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Aid to Africa — just a lottery?

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French Secretary of State for Cooperation Alain Joyandet is floating the idea of an on-line lottery to raise aid for Africa.
 
The plan is pretty modest – the aim is to raise around 10 million euros a year for projects such as boosting school access to girls in Africa.

Critics are already writing it off as an empty gesture, particularly as Africa is suffering from billion-dollar aid shortfalls as recession hits rich donor countries.

To put it in perspective, the World Food Programme said last month it had received just $3.7 billion of the $6.7 billion it needs this year — a shortfall that would take 300 years of such lottery takings to plug.

Some dismiss the plan as yet another PR gimmick intended to gloss over years of exploitation of the continent by rich world.

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