Friday, October 24, 2014

The 10 Most Corrupt Countries In The World

Photo by Daniel Garcia/AFP/Getty Images
Corruption and economic turmoil often go hand-in-hand. In western nations like the United States, and in many European countries, we often see corruption come to light as the result of whistleblowers or journalistic efforts. But in many other areas of the world, however, corruption plays a major role in fostering staggering poverty and broken economic systems in a much more blatant way.
Oftentimes, specific power structures and government architectures provide an easier means for corrupt politicians, businessmen, or military officials to exploit the system. Many governments have their roots in constitutions from generations ago, and have outgrown their current systems. Many other countries are ruled by a variety of independent tribal leaders and often lack a centralized power structure with any meaningful sway.
Transparency International developed a comprehensive list of the world’s most corrupt nations last year, and the countries that top the list probably won’t come as much of a surprise to many. The study ranks countries on a scale from 0 to 100, with zero being the most corrupt, and 100 being the least.
Of course, corruption comes in a variety of forms, so getting a precise gauge is difficult. But perception itself is a very strong tool, and can have a big effect on its own. If the study reveals anything, it’s that the world overall has a huge issue in terms of corrupt officials. By looking at the Corruptions Perception Index, along with the existing power structures and economic systems within each country, the picture does become a bit clearer. That’s why we dug a little deeper, examining the rankings for ourselves.
Although not among the top ten, we’ve included the United States on the list to give perspective as to where America ranks internationally in terms of corruption and economic strife. By Transparency International’s calculations and scale, the U.S. is sitting fairly pretty, although it’s common knowledge that there are definitely issues with how things are run in Washington. Other countries you might expect to see like Russia, Mexico, or Venezuela all have their places as well, and the full list of 177 nations can be viewed straight at the source from Transparency International.
Here are the most corrupt nations in the world, as ranked by Transparency International, with additional insight into the issues and factors plaguing each one.
Photo by Phil Moore/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by Phil Moore/AFP/Getty Images
1. Somalia
  • Corruption score: 8
  • Power structure: Almost none; “in the process of building a federal parliamentary republic” – CIA
Somalia may just be the most unstable country on the entire planet. The country has become infamous in the United States as being the setting for the Blackhawk Down incident, as well as the country’s pirates who are known to take over passing ships in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean. The country is barely held together by an incredibly loose central government, and is more accurately being run by a number of competing clans and warlords, creating lots of hostility and division.
Life in Somalia is notoriously tough. On the economic front, many people make a living from raising livestock or farming, and others from fishing. Of course, with things remaining such a mess at the top of the power structure, any long-term planning for social programs and infrastructure is difficult.According to The World Bank, only 29 percent of the country’s population has been enrolled in school, and life expectancy is only 55 years. Both of these numbers rank well-below most other countries, and provide some insight into the internal strife the country is experiencing.
Beyond these things, information on the inner workings of Somalia’s government and its economic system are scarce. That alone is rather telling, as corrupt officials may not want outsiders seeing the true picture of what’s going on inside the country’s borders.
Photo by Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images
2. North Korea
  • Corruption score: 8
  • Power structure: Dictatorship
The world’s biggest wildcard is North Korea. There is little doubt in anyone’s mind that the country is immensely corrupt, having been effectively run into the ground over the past half-century by Kim Jong Sun, Kim Jong Il and now Kim Jung Un, all of whom the country’s citizens affectionately have referred to as ‘Supreme Leader’. The CIA lists North Korea’s government as a ‘communist state one-man dictatorship’, with an estimated GDP of $28 billion as of 2009.
Notorious for having very little electricity and sending its citizens to prison camps, North Korea’s government and economy are effectively shrouded in mystery. While it does receive aid from countries like China, North Korea obviously has had problems producing enough fuel and food to properly care for its citizens. Military spending far outweighs spending on social programs and aid, mostly to put on appearances for the rest of the world in their famous outbursts of saber-rattling, and to keep citizens in line.
The country’s major issues can be traced back to a number of natural disasters and the collapse of the Soviet Union, as the land, people and equipment have all been ‘worn out’ over the years, according to a CNN report. With little hope for change in the near future, North Korea is destined to remain one of the planet’s most corrupt and destitute nations.
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
3. Afghanistan
  • Corruption score: 8
  • Power structure: Islamic Republic
Afghanistan has an incredibly difficult history to try and condense. The area has been inhabited for a very long time — and its geographic location has also put it in the middle of many conflicts over hundreds, if not thousands of years. There’s a reason the country has been stuck with the nickname ‘the graveyard of empires’, as it is incredibly difficult to not only conquer, but to keep under control.
The country has been loosely held together by a central government that largely lacks power, and has been carved up by a myriad of local tribal leaders and warlords, as we’ve seen first-hand with the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. A former Soviet state, the country also suffered as a result of the U.S.S.R’s dissolvence. The country’s now-former president Hamid Karzai was notoriously corrupt — he’s been recently busted for taking bagfuls of money from the American military, among other things. Afghanistan is also home to an enormous amount of the world’s heroin production, which has brought lots of wealth to a lucky few.
The country’s economy has remained in a state of flux for some time now, although the fall of the Taliban has helped — as has a flood of international aid. But it still faces major issues going forward. As the CIA puts it, “Criminality, insecurity, weak governance, lack of infrastructure, and the Afghan Government’s difficulty in extending rule of law to all parts of the country pose challenges to future economic growth.”
Photo by Ashraf Shazly/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by Ashraf Shazly/AFP/Getty Images
4. Sudan
  • Corruption score: 11
  • Power structure: Federal Republic
One country that has been wrapped thoroughly in the grasp of war for many years is the African nation of Sudan. Long-standing conflicts between competing factions and ethnic groups have destabilized the country’s ability to efficiently operate from an economic standpoint, and the result has been devastating to many of the country’s citizens. South Sudan has also recently broken-off from the rest of the country, taking with it vast oil reserves. CNN reports that Sudan’s GDP was expected to contract by a fair amount due to South Sudan’s departure.
The country’s government is listed as a federal republic, which is ruled by the National Congress Party, according to the CIA. The NCP came to power after a coup d’etat in 1989, and has not been able to successfully repair the nation’s issues. As a result of the prolonged instability, Sudan’s GDP has tanked since spiking in 2006, much of which has to do with the situation in South Sudan.
Forty-six and a half percent of Sudan’s citizens live under the poverty line, by The World Bank’s calculations. The nation’s GDP stands at $66.55 billion as well. Both of these statistics would likely see improvement if not for some of the draconian and growth-inhibiting policies of the NCP. Also, if Sudan can find a way to rid itself of some of its corrupt officials, many violent conflicts could possibly see resolution as well.
Photo by Roberto Schmidt/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by Roberto Schmidt/AFP/Getty Images
5. South Sudan
  • Corruption score: 14
  • Power structure: Republic
One of the world’s youngest countries, South Sudan officially declared independence in 2011, following long-standing conflicts with its parent country, Sudan, which gained its independence in 1956. Between the mid-1950s and now, conflicts in the region have resulted in the deaths of as many as 2.5 million people, or so the CIA contends. South Sudan now stands as an independent republic, composed of 10 states.
A nation still in its infancy, South Sudan does not have the traditional long-standing government structures in place that many others do. This has led to ripe opportunities for corrupt politicians to step in, and as a result, the country has remained mostly undeveloped, and its citizens participate in a largely subsistence-based economic system. One other issue is the lack of a sense of nationhood among the 200 or so ethnic groups occupying the country.
According to The World Bank, the vast majority of South Sudan’s GDP — around 80 percent — is derived from oil exports. This has been a major problem, as international oil companies have been able to take advantage of the nation’s weak governmental structures and regulatory policies, turning huge profits at the expense of the citizens. In fact, 85 percent of the country’s workforce is engaged in non-paid labor. More than half live below the poverty line as well.
Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images
Photo by Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images
6. Libya
  • Corruption score: 15
  • Power structure: Transitional
Few nations have experienced as much turmoil over the past few years as Libya. The country’s government saw its downfall during a mass uprising and protest, which ultimately led to protestors parading around with the body of former president Muammar Gaddafi on the streets. The country’s fall was a part of the ‘Arab Spring’, which also saw mass protests in Syria, Egypt and Bahrain, among others.
Now, Libya is still embroiled in turmoil. No formal government has taken root, and fighting between rebels and those loyal to the old administration is still taking place. Due to the high levels of uncertainty, the country’s GDP contracted 9.4 percent during 2013, according to The World Bank. The power vacuum has left open a great opportunity for arms dealers and corrupt military higher-ups to take charge and make profits by pitting citizens against each other.
Libya currently operates under a transitional government, and both its administrative and judicial systems are vulnerable to a wide variety of outside interference. It’s economy is almost entirely based on energy, which supplies 95 percent of export earnings and 80 percent of the nation’s GDP, per the CIA. Until a new, permanent government can be established, Libya will most likely remain a hotbed of political and economic instability.
Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty Images
7. Iraq
  • Corruption score: 16
  • Power structure: Federal Parliamentary Constitutional Republic (ostensibly)
Many people may be surprised that Iraq isn’t higher on the list of the world’s most corrupt countries, but its certainly up there. It’s no secret the current state of affairs in Iraq is a total mess. After the second American invasion in 15 years, the pullout of U.S. forces has left Iraq a virtual power vacuum, with several different sects fighting for power over the embattled nation. Fighting is mostly concentrated between the Kurds, the Shiites and the Sunnis, but the arrival of ISIS from Syria has added additional issues.
The CIA lists Iraq’s government as a parliamentary democracy, but the legitimacy of the government is definitely up for debate. And there’s definitely little debate as to whether or not corruption has taken hold in the country, as Iraq’s vast wealth and natural resources have made it a target for all kinds of industry and war profiteers.
Iraq has actually seen some economic growth as the country rebuilds itself, but there is also a lot of outside interference from American and European contracting companies, hired to rebuild infrastructure and tap into the country’s oil reserves. The future of Iraq is probably as uncertain as any country in the world. It’s very possible that the nation will dissolve and turn into three distinct countries, as it was before Europeans entered the fray in the early 20th century. As for now, incredible instability — along with the arrival of ISIS in the north — will keep the country in a state of flux.
Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP/Getty Images)
Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP/Getty Images)
8. Uzbekistan
  • Corruption score: 17
  • Power structure: Republic
One of the lesser-traveled nations in the world, Uzbekistan finds itself as one of the world’s messiest countries. From an economic standpoint, things appear to be going alright with 8 percent growth in GDP during 2013. In fact, information from The World Bank indicates the economy of Uzbekistan has remained more or less the same through the financial crisis which has crippled systems in Europe and North America.
The nation’s government is set up as a republic with an authoritative presidential figure in Islam Karimov. The vast majority of the country’s power resides within the executive branch, making it ripe for corruption. Karimov has been president since Uzbekistan actually became a country after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, winning three straight terms of between five and seven years. Like many other Middle-Eastern authority figures, he has apparently not grown tired of ruling the country.
Much of the Uzbek economy relies on agriculture for subsistence, as the entire country is landlocked and experiences a very dry climate. Many multinational corporations have experienced run-ins with the country’s government, having been accused of not following local laws and customs. That hasn’t stopped the administration from trying to attract more business, however, through tax incentives and sometimes even bribery.

Photo by -/AFP/Getty Images
Photo by -/AFP/Getty Images
9. Turkmenistan
  • Corruption score: 17
  • Power structure: Presidential Democracy/Authoritarian
Turkmenistan resides in a dangerous neighborhood, to say the least. Bordered by Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to the north, the country lies in a virtual hotbed of corrupt states. With the constant turmoil all over the Middle East, it’s been very easy for the country to fall into corrupt affairs, especially concentrated at the top from the authoritarian presidential figure, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow.
The CIA’s file says that Turkmenistan likes to describe itself as a secular democracy and presidential republic, while in practice, its government more closely resembles an authoritarian dictatorship. The country itself was founded as a result of the Soviet Union’s collapse, as so many others in the region, and the resulting power struggle has left the nation highly corrupt and vulnerable to tomfoolery.
Also like many other countries in its region, Turkmenistan’s economy is largely based on agriculture and energy. The country is fortunate to have vast reserves of crude oil and natural gas to supplement the economy, although they are controlled by the government. Misuse of the state’s revenues have driven many investors away and led to high levels of corruption.
Photo by Joseph Eid/AFP/GettyImages
Photo by Joseph Eid/AFP/GettyImages
10. Syria
  • Corruption score: 17
  • Power structure: Authoritarian Republic
One of the world’s oldest countries is, unfortunately, one of the most corrupt. At this point in time, corruption has become the most important issue as well, as civil war has engulfed the country and left thousands dead over the past few years. The uprising in Syria originally began as a part of the ‘Arab Spring’ which saw several dictators across the region fall, but Syria’s leader Bashar Al-Assad has been able to hold on to power through — what many believe — are fixed elections.
The situation in Syria has quickly devolved into one of the worst humanitarians situations the world has seen in recent memory. The fighting has also given birth to the terrorist group ISIS, which has hit the road to Iraq to conquer more territory. Syria’s frightening display of government-sponsored violence and corruption has left many across the world awestruck, and has effectively destroyed the nation’s economic systems.
Due to the civil war and the awful conditions under the Assad administration, the outlook in Syria is not good. The economy is expected to continue to disintegrate, and there is little hope that the fighting and bloodshed will cease in the near future. Millions of people have been displaced, and millions others are starving or cannot find work. It seems the only way Syria will find a happy ending is with the ultimate overthrow of its leaders and corrupt administration.
Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Honorable Mention: The United States
  • Corruption score: 73
  • power structure: Democratic Republic
There has to be an honorable mention for the United States, which many people figure has to be the most corrupt nation on Earth. The fact is, the U.S. does have a great deal of corruption in many forms, like lobbying, bribery, gerrymandering, and bought elections. But according to the corruption index, the U.S. pales in comparison to countries in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
The economic system of the U.S. — although often portrayed as ‘free-market’ — does not quite live up to that description, in many cases. A quick look at the telecom or energy industry shows that many monopolistic forces are at play, and big money oftentimes can get laws rewritten to preserve power and influence. Pressure from big business and labor groups is a major factor in why America is the only major world power without a nationalized healthcare system, and why there has been enormous growth in inequality, particularly as of late.
There are definitely many issues the United States needs to work out — from the financial system to elections — but with the status quo firmly set in place, there isn’t much indication that citizens should expect big-time change in the near-term.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

#30 Percent-Or-Nothing#? Not This Generation...At Least Not Yet!

By Nnaemeka Oruh

The #30PercentOrNothing# hashtag is one of the newest to flood social media in Nigeria. From what I gathered, it is a campaign initiated to ensure that Nigerian youths have 30% representation in the next political dispensation. If you do not try to dig deep into it, it appears like all other 'agitations for representation' – a  noble cause. 

To me however, agitations for such representation are simply proof of the agitators' weak status. For most times, they do not 'demand', they simply plead for, kowtow and ultimately make due with whatever hand-out they get. Most times, as soon as the leaders of such agitations are 'settled' the request dies down. So clearly, I am not a fan of such agitations except if they are well modelled as demands and not requests.

The most important thing though is that such requests are made by people operating from a position of weakness. That Nigerian youths who indeed should represent a greater majority of voters in the country should engage in such demand shows the hypocrisy of it all. If what they really want is representation, then they should galvanize other youths and get them to vote in mainly youths. So in all clarity, #30PercentOrNothing# comes clothed fully as  simply a political machination of some youths to seek a way into some government appointments with the view to enriching themselves or gaining political currency. It is in this vein simply individualistic. It is not a demand for the good of Nigerian youths; it is a symbolic representation of what majority of Nigerian youths are: a generation sculpted almost perfectly in the image of their corrupt fathers. Except that they may eventually turn out worse.

(pix: 30percent-or-nothing)

This is a generation that hungers after material things more than anything else. What sells mostly among Nigerian youths is materialism. Forget about intellectualism, it is not really lauded here. Both genders are in a fierce scuffle to see who best displays how much material possession they have gathered. A journey through social media will eloquently testify to this. Post intellectual matters or a picture of a book, and see how far nobody is moved. But once pictures of material things or lousy opinions about material or irrelevant things are posted, Nigerian youths will trip all over themselves, trying to outdo each other with comments and sharing of such things. This is what they are good at; it is the soul of their existence. The exceptions are only but a few.

This is a generation that would rather spend hundreds of thousands in purchase of expensive mobile telephones than buy books that can help shape their future or make them better. Granted that most of the telecommunication devices have applications that can help with studying, but what you mostly find purchased or downloaded are the applications that entertain rather than educate. This is a generation that has become so lazy that suddenly the possessive pronoun 'your' has taken over the second person pronoun and verb combination 'you are'(or you're).This is a generation that basks mainly in emptiness of the brain and an uncanny desire for material riches. And this is the generation that is demanding for #30PercentOrNothing?#

 Considering this generation's focus then, it is of little wonder that a few among them has come up with this strategy to satisfy their own desire for material riches. Make no mistakes, the clamour is not for the totality of the youths. And when the few protagonists of this 'request' finally get 'settled'(the plan is to make as much noise as possible and get old politicians' attention so that they will use the platform to deliver the votes of youths to the older generation of politicians and then get compensated with political appointments and/or contracts), trust me, Nigerian youths will be too lazy to even notice that they have been used. They will simply move on. Already, information from twitter is that former vice president Atiku Abubakar has promised 50% participation for youths if elected. The drumming is beginning to heat up.

I look at this generation and I cannot help but feel deeply sad. I feel sad because I believe that for now, this generation is not yet ready to lead itself talk more of others. That is why despite having more opportunities for better education and integration with people from other parts of the world than our fathers, we are still being led like sheep by them. That is why when we are supposed to be using our superior exposure and numbers to take over the leadership of our country and forge a new future for our own children, we gather and drum like beggars for hand-outs. From all indications, we are not ready to lead and make this country better. No, not this generation. Not this generation of youths majority of who know nothing about their rights. Not this generation of youths who sacrifice a bright future in service to octogenarians whose grip on the country keeps choking her. Not this generation of youths whose dreams are primarily hinged on a full stomach and some extra to flaunt as a mark of achievement. Not this lazy generation that cannot differentiate between “your” and “you are” (or you’re).

Give me a better Nigeria, I demand, but do not hand me over to this generation whose majority are worse models of our present leadership. No, not this least, not yet.

Mr. Oruh, a contributor to SCRUPLES writes from Port Harcourt (Email:

Ebola—Open Letter To The ECOWAS Presidents

By Chinweizu

(21 October 2014)

As the spectre of Ebola stalks the world, people everywhere are looking accusingly at the ECOWAS presidents. Like the commandants from whose prison a jailbreak of very dangerous prisoners has just happened, they had better have a damned good explanation of the event or face court martial etc. The citizens of ECOWAS demand no less. How can these presidents allow such a thing to happen on their watch and disgrace all Africans?  Aspersions of all sorts are being cast on us as incompetent to manage our countries. Africa is being demonized as this mysterious human backwater from which strange diseases emerge to afflict the whole world. Before long it will be argued that Africa should be re-colonized by the West to protect the whole world from the deadly incompetence of its corrupt black misrulers. In the meantime, the economies of ECOWAS countries are suffering. Their tourism sector has already been hit by postponement and cancellation of conferences, group tours, private visits etc.  In farming villages economic activities are being disrupted as the people flee for safety. And when the entry bans being urged in the USA and elsewhere are imposed, there will also be the cost of social disruption as family members, barred from entry into America and Europe, cannot visit one another. Students back home on vacation may not be able to return to their campuses abroad, nor will importers be able to make quick trips abroad to buy and bring in goods.  Emergency trips abroad for treatment of other ailments will be affected. Until the epidemic is ended, the economies of ECOWAS will be seriously hit and the economic and social coats will keep mounting. And the epidemic can’t be ended without knowing its causes and therefore the effective ways to combat them. After all, if you don’t understand it you can’t fix it. I, as a concerned ECOWAS citizen-- and I believe many other Africans would join me in this--therefore demand an emergency ECOWAS Summit on Ebola at which the ECOWAS presidents should set up a public and independent Commission of Enquiry comprising eminent international judges and jurists to investigate the event and find answers to some pertinent questions:


On Feb. 18, 2006, I delivered a public lecture at Muson Centre, Lagos, titled “Lugardism, UN Imperialism and the prospect of African power.” In it I mentioned a book, published in 1997, whose title should be the starting point of discussions on how to contain and end the Ebola epidemic of 2014. It was Emerging Viruses: AIDS & Ebola - Nature, Accident or Intentional? by Dr. Len Horowitz ,(Tetrahedron, LLC., 1997; ISBN:092355012-7;$29.95)   

That title, from nearly twenty years ago, suggested that AIDS and Ebola may not be natural viruses, but lab-made viruses.  For the purposes of investigating this Ebola epidemic, and until a better hypothesis is offered, let’s start with the hypothesis that this Ebola epidemic has been caused by a lab-made virus.          

If it is a lab-made virus, then how come it is now suddenly proliferating in West Africa, in the Mano River basin countries (Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea)?  How many genetic engineering labs using recombinant technology are there in those countries? Who operates them? That’s where, in my view, the ECOWAS Presidents should begin their inquiries if they want to protect their populations from this and similar virus epidemics in future.


Here are some of the pertinent questions to be put to the proposed ECOWAS Commission:

(1)   Is the Ebola virus natural or artificial, i.e. lab-made?

Logically, it is either natural or artificial.

Here is an editorial in The Observer (London), Sunday 5 October 2014, telling of the first death in this epidemic:

“On 26 December 2013, a two-year-old boy fell sick with a mysterious illness whose symptoms local people and medical workers had never seen before. Within two days, the boy was dead.”       “

This suggests that it was not something previously known in the area. Hence it could not have been naturally present or endemic in that ecosystem. If it were a natural and therefore ancient member of the ecosystem of the Mano River basin, it would have manifested there long enough before now for the local population to have developed some immunity to it and to have knowledge of it--as with malaria. Ergo, it is a recent introduction to the area. And it is probably an artificial virus.


(2)   If Ebola is a lab-made virus, who manufactures it?

(3)   Is there any patent on the Ebola virus? If so, who owns the patent?

(4)  Who brought the virus to the Mano River Union countries (Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea) and in sufficient quantities to infect so many as to have killed some 3000 in the ten months since that first death in December 2013?

(5)  Have any labs in those countries been working on Ebola?

(6)   If yes, who set them up and who operates them?

(7)   Where precisely are they located?

(8)   How did the virus get from the labs to the village where the boy lived?

(9)   Was the escape to that village accidental or intentional?


Some other intriguing questions that ECOWAS presidents should direct the Commission to investigate include:

(10)  Is it true that researchers from Tulane University, New Orleans, USA, have been operating in the area for about ten years under the leadership of one Dr. Robert Garry, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at Tulane University School of Medicine?

(11) Have they been conducting any experimental treatments on citizens of the region (e.g., injecting monoclonal antibodies)?

(12) What are the declared purposes of the Tulane University research project?

(13) Do they include detecting the possible use of hemorrhagic fever viruses as bioweapons?

(14)Have they also been investigating the use of monoclonal antibodies as a treatment for Lhasa fever and other viral hemorrhagic fevers?
(15)If so where? On-site in Africa or outside Africa
(16)What treatments have such investigations produced for Ebola?
(17)Have these treatments been made available to the Ebola victims in West Africa? And how soon after the epidemic began?

(18)What precise roles have Dr. Robert Garry, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, and Dr. James Robinson, Professor of Pediatrics, been playing in this research?

(19)What do Profs Garry and Robinson have to say about the origins of this epidemic?

(20)  What role has Corgenix Medical Corp been playing in the Tulane research?

(21) What does Douglass Simpson, president of Corgenix, have to say about the origins of this epidemic?

(22)Are any US Government agencies or UN agencies associated with Tulane University in this research?

(23) What role has the World Health Organization been playing in the Tulane University research?

(24) Who funds this Tulane University research project?

(25) Is it true that the Cubans sent help before the UK and USA? If so, How come the big countries were tardy?


(26)Did the governments of the affected countries (Liberia, Sierras Leone and Guinea) sign agreements permitting the research and trials in their territory?

(27)Were any risk assessments done before the arrangements were agreed?

(28) Were they given financial incentives/ rewards to allow the research?

(29)  Did they clear these arrangements with the other ECOWAS countries?

(30)  Are these governments in any economic arrangements with China?


These are 30 pertinent questions. Let an ECOWAS Commission of eminent jurists be set up, and let them help a frightened world to find and listen to the evidence.


If the ECOWAS investigation upholds the hypothesis that the Ebola virus is lab-made and new to the ecosystem of the Mano River basin, then whoever they were that brought this artificial Ebola virus to West Africa are prima facie responsible for causing this epidemic. And they have a legal and moral obligation to supply any cures they have developed and in sufficient quantities to eradicate the epidemic WITHIN A MONTH

The fearful citizens of ECOWAS, the fearful people of Africa, indeed the fearful people of the whole world need answers to these questions. And it is the responsibility of the ECOWAS presidents to start providing the answers without delay. The whole world is frightened; the whole world is waiting! The whole world is watching and judging them. Let them not, by inaction or delay, convict themselves of indifference or incompetence or worse.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Ebola: Liberian President Writes Very Touching Letter To The World

Dear World
In just over six months, Ebola has managed to bring my country to a standstill. We have lost over 2,000 Liberians. Some are children struck down in the prime of their youth. Some were fathers, mothers, brothers or best friends. Many were brave health workers that risked their lives to save others, or simply offer victims comfort in their final moments…

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf 

There is no coincidence Ebola has taken hold in three fragile states – Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea – all battling to overcome the effects of interconnected wars. In Liberia, our civil war ended only eleven years ago. It destroyed our public infrastructure, crushed our economy and led to an exodus of educated professionals. A country that had some 3,000 qualified doctors at the start of the war was dependent by its end on barely three dozen.

In the last few years, Liberia was bouncing back. We realized there was a long way to go, but the future was looking bright. Now Ebola threatens to erase that hard work. Our economy was set to be larger and stronger this year, offering more jobs to Liberians and raising living standards. Ebola is not just a health crisis – across West Africa, a generation of young people risk being lost to an economic catastrophe as harvests are missed, markets are shut and borders are closed.

The virus has been able to spread so rapidly because of the insufficient strength of the emergency, medical and military services that remain under-resourced and without the preparedness to confront such a challenge. This would have been the case whether the confrontation was with Ebola, another infectious disease, or a natural disaster. But one thing is clear. 

Liberian President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf with US
 President Barack Obama at the Oval Office in May
 2010 (pix: CD Brown)

This is a fight in which the whole world has a stake. This disease respects no borders. The damage it is causing in West Africa, whether in public health, the economy or within communities – is already reverberating throughout the region and across the world. The international reaction to this crisis was initially inconsistent and lacking in clear direction or urgency. Now finally, the world has woken up.

The community of nations has realized they cannot simply pull up the drawbridge and wish this situation away. This fight requires a commitment from every nation that has the capacity to help – whether that is with emergency funds, medical supplies or clinical expertise.

I have every faith in our resilience as Liberians, and our capacity as global citizens, to face down this disease, beat it and rebuild. History has shown that when a people are at their darkest hour, humanity has an enviable ability to act with bravery, compassion and selflessness for the benefit of those most in need. From governments to international organisations, financial institutions to NGOs, politicians to ordinary people on the street in any corner of the world, we all have a stake in the battle against Ebola.

(pix: presstv)

It is the duty of all of us, as global citizens, to send a message that we will not leave millions of West Africans to fend for themselves against an enemy that they do not know, and against whom they have little defence.

The time for talking or theorizing is over. Only concerted action will save my country, and our neighbours, from experiencing another national tragedy.

The words of Henrik Ibsen have never been truer: “A thousand words leave not the same deep impression as does a single deed.”

Yours sincerely,

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

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