Obama Spent $7 Billion to Bring Electricity to Africa, Failed Miserably

Africa knows Obama is worse than Bush.

You can take any Obama policy and boil it down to "Billions wasted" and "ultimately unsuccessful".

One of his lesser known plans involved electrifying Africa. You can guess how that went.

When President Barack Obama made his first presidential visit to Kenya over the weekend, he visited not just his ancestral home, but one of the target countries in his $7 billion signature foreign aid initiative, Power Africa.

Launched in 2013, Power Africa aims to boost electricity access in Sub-Saharan Africa. The initiative has prioritized expanding the continent’s capacity to generate electricity, with an additional focus on small-scale renewable energy investments.

Obama + Green Energy + Third World Aid is such a surefire formula for success that nothing could possibly have gone wrong.

In recent years, hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to expand the grid across most of the countryside, leaving the majority of Kenyans “under grid,” or within a half-mile of power grid infrastructure. The same holds in several other African countries.

Yet the electrification rate in Kenya is still only 30 percent, and in our data just 5 percent of rural households and 20 percent of private businesses within a half-mile of the infrastructure have electricity. The low connection rate holds even years after the grid is in place.

At least, unlike most Obama policies, it didn't

1. Kill anyone

2. Leave everyone worse off

3. Lead to a civil war

But give it time...

Even after the households in our study had paid in full for their electricity connections, it took seven months on average for electricity to flow for the first time. Once connected, households experience regular blackouts — sometimes lasting days or weeks — due to a shortage of maintenance staff and materials. Given these conditions, it’s really no wonder that so few Kenyans have chosen to connect to the power grid.

I suppose that answers the question of whether Obama would do any better at running Kenya than he did America. But at least he was better at it than that idiot, George W. Bush. Right?

As President Obama’s motorcade pulled up on Sunday to a community health center run by Archbishop Desmond Tutu in this picturesque coastal city, people on the streets held signs that read “Thanks PEPFAR.” It was a reference to the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, started by President George W. Bush.

Obama has been widely applauded for distinguishing himself from Bush’s policies, especially in Iraq and Afghanistan. But across this continent, many Africans wish Obama was more like Bush in his social and health policies, particularly in the fight against HIV/AIDS — one of the former president’s signature foreign policy aid programs.

Bush poured billions of dollars into the effort to combat the spread of the disease that once threatened to consume a generation of young Africans, and as Obama has spent two days touring South Africa, the shadow of his predecessor has trailed him.

Africa knows Obama is worse than Bush.