Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol.1, No.4, Winter 2002232NEPAD and Its Achilles HeelsDorina A. Bekoe*Each passing year reinforces Africa’s grim statistics of a continent in which many states areovertaken by poverty and conflict. In 2001, to cite just one statistic, 72 percent of the countriesin Africa (39 of 54) were classified as low income – meaning that gross national income wasbelow $745 annually.1Equally dismal, conflict and instability in all the sub-regions continue tospread refugees. The United Nations High Commission for Refugees reports 6.3 millionrefugees, asylum seekers, internally displaced people, returnees and other vulnerable groups, outof a total of 22.3 million globally, existed in Africa in 1999.2Against this background, Africanheads of states proposed and adopted the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD)to provide solutions to stem Africa’s continuing economic and political devastation. WithNEPAD, African heads of state promise adherence to tenets of good political and economicgovernance to engender Africa’s development. Essential to the NEPAD plan, and in return forcompliance with democratic and free market norms, is the restructuring of the partnershipbetween Africa and the developed world, particularly the Group of Eight industrialized counties(G8).While these objectives have also been conditions for financial assistance between Africanand donor agencies in the past - such as in Structural Adjustment Programs (SAP) and thePoverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSP) - NEPAD seems to distinguish itself from past plansdevised to solve Africa’s development problems in three ways. Firstly, it demonstrates political
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