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President Obama in Africa: beyond “yes we can”, yes we must

Africa can, yes, we can, as President Obama said Saturday July 11 on his maiden visit to Africa, the continent from where his father hails, and a continent he was visiting at most, for his fifth time and the first time as the President of the United States of America.

I understand the choice of Ghana was certainly motivated by the country’s democratic rule, stability and progress but again due to the discovery of oil and the need to sign juicy contracts with the now oil rich nation. The expectations of the people of Ghana have been high as they hope to improve relations, demand for fair and balance economic cooperation with the strongest nation on the planet earth.

President Obama was categorical as he said, “No country is going to create wealth if its leaders exploit the economy to enrich themselves…” . African needs viable and reliable institutions and not tyrants as President Obama insinuated.

That is certainly true because Africa’s current colonial administrators are just was bad as the colonial masters were. However, when we look as the fiscal heavens created by corrupt leaders and supported by wealthy but corrupt nations too, which have in a great way impoverished developing nations, then, there are several unanswered questions. When you examine the dysfunctionalities, there is so much questioning.

Areas like Jersey, Monaco, Geneva, Munich, London, Delaware etc are among the top ranking places where illicit funds are kept and banking transactions made in almost no respect with basic legal and moral banking principles like not accepting money from doubtful sources.

President Obama should make it possible for his country to sign agreements with other African countries so that bank accounts and assets of all Africans especially those holding positions of responsibility or who have held positions of responsibility to be tracked at anytime.

For some time now, rich but corrupt countries holding stolen funds have always refused to collaborate with countries from where the funds have been stolen on the pretext of complicated legislations.

The answer simple: The host countries always want to own the money and other real estates gotten from embezzlers. That is why funds belonging to thieves like Mobuto, Abacha, Bongo etc have been virtually owned by host countries.

It is our wish to see Mr. Obama use his influence and that of his country to suggest modifications on the imperialist policies of institutions like the UN Security Council, World Trade Organisation the Breton woods etc. Africa needs fair trades not financial aide, which have greatly damage the continent

As Mr. Obama rightly put it, the final say for the development of Africa rests in the hands of Africans. However, only a revolution is needed because of the visible and invisible forces of colonialism piloted by the successive neo colonial leaders in most of the continent since independence and who have plundered Africa.

When Mr Nicolas Sarkhozy was elected President of France, he talked of "rupture" with most African countries. Many were optimistic that at least such rupture would permit many francophone African countries like Cameroon, Cote D ' Ivoire etc to take off.

However, they came to realise that it was just political talk for the time being. Some of these politicians are so eloquent especially at cajoling or attracting attention.

Most of these current colonial leaders in Africa would certainly not want transparent and accountable leadership because that is not was handed over to them or the instructions they are receiving from the invisible forces.

But, with the growing discontent in the continent, the imminent breaking of the colonial bond to establish the kind of transparent leadership Obama talked about will be a relieve.

When we look at way in which corruption in Ghana was drastically reduced, the person who deserves the credit, Jerry Rawlings, had to kind of close up his country and dealt with the state thieves in a merciless manner.

I strongly believe that dealing with those embezzling state funds should not be different from dealing with murderers and arm robbers because I have seen the pains inflicted on people who would have otherwise been saved by the judiciously use of their state resources.

President Obama’s message is a clarion call for that revolution, but, I believe the visible and invisible neo colonial forces and institutions have to also be destroyed.

The story of the Cameroon port is a sad one. Inasmuch as corrupt officials have managed the port inefficiently, the efforts of nationalistic and pro Cameroon development oriented manager like Etoundi Oyono who resisted the privatisation of one of the port facilities to the French Bolore group met stiff resistance from the visible French neo colonial force. These forces virtually control our “president”.

Nationalistic, vision-action oriented but pro-development leaders will work on the continent's agricultural sector, infrastructure, health, science and technology. They will put the interest of the country first as they negotiate any deals.

On the hand, neo colonial leaders would sow impunity, corruption, embezzlement, make the country dependent; put their country into debts etc. All these because at least they know or they feel their children and their family and friends are one-step in and one out, in case of any chaos. Those are the leaders most of Africa has as of now.

Nevertheless, the bitter truth is, let “former” colonial masters leave their “former” territories alone. No, to neo colonial institutions like WTO, IMF etc. No, to neo colonial leaders. Yes, to transparency, human rights, people empowerment, etc.

Yes, Africa can revolt against current misleading leadership and their shady deals that have impoverished the continent. Beyond the yes, we can, yes, we must implement the said changes to move forward

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