Moon Shines for Africa to Repair Cracks
Ban Ki-moon UN chief has called an emergency meeting to try to address Africa's failure to make progress on the Millennium Development Goals-the eight internationally-declared MDG goals, on reducing poverty and improving life chances, were set in 2000 for achievement by 2015-but the UN says that halfway to the deadline, sub-Saharan Africa is unlikely to meet a single goal. UN officials say this meeting on a single focused topic is unprecedented-Moon has invited the heads of some of the world's top development finance agencies-President of the World Bank, leaders from the IMF, the European Union and the African Union are being invited, as well as the heads of the African and Islamic Development Banks- in its current form, the UN says, sub-Saharan Africa as a region will not meet any of the poverty-busting goals set to be achieved by the year 2015 - nor the benchmarks on education, health, and women's empowerment. The latest UN assessments say there have been some successes, for example a big increase in primary school enrolment in east Africa, and cuts in malaria rates in Niger and Zambia. Unfulfilled promises-however as a whole, the UN says, development agencies have to co-ordinate better and, crucially, the rich world, will have to keep promises it made in 2005 to double aid to Africa.