Contrary to the logical conclusion that the more natural resources a country has or controls, the more prosperous, rich and happy will be its people, the evidence from many Sub-Saharan countries is pointing to a different direction with numerous conflicts occurring mostly near mineral deposits or in countries heavily endowed with natural resources of various sorts. This paper seeks to tackle the basic questions of a sub-Saharan African and any person interested in the region; why are there so many conflicts in the region? Why is there absolute poverty despite the presence of enormous natural resources? What are the factors contributing to the present problems facing the region? This paper establishes the relationship between poverty, resource endowments and conflicts in sub-Saharan Africa. The paper reviews literature, stressing on the different conditions under which resource abundance can and have been a primary cause of conflicts. It argues that poverty and conflicts have re-enforced each other and that natural resources have played a role. The paper also makes use of conflict, resource and poverty data among other variables to establish the probable cause for the numerous conflicts in Sub-Saharan Africa. The paper suggests statistically that Political Stability and Absence of violent conflicts can only be altered by the lack of sustainable economic opportunity, failure to control corruption and rising levels of poverty. It is worth noting that the resource variables are not statistically significant. This however, do not dismiss the role of natural resources in the present conflicts of the region because the trend is observable that most conflict ridden countries in the Sub-Saharan African region are resource rich. It rather lays an emphasis on the fact that resource revenues could be used to avert the current situation by provision of basic needs like shelter, potable water, security, accountable institutions, education and the promotion of enterprise that will be a guarantor of sustainable economic opportunities. The paper employs Maslow's Human needs theory for some explanations and also multiple regression, using panel data for statistical analysis. Fixed and random effects estimation techniques are used, and other statistical testing to determine the validity of the different variable coefficients generated. The paper suggests concrete economic and policy recommendations to the problems enumerated that could leapfrog the region out of the current bad situation it has been in for decades.
|Commitee:||Kasing, Man, Sadler, Thomas R.|
|School:||Western Illinois University|
|School Location:||United States -- Illinois|
|Source:||MAI 54/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||School administration, Sub Saharan Africa Studies|
|Keywords:||Conflicts, Natural resources, Poverty, Resource curse, Sub-saharan africa|
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