Global finance and charity killed African healthcare – Mail and Guardian

Global finance and charity killed African healthcare – Mail and Guardian

Think mental illness doesn’t affect healthcare workers? Think again.
What happened to the once universally accepted idea of healthcare for all?

In sub-Saharan Africa, healthcare has been shifted from the realm of politics and democratic accountability to that of billionaires and so-called “experts” in a process that has resulted in what Egyptian economist, Samir Amin, has referred to as “low intensity democracy.” Bill Gates has a much greater say in public health issues concerning Africans than African citizens themselves. Similarly, it is perfectly uncontroversial for South African president Cyril Ramaphosa to publicize local billionaire pledges to the Covid-19 pandemic on national TV, perhaps reflecting that they form his real constituency. Where are the voices of the millions of ordinary citizens who vote in African elections? Have they been hollowed out by the rich and powerful?

Let’s consider Zimbabwe. The country’s Forbes-listed billionaire Strive Masiyiwa, who has invariably donated to the country’s health-care system through his Higherlife Foundation, has proposed the creation of a Special Purpose Trust to help Zimbabwe and Sudan’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. A few months before the outbreak of the coronavirus, a prolonged doctors’ strike, which had all but paralyzed the Zimbabwe’s healthcare sector, ended with doctors’
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