EU’s fund money to Africa used to fulfill political ambitions than helping needy, Oxfam report

On Thursday, Oxfam released its report highlighting how the aid money given by the European Union to Africa got misused to fulfill political ambitions. The 27-nation bloc set up Emergency Trust Fund for Africa in 2015, to resolve the migration crisis in the region. Europe had been facing massive inflows of migrants from across the Mediterranean and via Turkey.

It’s estimated that over a million people infiltrated into Europe for the want of a better and safe life. But this huge influx of people prompted a backlash with bloc members increasingly implementing anti-migration policies.

The report discovered that from 2015 to May 2019, a total sum of €3.9 billion (Dh15.78bn) was invested in different projects, without any supervision of where the money was getting funneled. The investment decisions were mainly made depending on the political calculations rather than the effectiveness of the relief strategy.

An AP investigation found that EU money intended to stem migration from Libya, one of the largest recipients of trust fund money, was being diverted to the people responsible for abusing migrants.

“There’s no one tracking the money beginning to end,” said Raphael Shilhav, one of the key researchers and contributors of the report.
Shilhav brought up a very valid point for debate, asking if it was possible to divert the money so smoothly, despite the involvement of a huge number of state actors, and organisations.

It is believed that the emergency aid would soon be replaced by a new mechanism, most probably by the end of 2020.

Oxfam report specifically highlighted the case of Libya, where the Libyan coastguard receives the funds, but investigations revealed that it was responsible for human trafficking and human rights abuses in the country.

Besides Libya, even in other nations, similar scenarios surfaced. Even though EU has been trying to resolve the migration crisis within Europe, but this unregulated flow of funds is doing more harm than good.

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