The effects of war and peace on foreign aid in Zimbabwe

Theeffects of war and peace on foreign aid in Zimbabwe

Theeffects of war and peace on foreign aid in Zimbabwe

Warfarecan have an adverse implication on a country’s socio-economicgrowth and development. The disbursement of foreign aid in developingcountries has a predominant role in the development process. However,anti-development factors such as war, social unrest, and politicalinstability in these countries pose a great challenge for the foreigndonors. Besides derailing the social, economic, and politicalprogress in a country, war acts as an impediment to the movement offoreign aid to third world countries. Zimbabwe is one of thesecountries that have faced consistent social unrest and politicalinstability[ CITATION Gup12 l 1033 ].The implication of the unstable government has manifested in variousaspects of development projects. The paper elucidates on thefavorableand adverse impacts of war and peace on foreign aid in Zimbabwe.Additionally, it seeks to establish actions that the government hastaken through the foreign assistance, to mitigate adverse effects ofpoverty and war. Lastly, the paper analyzes the efficacy of foreignaid in solving poverty problem and warfare occurrences in Zimbabwe.

Positiveand negative impacts of war and peace

Peaceis vital for a peaceful co-existence, not only in the country, butalso between neighbors, donor nations, and international lendinginstitutions. Foreign aid plays an essential role in augmentingeconomic progress in developing countries[ CITATION Ach14 l 1033 ].Foreign aid donors pledge humanitarian assistance in the form ofdevelopment projects or funds with a pegged indirect condition ofmaintaining peace and stability within the respective country.However, foreign in Zimbabwe has not helped to alleviate poverty andbring political stability.

Internationaldonors, on the other hand, have been wary about the increasingdominance of the ZANU-PF party, also the ruling party[ CITATION Ala12 l 1033 ].The government has used foreign aid in an unintended manner likestrengthening the ruling party and patronage resources, so as toweaken the opposition. As a result, some international donor nationshave imposed travel sanctions and asset freezes against ZANU PFmembers[ CITATION Shi11 l 1033 ].The 2008 elections had a significant impact on the economic andpolitic status as the ruling party ceded to a coalition government.Since the creation of the coalition government, the economy andinflation conditions have stabilized as the country opted for foreigncurrency[ CITATION Ala12 l 1033 ].

Overthe recent past, Zimbabwe has faced protests and social unrests overgovernance concerns. The increased demonstrations and politicalupheavals in the region have paralyzed many economic activities.Zimbabwe has had political crises over the years that havesignificantly affected the entire populace. In the last decade,Zimbabwe faced the worst humanitarian crisis ever, since itsindependence[ CITATION Shi11 l 1033 ].The country’s economy has stumbled and while the governmentstruggles to finance its annual budget estimated at $ 4 billion[ CITATION Rid16 l 1033 ].The country has high unemployment rates, resulting in hunger andpoverty among the citizens. According to statistics, the country hasthe lowest life expectancies in the continent and a significantproportion of the entire populace depends on food aid[ CITATION Ach14 l 1033 ].

Theimpact of foreign aid

Zimbabwehas faced a grave social, economic, and political challenge that hastorn the country apart. As a result of famine, poor livingconditions, and increased poverty, the international community hascome to rescue through the disbursement of foreign aid. However, theprovision of foreign aid to Zimbabwe has not been effective infighting poverty and reducing warfare. Efficient allocation offoreign aid has been a significant concern in the country as foreignaid proceeds only benefit the individuals in power[ CITATION Gup12 l 1033 ].The government has used foreign aid to advance the political nemesiswith the opposition thus evident that international donors havefueled the current social and political animosity.

Humanitarianaid has helped many developing countries in reviving vital publicservices such as education and health care. However, the rulinggovernment faces criticism for mismanagement of foreign aid,increased corruption, and discrimination against the oppositionmembers. The international community has raised questions regardingthe unfulfilled objectives such as allocation of internally displacedpeople. Zimbabwe has the highest number of IDPs, comprising of 8percent of the entire population[ CITATION Rid16 l 1033 ].The IDPs are as a result of the government’s actions to evictpeople so as to create space for mining operations.


Theprovision of foreign aid in Zimbabwe has not accomplished theintended purpose of alleviating poverty and reducing warfareincidences. There has been heightened social unrest in the recentpast, precipitated by poor living conditions, high unemployment rate,ailing health system and increased outbreak of diseases, forcefulevictions and displacement, and unstable economy among others. Theongoing political instability has hindered foreign investment hencedepriving the country essential international benefits. Thegovernment is obligated to provide peace and stability in the regionso as to bolster social and economic development. Therefore,international donors ought to revise their aid policies with Zimbabweto ensure the disbursed assistance reaches and benefits all citizensirrespective of ethnic or geographical boundaries.


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