History does repeat itself and for every generation, there’s an edition of its cycle. Africa the dark continent indeed had always been a continent of wonder and wealth untold. In the scramble for Africa by the then depressed Europeans, one can easily see that the continent was more of a fertile ground for economic, political and religious reasons. Nevertheless, Neocolonialism is as real as a growing seed. Neocolonialism in Africa as we see is made easy through voluntary exchange, trade and the most peculiar of all is technology.
The question is, “why is it that African countries that were conquered never had a say on who was to colonise them?” Why didn’t the leaders collaborate for the greater good of her people? Even now, we can obviously notice in the western region of Africa, where the “power that be” still indirectly controls some states by making critical decisions for them financially and politically. It’s either the leaders of such states are quite incompetent to handle their own or they are only elevated slaves to their masters as a result of the inability to think for themselves. Yet they are the leaders appointed or put there by the fate of the masses.
In this era, Africa ought to dramatically evolve for good. It should be a case of the adage which says “once beaten twice shy”. If we refuse to evolve or grow to be better, extinction is sure knocking on the door. We must learn not to repeat the errors of the past. This time around indigenous pundits should have a say in every strata of our development for national good. We know that these foreign entities are not interested in Africa’s people. Rather Africa, at a glance is seen as a market blessed with human capital and its resources as the riches of other “entities”. We should not forget our past to dismiss their future.
According to Robert Guest in the Economist, it is projected that by 2025 there would be more Africans in the world. So apparently we are a huge market and a competition. The other question now is “how can we better prepare ourselves in this new age?” Regional unity such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has been a useful tool so far in negotiating infrastructural projects and prospers community security and inter-communal political and financial successes. Africa should do more to unite for the benefit of the people.
We see some prominent African leaders shake hands with foreign leaders after a meeting behind closed doors. Are they selling out their people like it was done so cheaply before? Now that Africa comprises of independent countries, we have an upper hand are to make better deals with foreigners. We have a “greater openness to trade and investment from the outside world, this is one of the reasons Africans are two fifth richer than they were in 2000” (Robert Guest, the Economist). The only hindrance will be the unaccountable leaders in less transparent African countries who will only repeat what their ancestors did during the slave trade.
Enough emphasis isn’t placed on demanding transparency in done deals. Much emphasis should be laid upon African voters and the unbiased watch dogs. Our leaders should love and be devout to followers enough not to sell them out to foreigners for selfish interest. We ought to know what goes on behind closed doors so that we know what’s really on ground.
If only some African leaders would slow down and think they are also mortal men like those whom they lord over and work on making a legacy that would resound their names for good, nepotism will rather wear a clerical collar. We have seen some evidence of foreign interest and military links with some African countries in the news and the social media. Is it really for our benefit? African leaders should be more strategical in their foreign maneuvers for the good of our continent and our mother land. We have let bygones be bygones before.
This is an appeal to all African leaders to hone on strategic political, economic and military resources from its citizens up against vultures who have their eyes on us. Don’t be tricked into believing that a firm hand is the therapy to achieve prosperous leadership. Rather, true democracy fosters growth and prosperity even in the education of her people.
Africa is for Africans.