U.N. Special Envoy for AIDS Criticizes Rich Countries for Failing to Fulfill Promises of Help to Africa
October 24, 2005
U.N. Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa Stephen Lewis on Sunday criticized rich nations for failing to deliver adequate aid to Africa, CBC News reports. "I've spent all my time watching people die unnecessarily," Lewis, who has held the post for four and a half years, said. He added that developed countries often make pledges to provide aid but do not follow through (CBC News, 10/23). Lewis is traveling throughout Canada, delivering a series of speeches about his work in Africa and 20 years of experience with the United Nations and other international agencies that will be broadcast next month as part of CBC Radio's Massey Lectures. Lewis also recently launched the book version of the lectures, titled "Race Against Time." In the book, Lewis criticizes musician Bob Geldof for using the "hype" surrounding the Live 8 concerts in July to allow the leaders of the Group of Eight industrialized nations to promote a "wholly inadequate" aid package for Africa as a "major triumph of international consensus and generosity," the Ottawa Citizen reports. Lewis also admonishes the United Nations, saying he has seen "willful inertia" and "outright irresponsibility" at the agency (Cobb, Ottawa Citizen, 10/22). Lewis this week is scheduled to deliver two more lectures in the series (CBC News, 10/23).
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