Chad’s checkmate

Odious Debts Online

March 26, 2008

Chad’s President Idriss Deby has leveraged a state of emergency after a rebel attack on the country’s capital to “sweep aside” World Bank controls and bolster military spending, reports Reuters.

Reuters quotes an anonymous independent analyst who estimates “seventy percent of Chad’s oil revenues” earmarked for health and education will now go “directly to President Deby,” while the World Bank “can do nothing, their role has become almost nil in Chad.”

The World Bank made Chad’s oil production possible by backing the construction of a pipeline from landlocked Chad to the Cameroon coast. According to a report by Canada’s The Globe and Mail [PDF] :

“As a condition for its support, the World Bank insisted on the implementation of safeguards on oil revenues from the project, meaning that most of the money that Chad receives from oil production was supposed to be either saved up or used on health, education and infrastructure.

“That system hasn’t exactly worked as expected. A $4-million (U.S.) advance received by the country on forthcoming oil revenues in 2000 was immediately spent on buying arms, in contravention of the World Bank agreement. In addition, regulators have said that the country simply doesn’t have the infrastructure in place to implement the law that manages the country’s petroleum revenue, and there’s little information showing where the money is actually going.”

Categories: Africa, Chad, Odious Debts

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