, rice and other crops are produced by foreign corporations on nominal leases to export to their respective countries, which probably serves as accumulating foreign currencies in terms of export and land lease, I presume, evidenced by articles written about the form of exploitation by way of land lease to foreign corporations to foreign corporations and TPLF affiliated enterprises, while free market capitalism is not available to the silent majority of Ethiopians.

    What is probable lack is people-rather ethnic oriented government at the out set that rules by the consent of the governed, that focuses on individual right and civil right living intact the harmonious existence of the eighty ethnic groups as a strength in diversity, rather division of the land mass by major ethnic groups and developing the country along ecological regions, rather than ethnic homelands and making an input of capital and conservation practices in terms of ecosystem management approach and know how by the indigenous people themselves with foreign aid and capital directly available to the farmers to raise productivity and conserve the soil under a revitalization program of farm and range lands to benefit the people within and between the ecological regions.

  4. Destachew
    | #4

    However hollowly beautiful your self deceiving propaganda reply is, some times you should revisit your irrational thoughts and comments and its results. Beside criticism and negative opinions were the cheapest commodity there is.

  5. A. W.
    | #5

    Investors from Saudi Arabia choose Ethiopia for legal child prostitution. AlAmodi is the pimp for child prostitution and sodomizing of Ethiopians.

    Blame noone but poverty for rise of child prostitution in Ethiopia.

    All Ethiopians need to come together forgive each other for past grievances and tackle poverty . Forgiving is the key. the Meles Foundation public relations director Doctor Kassu Ilala recently released a public announcement to all Ethiopians begging for forgiveness for past shortcomings on the previous government part.According to him “All Ethiopians need to forgive and move on to bring healing to the wounded spirit of the majority.” In his statement he said “holding grudge hurts oneself more than the one that is accused of any wrong doing.”

  6. justice
    | #6

    Not even a single cent investment in Ethiopia until the current regime is removed by ANY MEANS NECESSARY. Most lands in Ethiopia and the rest of Africa belongs to tribes and communities NOT THE GOVERNMENT. LAND TO THE PEOPLE NOW.

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