by R. Dachuben
Sad Introductory paragraph
Our Dear Africa is a butt of jokes in international media. I clicked at the famous and respectable BBC, http://www.bbc.com /news/world-africa and read an article entitled “Mythbuster: What Donald Trump didn’t say about Africa”, 11 November 2016. Needless to mention, Donald Trump is the President-elect of the United States of America, replacing my IDOL Barack Obama, to become the most powerful leader of the Globe. So, here is a quotation from the article, QUOTE “allegedly made about Africa which are doing the rounds on the internet: ” ‘Africans are lazy fools only good at eating, lovemaking and thuggery’ UNQUOTE. It goes on and on ……..
Dear African Brethren.
Whether we like it or not, we are the universal butt of jokes. But it is not my intention to dwell on world view about us but only to review our history of the recent past and see how we fared with our progress. I chose to start from the establishment of the widely tooted African organization with the noble title: “Organization of African Unity — OAU”. It was born “on May 1963 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the 32 African states that has achieved independence at that time agreed to establish” the unity organization (1).
Thirty-six (36) years later, in “1999 the OAU Head of States and Government issued the Sirte Declaration calling for the establishment of a new African Union” (1). The historical meeting, in its wisdom, dropped the word ‘Organization’ from the previous title – hence, after thirty-six years, OAU was formally re-baptized by a new name African Unity, AU – dropping the letter “O”! Today, 13 Nov 2016, is exactly fifty-three years (53) from the establishment of the first African unity organization – currently, with fifty-four (54) Member States.
What did Africa accomplish during the last more than a half of a century? I leave it to the good African Readers to answer the question themselves, behind their private confessional hideouts. But we are lucky. Somebody is daring enough to confess, on our behalf, using modern political terminology that conveniently covers our nakedness. Here it is:
QUOTE “I will strive to ensure that Africa’s dignity is never tampered with if elected as the chairperson. I will ensure the African Union delivers a better life for Africans. We (Africans) have been politically emancipated. We are working hard to ensure we are economically emancipated. We also need to ensure that our institutions, systems and mechanisms are emancipated and that is what I hope you will allow me to work on,” (2) UNQUOTE
Very nice words! I would not hesitate to praise the daring and frank African Lady for constructing her opinion in an elegant, gracious and face saving words. No wonder, she is a diplomat. But I am NOT a diplomat – far, far, far away from it. So, I ask bold, crude but honest questions. Here they are: When was the last time that “Africa’s dignity” was displayed to the world, without being “tampered”? In the last fifty-three (53) years, what did we accomplish in any field of endeavour that “emancipated” the down trodden good people of Africa from socioeconomic and political decadence. I am talking about millions and millions of ordinary strata of African people, struggling for mere survival day by day. Africans have succeeded being the example of “poorness”. I am NOT talking about: a) Dictators and their Enablers who live upon the misery of honest African people; b) Intellectuals of the Highest Order living comfortably in well secured foreign countries, but always ready to be part and parcel of Dictators if safe opportunity arises; and c) the legendary soul-less merchants who live upon the misery of the ordinary population.
The a), b), c) described above are quick to point out, with pride, about the African economic booming as reflected by glittering skyscraper buildings in various cities of Africa; by modern and expensive cars roaming around on modern asphalt roads to be ruined by lack of maintenance; by the ever-lasting night-life, a complete blinder of under developed societies, where mindless gay night life atmosphere is taken as civilization. The self destruction has no end. What is truly sad [even crime] is the consequence of such blind ignorance upon the innocent millions and millions of ordinary good people of Africa who suffered in a consequential miserable atmosphere. Foreign entities, as the enemy of Africa, for their own benefit can be understood but to come from indigenous Africans at the expense of their own brethren Africans is beyond comprehension.
- Conclusion through Questions
And so, we go back to the actual destructive (definitely NOT constructive) period of fifty-three (53) years [1963 – 2016]. Will we have a new African approach to the socioeconomic development of the Continent? Is Africa exhausted enough of inter-country war and destructive behaviour to embark upon a NEW self-defined approach for socioeconomic and political development for Africa by Africans? Are African Intellectuals of the Highest Order of Degrees ready to get together, ‘roll their sleeves’, and develop an African sober blue print as a foundation for the road ahead? OR, are we Africans content as being the laughing stock of the World and condemn ourselves and our future generations as an ever-lasting example of failure? No wonder Africa is a butt of cruel jokes.
Footnotes (1) Google >>> the fantastic source of information; what do we do without it?
(2) “EAC Ministers endorse CS Amina Mohamed for top AU job, Nov 13, 2016, Alleastafrica and Citizen”
Razen Dachuben is a regular Alleastafrica contributors and African politics analyst, based in Africa.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Alleastafrica Media.