By Irene Gaitirira
Published January 1, 2017
A British literary charity sent more than a million books to sub-Saharan Africa in 2016 as Chinese investment in the infrastructure of the mother continent peaked at US$4 Billion.
Book Aid International, for the third year running, sent more than a million books to Africa, launched a programme called Inspiring Readers school libraries in Kenya and Cameroon and began supporting libraries in Sierra Leone as they recover from a two-year Ebola epidemic crisis that gripped the West African country between 2014 and 2016.
Alison Tweed, the Director of Book Aid International says the organisation she leads plans to send even more books to the country that lost close to 4000 people to Ebola in 2017.
“We plan to extend our support in Sierra Leone, particularly for children,” says Tweed in a request for assistance statement. “With your help, we can reach even more people who need the books we send.”
Tweed says that “Now, more than ever, people in Sierra Leone – and especially children – need relevant and up-to-date books which help them to reach their full potential.”
Book Aid International, in March 2016, sent 33000 brand new books to libraries in Sierra Leone, including collections to schools.
Meanwhile China says it had invested some US$4 Billion in African infrastructure by the end of November 2016.
The China-Africa Development Fund (CAD), that was established in 2007, has invested in 88 projects across 37 African countries.
Wang Yong, Vice-President of CAD, says that besides CAD’s support, the projects in which CAD has invested have attracted an additional US$17 Billion in enterprise investments and bank loans across Africa.
Wang Yong, who spoke at a business partnership for Chinese and African firms in Guangzhou, said that one dollar of CAD fund investment attracts five more dollars from other Chinese investment.