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Opinions of Friday, 10 July 2009

Columnist: Confidence, Abdulai Hanan R.

Africa Should Give Obama A Break

The arm of history was twisted cruelly without harm or hurt on November 5, 2008. A day the whole world walked in one direction with a tremendous adjustment to the pages of history books. The jinx that bedevilled “Zongo” America since Adam was murdered in unison. A reality that is unconceivable within the remit of Africa.

In common parlance, Barack Obama was elected as the first Black American president by the World’s Power that has resolved to remain the pacesetters in the realms of impossibilities. This in my opinion remains the pinnacle of America’s democracy.

On January 20, 2008, everyone with blood running through their veins felt envious and wished America was their land of birth as the son of Africa took an oath to rule “once upon a time masters” amidst cheers and chills.

The euphoria of Mr. Obama’s victory across Africa observably has been over celebrated with productive time including a holiday in his fatherland. The euphoria seems unending as the star of Mr. Obama keeps exuding radiance across the Africa and beyond.

In fact, Africa has now been afflicted with dementia as obsession of Obama as African son reaches untreatable levels among the Obamamanias. Obama is now touted as God-sent to ameliorate the woes of Africans. Hence, Africans continue to invest many hopes in their son to create an about-turn in the lives of Africa.

The ecstasy generated within African countries now supersedes that of the Americans. The mere decision of Mr. Obama to visit Ghana as first Black Country in Africa has caused unnecessary stir and chin-wagging among African nations. And Nigeria and Obama’s fatherland evidently became jealous and baffled over this choice.

Typically, the African always want to be associated with success when in actual he does little or nothing to attain success. So, everywhere you go across the black land is Obama! Obama!! Obama!!! I think enough is enough of these Obama noises. Let us get back to work!

Let us get our ass in gear because Obama did not win the elections with efforts of Africa. Take or leave! With all his success life stories and academic laurels, Obama would have had it tough becoming a president in Africa. In fact, it would have cost him about 1500 lives before he could become a president of his homeland, Kenya; at least three round of voting in Ghana; and demolishing of Mountain Everest to lead Zimbabwe.

Let us not be derailed with bliss of African ruling the World. Obama is president of America and not Africa. And if the Whites were cursed with the mentality of the African Obama could only attained his dreams and aspirations in heaven. We should moderate our fuss about Obama’s Africanness because his present status is the decision of the discerning men. I said “decision of the discerning men” because the black population is just 12.4% in America; very infinitesimally insignificant so far as politics is concern in the America. Obama won because the Americans believe in the “can do” spirits.

Look across Africa, from Algeria to Zimbabwe, the story is just pathetic. We vote party symbols with “demons” as candidates. Religion, tribe, creed and other social divisions are employed in deciding who should guide our future. When the “sensibles” are breaking chains of race, we are struggling with chains of mere tribes and other trivialities.

Cast a glance at Zimbabwe, it is ruled by human-faced Satan who has enough heart to watch human beings to die like bird flu in a poultry farm. In Togo only one family has the right to rule and they have been ruling since 1960s. In Ghana we have political parties that are manage by a single tribe – the last election is a testimony. Make a juxtaposition of Africa to the West and the Americas, we are our own enemies.

Better life for Africa is not in the hands of Obama but remains an onus on African leaders: the people made America; America did not make the people. In terms of democracy, human rights, gender equality and equality before the law, America is in the lead. Look at Africa, George Orwell’s “Animal Farm.” As a matter of fact, the prisoner in America has more rights and freedom than the free man in Africa. Why?

Let us not kill ourselves over the Obama fever. If you care to know, the Americas slogan is “America First.” Any other matter, be it individual, group or whatever is secondary. In Africa the inverse is true! Once my family is ok, the rest can go to hell in the hand basket! One tribe can dictate the tempo of the chorus! Until America is satisfied; no left over for Africa! Charity begins at home.

Granted that Obama was to rule America forever, the negatives in Africa will remain negatives until we begin to cleanse the animalistic instincts of greed that has almost become a disease of all African leaders. Obama can make million major policies on Africa; the value remains the same without sense of patriotism that is apparently an enemy of the African politician.

Obama’s inaugural speech still resounds in the minds of Americans and lots of people. It is the most powerful speech I have ever heard. It was power-packed packed with hopes that could “walk” the cripple and “see” the blind. The speech alone was re-employment to the millions who lost their jobs in the Bush’s mishandled economy. Compare his speech to the most recent victory speeches of African leaders – you will realise that one is an insult or demoraliser.

Mr. Obama did not waste his 37 paragraphs speech on his background which Africa is making so much noise about. Mr. Obama spoke about his root in a single paragraph (paragraph 33) in four lines of 12 point print. Nearly all were focused on America’s economy survival and more on Africa’s dirty politics which is the roots of our woes.

Obama on dirty Africa’s politics said “To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”

Aids, grants, loans and freebies in millions from the Obama’s America to Africa will only make our case the same if not worst. Africa has received these helps since infancy, but it is still not growing, she is afflicted with chronic marasmus. Where are the funds? We all know where it goes!

Obama is so far the greatest African whoever lived and his spells rages with unstoppable force. And every well-sensed should appreciate it. But let us disabuse our minds that things are going to be rosy for Africa with Obama at the helms of the world’s affair.

Ghana is privileged to host Obama first among her fraternity and I believe we will position ourselves well to ensure that Obama’s visit is not an excursion to witness the turmoil his great fathers went through.

Besides that P.W. Botha insinuated that it takes the Wiseman to tell the Blackman that there is money in front of him. Even though Obama’s decision to go Ghana is nailed to our democratic credentials in Africa, I believe he might see something in Ghana that our rulers cannot see. I might sound cynical, but I mean it. Any agreement to be taken must acknowledge interest of Ghanaians.

When Obama comes, please let us not cover our tears. We must cry louder than our pain so that we will be babied bigger.

The world cameras move when the world moves. So, I will entreat all Ghanaians to behave well as any misdeed will be captured by these cameras and subsequently will be a blot on our own copybook.

Obama, the hero of the moment!

Long live Africa!

Long live Ghana!

Abdulai Hanan R. Confidence

Nurses’ Training College, Tamale

Tertiary Institutions Network (P.R.O.)