The effects of war and peace on foreign aid in Rwanda

Theeffects of war and peace on foreign aid in Rwanda

Theeffects of war and peace on foreign aid in Rwanda

Foreignaid has a paramount impact on the sustainability of social andeconomic activities in the developing world. Foreign aid can be inthe form of humanitarian aid or development projects aimed atensuring improved living conditions and economic progress. Thedifferent types of foreign aids present in the developing countrieshelp reinforce development however, the presence of war adverselyaffects these goals. War and political instability negativelyinfluence the distribution of foreign aid as a result of thehindrances that prevent secure movement of the aid to the respectivecountry[ CITATION Cla14 l 1033 ].The study seeks to focus on Rwanda as the subject of research indetermining the implications of war and peace on foreign aid. Itfurther delves into analyzing the actions taken by the stateauthority to alleviate the conditions prompted by war. Finally, thepaper explores on the effectiveness of foreign aid in lesseningpoverty situation and warfare incidences in Rwanda.

Positiveand negative effects of peace and war

Waris usually characterized by severe social conflict, hostility, andhigh mortality rates. On the other hand, peace is a situation that isgraced with an agreement and differentiated by the lack of anger andviolence. Foreign aid, in developing nations, is often associatedwith the exchange of indirect or direct conditions[ CITATION Cal16 l 1033 ].Typically, donor countries view aid as a means of positivelyimpacting on the social and economic development and improving thepolitical stability status. There are various structuralmodifications that the state government of Rwanda could adopt toensure more resources are diverted into alleviating povertyconditions[ CITATION Ter13 l 1033 ].For instance, a reduction of the public administration hence cuttingdown management expenditures, privatization of state corporations,and dropping down military spending would help the government shiftfocus on economic development. According to foreign donors, economicreforms and regulations are essential in ensuring socio-politicalstability in the country[ CITATION Die15 l 1033 ].

Foreignaid is perceived as an instrument to ensure Rwanda creates andmaintains a peaceful co-existence between its neighbors. Rwanda is adeveloping country that does not meet international lender’srequirements. However, institutions such as the InternationalMonetary Fund (IMF) often provide Rwanda with necessary creditfacilities to bolster economic growth[ CITATION Cla14 l 1033 ].On the other hand, Rwanda has made paramount steps towardsdevelopment in regards to economic and governance reforms such assending troops for a peacekeeping mission in Congo.

Impactof foreign aid

Thelast grave political instability, in Rwanda, was witnessed in 1994during the Rwanda genocide. However, the country still experiencessome authoritarianism manifested through the minority and majority.Foreign aid in Rwanda is meant to alleviate poverty and bring socialand economic progress. Apparently, the donor aid has not been usedfor the intended purpose as it is used to intentionally suppress themajority (the Hutus) while the minority group (the Tutsis) takescontrol of the resources[ CITATION Cal16 l 1033 ].

Povertyremains a major social concern not only in Rwanda but also in thesub-Saharan region. There have been debates and inquiries on the bestand efficient strategy in counteracting poverty in the country.Foreign aid was one of the ways through which the country wouldimprove its social, economic, and political condition. Regrettably,the disbursement of foreign assistance in the country has led to therise of efficacy and legitimacy questions. The foreign aid receivedby the government does not fulfill the intended objectives ofreducing poverty and social imbalances.

Rwandahas a high income and wealth inequality and many areas especially therural region has poor infrastructure and unsanitary livingconditions. The country has strived to reduce poverty levels andenhance economic development. Nevertheless, skyrocketing rates ofinequality have posed a grave hurdle in achieving these objectives.The government has failed to acknowledge the fact that ethnicconflict persists even after the genocide[ CITATION Die15 l 1033 ].Social and economic policies favor the minority group, leaving themajority population starving. Foreign donors continue to extend aidto Rwanda thus widening the gap between the haves and the havesnot[ CITATION Lew l 1033 ].The Tutsis,who are the minority elite group, are the individuals in thegovernment, while the majority Hutu resides in the countryside. Theforeign aid distributed in the country only benefits the minority,while the majority population is left in the rural areas living underpoor conditions.


Foreignaid disbursement in Rwanda does not benefit the entire community,besides the elite minority population. According to history books,the primary cause of the Rwanda genocide was the mistakes made by thegovernment in the 1950s[ CITATION Cla14 l 1033 ].Failure to intervene the widespread social problem in the regioncould see a repeat of the social unrest experienced in the 1990s. Thegovernment is responsible for the welfare of all citizens regardlessof their background. The pervasiveness of social and economicinequalities in Rwanda has thwarted government’s effort toalleviate poverty and attain political stability. Therefore, thegovernmentought to ensure equal distribution of resources, income, and wealthamong the citizens so as to meet the interests of all groups.


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