Monday, 30 June 2008

Africa Draws The Short Straw - Again...

A BBC documentary set to air in the UK on 1 July shows how British tobacco companies are targeting the youth of several African countries despite these countries having laws disallowing this and the tobacco companies having widely publicized codes of ethical marketing.

The program shows how tobacco companies use guerilla marketing to lure young people to their brand. It also shows children as young as 11 buying cigarettes and developing a life-long nicotine addiction. On a continent with 100 000 smoking-related deaths each year (this figure set to double over the next 20 years according to the World Health Organisation), this is clearly an untenable situation.

To read more go to the BBC site for this program - click here.

Why does Africa continue to be exploited by the mega-coporates of the First World? Is it simply economics without a conscience? Do those in power simply close their eyes to the explotation of a continent?

The actions of companies such as those highlighted in the BBC documentary mentioned earlier simply continue to perpetuate economic slavery on the African continent. The trade of physical bodies across oceans and indeed within Africa itself may be a thing of the past but the slavery of Africa's people to the power of the dollar continues.

It is also time for the people of Africa to draw a line in the sand and say "Enough is enough". Corruption and inefficient governance in many parts of Africa unfortunately lead to a blind eye being turned as ordinary Africans continue to suffer poverty, economic injustice and crime continue to plague our continent.

Africa - stand up!
Leaders in Africa - stand up!

Coporate power-mongers - own up!
Foreign governments - wake up!

Is this just wishful thinking or will Africa awaken from her slumber and rise to face the giants that wish to destroy her?