Alexander O'Riordan

Alexander O

Alexander O'Riordan has worked on aid and development effectiveness for the EU, UN and various governments in over twenty countries. He has recently moved to Cape Town to complete his doctoral studies on the political economy of donor allocations of funding.

The UN's Culture of Cover-Ups: The Rape of Nine-Year-Olds in the Central African Republic

Picture: The United Nations Building in New York courtesy Knowsphotos/flickr Alexander O'Riordan - Once again the mask has dropped and we have a glimpse of how the United Nations’ (UN) senior management actively supports and covers up abuse. In 2014, a rare principled UN employee, Anders Kompass found and reported credible evidence that French peacekeepers raped starving, homeless, young boys as young as nine-years-old. Instead of reacting with a sense of urgency the UN’s senior management decided to sit on the report denying any possibility of justice or redress for the...

Zwelithini's Lice Comment Only Deflects Attention for Parasitic Royal Households

Picture: King Goodwill Zwelithini courtesy Wikipedia Alexander O'Riordan - Reuters, amongst other news agencies, directly links South Africa’s xenophobic violence to King Goodwill Zwelithini’s incendiary statements: “Let us pop our head lice. We must remove ticks and place them outside in the sun. We ask foreign nationals to pack their belongings and be sent back." However horrific and objectionable these statements are for migrants, they are also illustrative of the anxieties of the Zulu royal house. Lice and ticks are scavengers that...

China Is Already in Bed with the West Even While South Africa Expects It will Be Its Saviour

Picture: President Jacob Zuma meets President of China Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People courtesy GovernmentZA/flickr Alexander O'Riordan - While the ‘Rhodes Must Fall’ protestors have successfully toppled the Rhodes statue at the University of Cape Town, the latest signs are that the global economic order is only getting stronger albeit with a few changed faces. In much the same way that replacing statues of old white capitalists with that of new black capitalists does not change the rules of the economy, so too is there growing evidence that China and other emerging economies are tracking closer and closer to...

Is South Africa the World's Most Generous Donor?

Picture: EurActiv Alexander O'Riordan - The Southern African Customs Union (SACU) is most easily identifiable in Botswana’s, Lesotho’s, Namibia’s and Swaziland’s (BLNS) use of the South African Rand as the basis for their own currencies, albeit through printing their own versions of the rand. The monetary union is now over a century old and the longest standing currency union in the world. By a quirk of apartheid history, the customs union also makes South Africa probably the most generous donor in the...

Our Laughing President: The Real Reason Jacob Zuma Just Can't Stop Smiling

Picture: President Jacob Zuma courtesy Wikipedia Alexander O'Riordan - Last week’s State of the Nation Address and the subsequent fallout is being voraciously dissected in the press. Most of the analysis, however, is on what the media presumes are unintended consequences of President Jacob Zuma’s poor planning. But, what if none of what happened these past few days was unintended? What if everything that transpired down to the reaction of the opposition parties was meticulously planned and delivered exactly as our President expected. I, for...

Will the Greek Elections Strengthen the Hands of the Global South?

Picture: Greece Alexander O'Riordan - This week Greece elected into power the left-wing political party, Syriza, headed by Alexis Tsipras, who led the party to victory on an anti-austerity ticket, thus rattling financial markets by raising the spectre of a Greek exit from the Eurozone and snubbing the European Union (EU), European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund troika of lenders to Greece. As it turns out, I happen to be in Brussels this week, the city where the EU has its headquarters. The word on the...