BUREAU De Change round tripping is far worse than monkey dey work baboon dey chop. They represent the rich and powerful taking advantage of Peoples Foreign Reserve. Praises must first and foremost be given to hard working men, women and especially children forced into labor for variety of reasons to exchange foreign loot. Kids working from dawn to dusk to support household out of duty, is the height of abuse. Better than those parents turn to street beggars. On the other hand are the political or military leaders whose responsibilities are to provide, protect and take care of their people by making sure the children are attending schools and their parents gainfully employed. It is true that some African countries are so poor that they can hardly provide enough to satisfy most of their population without adequate resources. If that is the case, what about countries blessed with cocoa, coal, tin, gold, diamond, uranium or oil? Poverty, in contrast to grandeur in politics, is striking in most developing countries. The image touches one’s nerve in most African countries. We have seen families on environmental dump sites in major capital cities picking hazardous wastes, from old discarded TVs, radios, microwave and ovens, imported with allocations; sold to middle men that eventually sell them for recycling. Since Africans live in countries that spend naira, cedes, rand or kwacha; how long do they have to work, compared to their politicians, to make enough in order to exchange their money for dollars and pounds? Let us say it took five tons of cocoa to buy a tractor 20 years ago, ten tons of cocoa to buy the same tractor ten years ago and 15 tons of cocoa to buy a tractor today, how hard do African farmers have to work until they drop dead struggling to buy a tractor? The point here is that the harder an average African works, the more expensive it is to buy junk imported goods. The more money an average worker makes, even within family, the more local currencies he has to pay to convert naira, cedes or rand into dollars or pounds. By the time we take Structural Adjustment and devaluation of our currencies into account, it is obvious that average folks have to work to death before he can afford to exchange naira for dollar or pound. We always cry about the mismanagement of those resources  in African countries by both the caretakers and their enabling partners outside Africa. What is even more intriguing or repulsive is whenever looters get foreign currency, they waste it on personal aggrandizement. On a tour of Europe, America and Arab countries, African “investments” in the most expensive areas are breath taking. There is no world class city in the world where Africans do not have investments. Most are unaffordable investments, beyond the reach of Africans domicile in these European, American and Arab countries: in business, with professional jobs, working class or low paying jobs. Only very few of them working for the same currencies in dollars or pounds can afford the locations their politicians invest in. These leaders do not work for dollars or pounds. Yet acquire businesses, homes, cars and bank accounts abroad worth billions from money laundering. Sometimes it’s difficult to point at which is worse: the one that made our currency worthless by devaluation and Structural adjustment or 419 crooks that announced – You Could Have Won A Million – waiting for you in some poor African country only  to be retrieved after down payment of thousands. Both are victims of Sweepstakes Clearinghouse high pressure sales pitch tactics. Some people think that it is worse leeching developing countries than luring greedy individuals. When a country bases its basic needs, wants and economy on foreign imports, the people of that country must pay through their noses for their tastes. Countries like Nigeria and Ghana that used to export food across West Africa and beyond now import foreign food to make up their daily bread. It is easy to claim that it happens only in the big cities but the fact is the taste is infectious beyond cities and towns into villages. Well, nobody forced Africans to change tastes to conform to foreign food and goods enabling Bureau De Change. They are proving to the whole world that they are “civilized”. In the same way, only a greedy fool would fall for a scam that that millions of dollars is waiting for him in some poverty stricken country or even relatively potentially resource rich country in Africa. Indeed, it does not stop there. We import frivolities into Nigeria and other African countries because the foreign exchange is so liberalized in our pledge to democracy, we hurt ourselves. Most of our breweries after all these years are still not self-sufficient, cocoa firms still fight for foreign allocation to make chocolate candy and drinks, used computers and other electronics, used microwaves, used cars, nylon bags, pencils, toothpicks and portable water are imported. The reasons for importing most of these are not based on needs that will move these countries forward or on self-sufficiency; since all of these can be produced at home. It is how the rich and powerful waste our foreign reserves so that their acquired frivolous taste of aggrandizement abroad can be satisfied. They used ill- gotten entitlement in local currencies to acquire dollar. Americans have 100 senators; two representing each of the 50 states. With less population, 36 states, decided we need more senators based on some complex ethnicity. All these are paid from a single fluctuating source of income as oil demand and price dwindle. It has not stopped the highest salaries in the world or reduced the number of administrators. They still loot the Country dry to meet international standard, as provision of local infrastructure suffers. No matter what, internal leeches and external partners will never stop sucking blood and water, out of their dying victims until they hang each and every country dry. Even when it means some work for dollars and pounds while others go chop your dollar. Courtesy: THE WILL


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