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General News of Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Source: XYZ

Sustained dev’t alone can’t get Africa out of poverty – Lord Boateng

The UK’s first mixed race Cabinet Minister, Paul Yaw Boateng, says sustained growth alone cannot uproot Africa from the abyss of extreme poverty.

Lord Boateng, a member of the British Labour Party, and former Member of Parliament for Brent South told a conference on inequality in Accra that, “Despite real progress in the fight against poverty during the last decade, poverty on this continent remains unacceptably high and the pace of reduction unacceptably slow.”

According to him, “almost one out of every two Africans live in extreme poverty today.”

He adds that, “On the most optimistic of scenarios, with growth rates at a level that has never historically been achieved before, that rate will fall to between 16 and 30 percent living in extreme poverty by 2013.”

Lord Boateng, however, pointed out that, “Under any plausible scenario, most of the world’s poor people by 2030 will still live in Africa.”

“So it’s clear that sustained growth is a necessary but not sufficient reality to meet the challenge of accelerating poverty reduction in Africa.”

“The region’s high inequality weighs down on the growth elasticity of poverty estimated at around -0.7 as compared to -0.2 in the rest of the developing world excluding China and it hinders the conversion of growth into poverty reduction,” Lord Boateng noted.