IS LEADING IN AFRICA SIMILAR TO LEADING IN REST OF THE WORLD?
AUTHOR; JULIUS P. KESSY
COURSE; DOCTOR OF MEDICINE
INSTITUTION; MUHIMBILI UNIVERSITY OF HEALTH AND ALLIED SCIENCES
LOCATION; DAR ES SALAAM-TANZANIA
TELEPHONE NUMBER; +255753846174
POSTAL ADDRESS; 4873 DAR ES SALAAM, TANZANIA
Basilisks aren’t Iguanas simply because they look alike…
My greetings in the name of peace, pan-African progress and prosperity, oneness, one voice-one people to embrace my black race and not disgrace it as my heart melts over inspiration in a book “The heart leads a man” written by a young Gambian author Amadou Jarou Bah from which as youth, “A leader of today” permit me to say that “true leadership” needs to be humble enough to submit it’s mistakes. That’s the reason why as a candid and a young aspiring leader critics don’t hurt me instead I find it guilt to curse the darkness in a physical world and better to lighten a candle in my mind and in it’s pure consciousness to ponder, not with glued eyes but patriotic ones; were they Afrikaners who discriminated against blacks and call them foreigners in the south? Who said pack your bags and leave? As I ponder, diplomatic senses never dodge to let my mind understand the language spoken. I feel strongly convicted that the chaos and unrest sparking the continent alarm for a leadership of extra caliber to come out aloud with a clear philosophy of how we want to live our own black life. Nevertheless, it’s more comforting seeing behind the scenes that we could provide back loans and donations and throw a badge of ‘developing/third world’ if our approaches in leading were similar. Isn’t it plausible? I please my soul having knowing that, the answer stems deep in their philosophy of leading that it deals with social, economic and political problems at home before seeking for economic shelter elsewhere they are therefore not economic refugees as It is in ‘Africa’ thus we didn’t hear whites being chased from South Africa. Again clicking in my mind is a case of unemployment and lack of necessities that the impoverished black majority faces and it takes me 100 feet deeper to the inbuilt hatred a colonial project planted in its old trick of divide and rule that is too valid today to reveal beautifully smartness in leading. Meanwhile, I imagine how would a black South African burn, axe and slaughter fellow blacks whose blood helped liberate them into a great nation! I come to realize that, the old trick is never old and by this long term projection that a black race ever suspected I hesitate to say leading is still similar, bearing in mind a fact that they now demonstrate practically the right way of utilizing our own resources. To speak it all comrades, the colonial trend of exporting raw materials to Western Europe is still going on as hardly will one see packaged finished “made in Africa” products in Europe and America. A serious sense awakes in me that having natural resources doesn’t necessarily make Africa rich because in themselves aren’t wealth but what counts it’s their transformation which is the real problem that Africa faces as now leading the continent is still impacted by neo-colonialism that is based on the principle of breaking up former large united colonial territories into a number of small non-viable States which are incapable of independent development and must rely upon the former imperial power for stability in their economic and financial systems to transform it’s vast untapped raw materials. By this, leading in Africa is even more challenging than in rest of the world as laying a runway is from paving a cow path. A result of which we only offer raw materials at very low price fixed by capitalist nations and import finished products from them at exorbitant prices and I’m convinced, the trans-Mediterranean human trafficking has proven that for centuries Africa has been a voluntary raw material to its counterparts. Along the ‘boundaries’ is a big secret hindering “regional integration” what African leaders struggle for as colonial transport and communication systems right at the beginning aimed not at unifying instead dividing and exploiting the continent however that is one but glorifying ‘ethnicity’ a mental weapon the colonizers put to tear apart and subdue Africans on top of a pernicious phantom of terrorism that kills and maim indiscriminately is second if we are too keen. How can leading be similar in such an occasion! I get puzzled as our fractured national politics and crippled economy further tempt countless African migrants into a deadly game of “Get free or die trying” on attempt to reach Europe their paradise in the promise of good life. I appeal in a tender voice to all Africans on our way of leading for its failure to convince African migrants that there is no golden pot at the end of a rainbow that awaits them in Europe and despite our own people dying, the crisis seemed not to be Africa’s problem too. We are all the witnesses that our politicians muted and seemed blind like the proverbial ostrich which buries its head in the sand. However this was unlikely in Europe to bring our impractical nature of leading right at my very eyes such that in a youthful continent like Africa if such a difference passes unnoticed I am worried if we notice that the soft loans and donations is a surplus of what they take in the name of investment. So far, the budgets of the starving children of a dry lipped grandmother ‘Africa’ are backed by them and here a western bug “foreign aid” that not only renders us diagnostic of donors dependency but also its trick terms and conditions have clothed white masks to black skins of most African leaders and in such a context the concept of “white acting-African presidents” is vivid and perhaps leading in Africa demands leaders who choke more on being strong and doers to defend their countries and the continent than merely nibbling on flag independence and putting their tails between legs in the fear of losing food handouts and donations from the west. I would rather open up my eyes and smell the coffee smell the difference that contrary to its counterparts, it’s obliged to be even more mindful in leading Africa particularly the new breed of African leaders who never tasted the struggle against colonialism and yet are in the era of new scramble for Africa. Yes a new scramble, as we now batter our heritage for ‘foreign aid’ making leading in Africa even more sluggish as ‘aid’ further greases the wheels of poverty and injustice by perpetuating the existing cancerous spreading ‘corruption’ to the extent that even the corrupters acknowledge cutting off the flow would be far more beneficial than remaining in the hands of westerners as a scar in the conscience of humanity. The conscience that believed Africa as a story of men and women who at critical moments in history choose to sacrifice and to deny themselves so that Africa may be different but sadly in my consciousness I confess it was during those times when leading in Africa was phenomenal and in reality a patriotic move. But with it’s relativity and time dilation today’s African theory of leading appears lagging and indeed a twin paradox to rest of the world where I perceive political-mechanisms to move in a right direction to satisfy most sectors of human importance a difference that is yet acknowledged by Africa and by now every one of us has seen it practically in the health sector when our leaders and their families are sick they run away to seek treatment in abroad, come to think of what’s happening in the education sector the so called universal free education our leaders can never dare to take their children in these school. This is what Carter G Woodson referred to as ‘Mis-education of the Negro’ and I must admit to you that this trajectory of western dominance in social, geopolitical and economic arena is an aura drawn at the expense of practicing what is preached basically on ethical grounds from which today’s Africa has no good story to tell. We engage in stealing public money and stashing them in western banks, most leaders in public offices can never rest till they have homes in big cities of Europe while Africa continues to bleed in Libya, Somalia and many others. African leaders are berated for refusing to declare their assets publicly and demand astronomical pay rise to add to the already exorbitant allowances they receive while Jose Mugica of Uruguay is coined as a world’s poorest president living in a farm house, driving a Volkswagen and with no bank account he donates 90% of his earnings to charitable causes. If you care to think, something lacks – leading by example. That example immersed in socialism that Mwalimu Julius Nyerere and his contemporaries emphasized. But no wonders now leading is a challenge as we welcome a thievery style “capitalism” without realizing it’s a cut throat system where the biggest dog eats the rest. My latest appeal to beloved African youth as I send greetings to my family in Burkina Faso the land of upright people, my siblings in Sierra Leone the land of diamonds and to my comrades in the Dziko of Malawi the warm heart of Africa, do not take to heart that Africa is an underdog and a disparate continent. It has fallen in our generation and here a unique opportunity which i think we should be commended for not being a world’s superpower in spite of resources we already have at hand. We must make a stand to follow a path that made the Africa we know of today, let us stand together as a beacon of light to restore the hope and pride of leading mama Africa.