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Voluntary Sector and Sustainable Development in Africa: NGO Dilemmas, The

B Ogunseye

Book/Report, 23 pages

Many development analysts have concluded that the 1980s was a 'lost decade' for Africa. This has been despite a decade-long regime of economic restructuring administered on the continent through the religiously enforced code of market forces and liberalisation. Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), which were estabished in massive numbers by Africans and international agencies during the decade, were an important part of this new reality in the continent's development experience. But almost a decade later, Africa's development conditions and prospects are today regarded as even more despairing than those of the 'lost decade'. What went wrong, and what is wrong? In particular, why has Africa's NGO sector not made much difference to the continuing, continent-wide malaise? And why is the institutional voice of NGOs virtually unheard during major political emergencies and crises in African countries? The essence of this essay is to raise such questions and underline the dilemmas facing the NGO mission in Africa.

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