The Oprah Show . ABC Network . September 19 . 2002
The activist rock-star Bono of the band U2 appeared on an extended episode of Oprah Winfrey show to take his campaign against debt in Africa to the US citizen. Bono articulated the vicious spiral between AIDS and mounting debt in the African continent. The rock-star appealed to a predominantly women US audience to join in the fight against AIDS in Africa. Bono justified his appeal by saying "any mother knows that the pain of losing a child is the same in Africa as it is in America".
In the forefront of an international campaign against debt in poor countries, the star has been travelling all around the world, trying to have a dialogue with world leaders and decision-makers. He has lamented the deplorable state of world affairs where a rock-star has to campaign about a serious issue like debt and more qualified people have no time to look into it. In the show, he linked the dearth of funds to tackle AIDS and basic rights such as water with the debt burden. The artist also rattled off figures like : Africa spends over $14.5 billion dollars yearly repaying debts. It receives only US $12.7 billion in aid.
The show comes after his private meeting with Bush junior and travelling in Africa with US treasury secretary Paul O'Neil. At one point in the show he pointed out that poverty and debt crisis in Africa cannot be solved with money as the problem was a political one. More campaign material on African debt can be found on Bono's non-profit organisation DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade in Africa) website: www.datadata.org.
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.
Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.