The January issue of African Business carried as its prize-winning letter a missive from Dr Ian Taylor of the University of Botswana that raises issues that must be challenged.
Dr Taylor is, of course, absolutely right to raise the issue of waste, theft and 'flight capital'. But his analysis betrays classic Eurocentric hypocrisies.
African elites, with their 'nice lifestyles' are a fact of life, but they are a fact of life only because there are Western elites who are prepared to conspire with them. By 'Western elites' I mean all the bankers and investment consultants that provide the professional services to facilitate money being spirited out of Africa to languish as nest eggs in our elites' bank accounts in the West.
This has been going on now for so long that you might think, as Dr Taylor seems to, that it will do so for the foreseeable future. But I would point to the very real recent progress that Africans themselves have made to fight the foreign corrupters that would come to help exploit ordinary Africans.
Look at Kenya where the new government is taking a robust attitude to fight corruption--I am fairly sure that there are few transnational companies that would baulk at investing...