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Let them speak English

Pakistan Today | 3 Oct 2014 Imaduddin Ahmed The professional elite of Pakistan have a monopoly on English medium-schools and therefore on global competitiveness “And where in India are you from?” asked the hostess of an upscale restaurant in Kigali, Rwanda. “I’m Pakistani,” I replied. “Pakistani?!” she exclaimed, “But you’re so polished!” Shocked as I … Continue reading

Did you know that North Africans captured 1 million+ white slaves?

Flags of skulls on green backgrounds terrorised the shores of Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, England, Wales, Ireland, Scandinavia, Russia, Georgia, the Netherlands and Germany, as North Africa pirates captured 1-1.25 million whites slaves from the 16th to the 19th centuries. White Gold by British historian Giles Milton is a book that puts paid to the … Continue reading

Wagah border

Not too dissimilar

Aman ki Asha | 20 Aug, 2014 The News | 20 Aug, 2014 Wagah border, between West and East Punjab in Pakistan and India Until I moved to Pakistan for a few years after graduating from college in California, I wouldn’t say that I saw my Indian or Indian diaspora friends as anything other than fellow … Continue reading

Colonial porn – Winston Churchill, Nobel literature prize winner

Published in 1908 when Winston Churchill was 34 – yet to become the British Prime Minister, to be awarded the literature Nobel and to be knighted by the Queen – My African Journey brings us into the colonial mind, and shows us how it makes allowances for brazenly racist statements. ‘It is unquestionably an advantage that … Continue reading

Modi facts – exposing Modi’s lies

Chief Minister of Gujarat (and favourite for Prime Minister of India) Narendra Modi’s state has lagged others in development

Recommended reading for aspiring development practitioners

As aspiring development practitioners are thinking of what to read before they apply or enter degree programmes that will help get them dev jobs, I thought I’d suggest some accessible books. Shout out if you have any further suggestions!   1) King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hochschild << Berkeley journalism lecturer demonstrates how blatantly development has … Continue reading

African (frontier market) risks associated with PPP infrastructure

and how they can be mitigated. Compiled by a PPP transactions advisor to Rwanda (me). Barriers to private investment in African infrastructure: Country political risk –          Eg. medium or high likelihood of terrorist attacks, war, corruption, riots, strikes Risk of expropriation Payment risk Insolvency for state off-takers such as state utilities Inflation/currency depreciation Currency convertibility Risk … Continue reading

Is your local public-private partnership going to be a happy one?

By Imaduddin Ahmed and Shilesh Muralidhara The East African | January 11, 2014 Partnerships can be wonderful. They can also be disastrous. So, too, is this the case with partnerships entered into by governments and businesses for the delivery of public goods, which can either lose countries millions of dollars per project or initiate virtuous … Continue reading

45 books I read this year

(Obviously some books could fall into several of the below categories)   Human nature   1 Pinker: We’ve become less violent as we’ve become civilised  2 Rosseau: Humans are essentially good and are better-off until they become civilised  3 Dawkins: We exist to carry forth our genes  4 Satre: We have no reason for existence  5 … Continue reading

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