“Who’s Killing African Entrepreneurship?” and other links…

Jonathan Gosier: “I can definitely echo this fro firsthand experience. As a small private sector company in Uganda, the danger isn’t so much having your staff poached by big multinationals like MTN or Google, but rather the equally large NGOs who, in their mandate to hire local want to ensure they find the best and brightest. Thus skewing the market because it suits their short term needs.”

“Reflections from Ethiopia: Is Philanthropy Killing Africa?”

R. Todd Johnson: “Last year, while in Addis Ababa, I visited with my friend Sammy, an Ethiopian entrepreneur. Interested in how his new venture was going, I’ve long since learned that if you want the straight scoop from an entrepreneur, you don't ask ‘how are you doing.’ They are simply too optimistic to ever provide a meaningful answer. Instead, I asked Sammy about his greatest challenge in his new SMS content platform business. His two word answer? The ‘NGO economy.’ … ‘Africans don't see a reward system in place for being entrepreneurial. In fact, they view it as a matter of survival, not an opportunity to lift themselves out of poverty. Rather, what they learn at a very early age, is that in order to make good money, they should learn to speak English incredibly well and then maybe, just maybe, they can get a job driving for an NGO. In a few years, if they play their cards right, they might be able to land an NGO job as a project manager and even advance further.’”

What is seen here in the rasx() context is the re-discovery of the same old game: NGO should be the neo-liberal shorthand for Negro. This is of a missionary system of irreligious piety that assumes that “developing countries” will be “developing” indefinitely.

“A Rising Tide: Africa’s Tech Entrepreneurs”

The white African: “Looking at maps like this and talking to individuals in this space, I tend to disagree that the digital divide is primarily between rich and poor in Africa. My theory is that it’s more urban versus rural than anything else. I do travel quite a bit, and I’ve found that you’re much more likely to see a data-enabled phone in use in the slums of Kampala than in the rural backwoods of Liberia.”