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Opinions of Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Columnist: Atchulo, Joseph

African unity, a threat to the western world

Many times I have asked myself, when will we realize that our actions and inactions are the cause for the dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty in Africa? Many times I have asked myself, when will we realize that the day that we unite as Africans is the day that will spell the doom for the western world. Many times I have asked myself, when will we realize as Africans that until we break those artificial boundaries we have created for ourselves and begin to trade between ourselves Africa is going nowhere
When the great Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah rose up to propagate the message of African Unity they attempted his life through a bomb attack in Kulungugu, a minor entry point in the Bawku District in the far eastern corner of Ghana during his return from Burkina Faso after peace talks between him and president Maurice Yameogo. What appeared to be a warm welcome to him was rather an assassination attempt on the Pan-Africanist Nkrumah; a bomb was masked in a bouquet flower and given to a young fast looking pupil to be donated to the president on behalf of the people of Kulungugu.
Nkrumah escaped death by a minute with injuries when the bomb exploded killing many around on the spot who by commission or omission did the presentation. The effects of the bomb however cost Nkrumah his life in April 1972 through a skin cancer. There is no doubt of the CIAs involvement in the overthrow of Nkrumah, The question is why?
Just when Gaddafi became a symbol of African Unity, urging member states to unite for the development of the continent he was killed by His own people, rebel groups in Libya were supplied with ammunitions by the west to rise up against Gaddafi which cost him his life. I do not want to be misrepresented to be in support of dictatorship because am not. The truth is Libya is essentially a failed state today because those ammunitions given to the rebels are still very much in use today. Gaddafi was not the focus but his quest for African unity was what the west urgently needed to dash to pieces.
When will we realize that the mere pronouncement of African unity gnaws the liver and rips asunder the heart of the western world? Why is the west so much against African unity even though they are uniting amongst themselves.
The question is if all hearts seem to fall for the need for African unity, then what is Africa waiting for? Is it that African leaders are adamant on the call for unity or they do not see the urgency of the call? The question is, is there is no clear blue print drawn for action or worse still the AU is now comfortable than ever with the situation on the continent?
Africa is a continent with enormous solar potentials and mineral resources, research has indicated that Africa alone harbors 40% of the world’s potential hydroelectric power leading Europe and North America with 10% and 13% respectively, but it is sad to note that less than 1% of the resources has been developed, that is the tragedy of Africa.
If Africa ever wants to be taken seriously as a world power, if Africa ever wants to have unbridled independence and peace in pursuing our development agenda then Africa must unite.
To attain such level of economic and political autonomy does not come on a silver platter. Certainly the world powers of today shall perpetually be there to “kick away the ladder” so we never reach the top.
This is confirmed by the words of The Greatest African of the Millennium, Kwame Nkrumah that, “Never in the history of the world has an alien ruler granted self-rule to a people on a silver platter.” It certainly has to be fought for if we ideally need it.
Carl Marx in his Communist Manifesto said, “Workers have nothing to lose than their chains. They have everything to gain. Workers in this world unite!” Standing on the cross roads of a brighter and a more prosperous future and that which is gloomy, uncertain and bleak, Africans have nothing to lose than the shackles of neo-colonialism and sheer imperialism in the struggle for our full political and economic independence.
The west today is invariably having Africa by the balls. They seem to be going by the advice of Niccolo Machiavelli to the Prince in his book, The Prince, “have them by the balls and their hearts and minds shall follow.”
I like the way Isaac Adusei puts it ‘today it’s an open secret that, when the West sneezes, the rest of us in Africa catch cold. African countries have over the decades either been coerced or cajoled into certain economic agreements or been made to adopt policies which defiles their own developmental purpose and rather resulted in their economies been crippled and left vulnerable to the “storms of the West”.
Having known this, Africa has no option than to unite. In unity lies our strength to resist any form of foreign domination and oppression. In unity lies the socio-cultural, political and economic development for which we clamor. In unity marks the threshold of our journey from third world to first world. In unity lies our strength, the strength of Africa; the world’s awaiting power.
It would have being better if Africa had united centuries ago but I speak unequivocally to say that, the best time for Africa to unite is now!!!
There is no need for us to reinvent the whale. History makes it glaring that some of the world powers we have today were even worse off centuries ago before they could dust off their pants to forge ahead for development.
Firstly, the union between England and Scotland in the 17th Century was seen from all angles as extremely impalpable. Invariably, the quest for military, economic and political stability and invincibility made the English fight on until the final union in 1707 which brought forth to the present day Great Britain.
Moreover, the struggles faced by the U.S in the 17th & 18th Century within its territory – between various, ethics, religious, political and economic groups – and with other countries, made their call for unity utterly imaginary. Nevertheless, the value of a united America, made a whole century struggle looked like a day to the ambitious founding fathers of the United States of America.
Until 1949 when Chinese Communist Party won the civil war and established The People’s Republic of China (PRC), China was engulfed by series of wars among the various provinces. But before the PRC could think aloud for development and progress, it first had to settle down to unite the various provinces within its territory.
What actually should stop Africa from uniting at once? Borrowing from the statement of Carl Marx, in his book the Communist Manifesto, Africa has nothing to lose than our chains. We have everything to gain in this struggle for socio-cultural, political and economic unity.
Abraham Lincoln in his struggle for the Union of the United States of America said in his letter to Horace Greeley, “If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it…”
African leaders must know that, Africa Unity is primary and a key concern. It is not in any way the climax of Africa’s achievement and glory but rather the start line of Africa’s development and progress.
In conclusion I dare to say that we have reached a cross road in the socio-economic development of Africa where moving forward is perilous, moving backwards is cowardice, and standing still is suicidal, but we must persevere because winners do not quit and quitters never win.
African leaders! Rise up now or forever perish!!!
Africa must unite, and unite we must!!!

Atchulo Joseph
Phone: 0204186405