A former Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili, has advocated that China should be made to pay compensation to African countries over the Coronavirus pandemic.
The former World Bank official noted that China failed to manage the coronavirus outbreak appropriately and also suppressed information, which negatively impacted the economies of several African nations, including Nigeria.
Ezekwesili, in a post on ‘The Washington Post’, said China must pay compensatory damages to African Nations for failing to act responsibly by cancelling the loans advanced to such nations between 2000 and 2017.
According to her, “Africa’s economic gains since the last global crisis have been eroded.
“It is time to make offending rich countries pay the poor ones a global risk burden tax for delaying their rise out of poverty.
“China should immediately announce a complete write-off of the more than $140 billion that its government, banks, and contractors extended to countries in Africa between 2000 and 2017.
“This would provide partial compensation to African countries for the impact of coronavirus on economies in Africa.”
She said the gains made by many African economies have been eroded by the coronavirus pandemic.
“The economic shock caused by the Coronavirus has hindered the opportunity Africa had to lift hundreds of millions out of poverty. The African Union Commission estimates that Africa’s gross domestic product will shrink by as much as 4.5 percent, resulting in 20 million job losses.
“This has dangerously hampered the possibility that Africa can generate jobs for young people and women, or reducing the number of out-of-school children with access to quality learning opportunities.
“Economies in Asia, Europe have announced hefty emergency stimulus packages for their people and businesses, countries while most of African countries struggle to meet short-term food needs.
“China should demonstrate world leadership by acknowledging its failure to be transparent on COVID-19.
“ China and the rest of the Group of 20 countries should engage with the Africa Union and countries to design a reparations’ mechanism.
“It is time for rich economies to show that our world is capable of doing right by the poor and vulnerable. China must pay,” Ezekwesili added.
Meanwhile, Naija News has reported that China has acknowledged that the number of cases and casualties reported in Wuhan due to the coronavirus pandemic was under-reported. The Asian giant has therefore announced new figures.
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