Africa: End of colonialism?

16 December 2007 at 01:20 | 1398 views

By Ahmed Bangura, UK.

African countries have long been followers of their uninvited colonial masters even after attaining independence. The political leaders and even citizenry in these former colonies believe they have to pay reverence to people that once ruled them cruelly with a ‘divide and rule’ policy and left a legacy of ethnic and geographical divide.

This attitude of ‘Follow the Master’ has made Africa a follower and dependant of Western AID, and subjected to economic and political bullying despite her vast natural resources.

Today, despite being led by leaders that are yet to service the psychological needs of the people they governed, it appears that the dark cloud of colonialism is fading away in our beloved continent.

Colonialism was never a dream of our people to see outside forces determine our destiny. It(colonialism) was an era which ushered economic exploitation, political suppression, cultural contamination, and a loss of binding principles, values and beliefs that once held our people together.

The aspirations of our people were influenced greatly and dramatically as we can see today. The era has left a legacy of Anglophone and Francophone conflicts of interest in the continent, making it difficult for regional bodies to adopt regional policies in the the interests of the people.

This problem was exemplified during the brutal wars in Liberia and Sierra Leone which paved the way for a regional ECOMOG force. But to our dismay, the regional body was sabotaged by French speaking West African countries that were greatly influenced by their former colonial master France. The regional military body, with the exception of Guinea, had a boost from English speaking West African countries to deliver these two countries from a reign of terror.

The impact of colonialism did not only stop there. It also interfered with our political system. Former colonial masters became determinants of WHO to rule, WHEN to rule, HOW to rule, HOW LONG our leaders can stay in power, and what decisions they must support at national and international levels. The legacy of the system tied up African countries in unfair bilateral political and economic agreements which resemble an unbreakable nefarious chain.

Today, it seems as if that chain of metamorphosed colonialism is falling apart. Its centre is no longer firm and entrenched. African leaders and scholars are sending, to oblivion perhaps, this legacy of unjust economic and political relationships with former colonial Masters.

African Leaders are beginning to realize that they are elected to serve the interests of their people and not former Colonial Masters. This means that the destiny of the continent is in our hands and no longer based outside. Such action was manifested in the recent Africa-EU summit which demonstrated to former Colonial Masters that they are not only losing ground in Africa but also that the era of post colonialism is over. They would be welcome in economic and political agreements as partners in development and not Masters of Colonial Leverage.

During the Africa-EU Summit, African Leaders resisted vehemently any acts of subversive agreement that will erode potential economic growth and development, economic ties with potential investors like China, and political dictates on the continent. This heroic adventure to stamp out the ugly vestigies of Colonialism from our continent could be a step in the right direction.

It is hoped that the dynamics of such a valiant act of a unified African reformation is sustained forever with positive economic and political actions in the continent to save our deprived, poor people from hunger and diseases.

Long Live African Prosperity!!!