Gates and Turner begin supposed philanthropic endeavor in support of Africa
Posted: April 10, 2008 10:19 AM
LOGAN, Utah- Entertainment mogul Ted Turner and Bill and Melinda Gates were seen leaving a private jet together to meet with local African officials last night.
Reasons were unclear as to why Turner and the Washington-based couple were traveling together, but Bill Gates offered explanation as to why they made the trip.
“(The trip to Africa) was very successful,” said Gates. “We met with officials about future plans. (The plans) are very encouraging.”
Among the “officials” Gates spoke of is African Mayor Malik Ok, who is encouraged by the promise of the three’s endeavor through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
“We met with the three of them (Turner, Bill and Melinda)… we wanted to get a feel of what they wanted to accomplish, and how it fills my people’s needs,” Ok said.
Ok explained that oftentimes, organizations from the United States have donated supplies to the African people to assist in the treatment of fatal diseases in the various African country. However, Ok noted that the donations always came without training and education for the African people as to how to use the medicines and practice proper sanitation- “We are teaching (the African people) how to fish, rather than giving them the fish,” Bill Gates explained.
“There are a lot of diseases, high percentages of diseases that (Turner and the Gates are looking to get rid of. Our city would benefit from their efforts. They want to get rid of diseases like measles and smallpox, diseases that in many areas (of the world) hardly exist. We are going to go into villages and teach the people how to treat diseases and know sanitation,” Mayor Ok said.
Gates claims that his wife and Turner, through he and his wife’s foundation, are working with the World Health Organization to educate the African people about these diseases, and how to treat them.
There could be, however, an ulterior motive underneath the face of humanitarian efforts.
Gates’ 1 billion dollar donation to the cause was one-upped by Turner’s 1.1 billion dollar donation. It remains to be seen if Turner is just as gracious, or perhaps more so, to the cause than Gates, or if perhaps the two economical giants are competing for a face of goodwill.
More motives in the philanthropic endeavor should be unveiled as details are released in two weeks, as Gates said they will say more about the project in two weeks’ time.