The reason Africa is behind in this modern world is the loss of self value given wings by a general poor knowledge of history. The reason Africa still accepts aids from donors all over the world is simply because the spirit of a typical African has been weakened by an inferior complex springing from a prolonged mental damage exercise. Pride of being and race that push a community to preserve and advance itself were replaced at a certain point in our history by shame and disgust for self. As a result, the value we placed on human life fell. The value we placed on African lives fell. This is why their is corruption among the African political elite and a mediocrity tussle in her masses. It is the reason why a human being, with a functional human brain, travels outside the continent, sees the level of development, quality and the standard of living there, goes back home and still steals more money to have that experience again. He has no faith in himself or his people to reach the level of growth he sees overseas and his attitude further tightens the grip of retardation in the minds of other Africans who look up to him. We have to reconnect to our great past. When we had great respect and love for African lives. The history of Africa, showing her strengths, must be broadcasted if the minds of Africans must be reprogrammed and elevated to reach the light. The leaders must show good intellectual behaviour and try to imprint them on the minds of the population. Corruption is just an offshoot.
It is the rat in the house that told the rat outside that there is food inside the house. Africa, after the colonialists left, was not lucky to have good leaders to cradle her. Leaders who have the pride of race and being, free from hatred of own race, free from hatred of other races and free from the selfish desire to dominate their people or other people. We have been ruled by men with poor knowledge of self and goodwill and we ought, by now, stop complaining about what the colonialists did. The colonialists didn’t just come in to rule us but the consent of our highly placed men were sought. African leaders, rather than mend what they claimed was broken, widened them. They have failed to mobilize a people mentally and spiritually broken. If our leaders read our history they wouldn’t have settled for less. If they lived our history they wouldn’t have made an unofficial declaration for a love for poor standard of living. They would know the standard that was set and try to catch up. But African leaders don’t care about that. In Nigeria, History was removed from the Curriculum in 2014 by the government of Goodluck Jonathan. Think about that.
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Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is a very smart man but the idea the he alone is capable of leading the country is defeatist to that independent and strong mindset he is always trying to promote among Africans and Zimbabweans. You can’t love your countrymen but still want to rule over their lives forever. You don’t claim to believe in the intelligence of your people but still act like none is smart enough to handle leadership. He knows where the rain started beating us but has not done enough to make sure it does stop. He has little faith on Zimbabweans to produce another person capable of steering the country and at the same time he want them to oppose western oppression. You want your people to oppose what you think is western oppression but doesn’t consider what your are doing oppression. You gag the opposition, dwarf your people’s mindset and at the same time show them that their problem is western inflicted. Interesting!
The African Union(AU) must also minimise the exhibition of actions suggestive of double standards. When Yahaya Jammeh of Gambia lost and made successive videos accepting and rejecting the outcome, we saw how the AU sent in troops to scare him off. While we applaud the Union, one also wonders why same strategy has not being used in arresting the crises in South Sudan and other African countries with evident electoral rigging. What has the leaders of South Africa done to fight the increasing Xenophobia? A situation where police officers supervise the daylight execution of other black Africans on accusations of drug dealing does not encourage African unity. What did the AU do to serve as deterrent to other African countries from replicating the same in their country? What about the South African government? What was done to those who perpetrated the killings and what compensation was offered(even though we know lives lost can’t be bought with money)?
In Nigeria and other African countries, people are lynched for stealing foodstuffs like yam. People are lynched and burned on accusation of stealing. They are beaten with sticks, hit with stones, kicked, slapped, while people watch and capture the scene until they are burnt alive. What did the Nigeria government do? Nothing. What is AU’s stand on that? I can’t see. What happened to the killers? Nothing. What did the Nigerian people do? Nothing. Not even a protest but only online commentaries condemning and justifying the act. You know the people need mental reworking when Jungle Justice is justified. Some people who supported lynching in Nigeria cussed everyone when they heard the story of Eric Garner in America. African leaders must teach Africans that skin colour has nothing to do with intelligence or progress. They must teach Africans that human live is not valued by race. They must not distort history, ours or the rest of the world’s, or teach them how to hate or dominate other races and people.
Because we don’t bother about our History we worship false heroes and try to mimic them. But what is there to copy from a leader who never really left any positive legacy? What is there to learn from people whose lifestyles and leadership didn’t save Africa? Simple. The mediocre legacies of bloodshed and corruption that was further institutionalized. In African Democracies, young people are used as thugs not only to rig and steal ballot papers but also to take out political opponents. Men who plunder the society are hailed when they pass on the streets. Youths fight among themselves for the sake of men who plunder the city. These men are promoted in the papers and other media. The children are fed with stories of their success and the cycle continues.
I am asking that we examine those we wish to call heroes as they have great effect on our lives. Both foreign and local. From Mandela, Idi Amin, Mobutu, Nyerere to foreigners like Mahatma Gandhi. I am not asking that we despise them but that we make sure to be modelling the right people. People whose idea of progress tallies with positive human development. People who inspire greatness in us and the world. Being African is not enough. A man who claims to love Africans but betrayed by his actions and utterances shouldn’t be our hero. A man who loves Africans but despises every other race shouldn’t be our hero either. A man who loves his countrymen but despises Africans shouldn’t be our hero. Our hero doesn’t have to be perfect but he must be someone who shows no segregation in love. A Nelson Mandela type of hero is what we need.
People like Mugabe who said: “The only white man you can trust is a dead white man,” shouldn’t be our hero. People like Muhammadu Buhari who said: “God willing, if what happened in 2011 happened again(that is, rigging), dogs and baboons(Nigerian lives) will be soaked in blood”, should not be our hero. People like Gandhi who, after leaving the South African prisons said: “Kaffirs(black people) are as a rule are uncivilised – the convicts even more so. They are troublesome, very dirty and live almost like animals. Each ward contains nearly 50 to 60 of them. They often started rows and fought among themselves. The reader can easily imagine the plight of the poor Indian thrown into such company,” shouldn’t be our hero. Those who inspire us must exhibit a reasonable level of responsibility. We need study their history to avoid glorifying them. We don’t have to use hate speech on them too.
Dear Africans, intelligence is not racially transmitted. It is not something you inherently posses because you are black or white, Zulu or Xhosa, Igbo or Jews, Akan or Oromia, Indian or Chinese. It has nothing to do with how you look. Every race today worked hard to achieve their current status. Greatness is not genetic. Don’t base your promotion or rejection of some African behaviours on ignorance and lies. I strongly believe that our history has great contents that could spur development. You don’t have to despise other races to raise the awareness of Africans. Your promotion of your root, Africa, shouldn’t be rooted in the persecution of others. You don’t need despise other families because you show special love to your family. You don’t love what your family do because it is your family’s but because it makes sense. Whatever you do, whatever way you dress, whatever name you call yourself, let it be because you love what you are doing, because you love how you dress and because you love the name. Let your reason never be because it is not African or European or Asian and thus better. Let it be because it meets all the attributes of commonsense and not racially inspired. Use a foreign product because it has quality, not because it is foreign.
The Igbos of Eastern Nigeria have been called names like: The Japan of Africa and The Lost Tribes of Israel. In some quarters now, their are Igbos who strongly, even without any evidence, call themselves Jews. Even without any DNA or any other biological tests, these set of Igbos promote the idea that they are Jewish. At best, what they present is an ancestral tree from Gad to Eri. I am not against being Jewish. I am only against calling oneself what he has not biologically and scientifically shown to be true because of the notion that the name alone gives one intelligence. It has the potential for weakening one’s self esteem. The idea that aligning with a race implants all attributes of that race, both real and imagined, welcomes racial and personal disgust which dwarfs the mind and affects productivity. If the Igbos are later shown to be Jews or related, I will gladly embrace it because it is the truth and I finally found home. Any race can grow. The Jews choose to grow. Any race can succeed. And people can grow. Growth is a choice. The Jews choose growth.
As an Igbo, I’ve seen Igbo parents who deliberately refuse to teach their children the Igbo language. I’ve seen parents who will boldly tell you that speaking Igbo is ‘old school’. Others responded that ‘some kids can’t learn Igbo’ even though they never speak it to them. The kids are allowed to be fluent in English and Pidgin but not in their own language. The children grow to have a certain disdain for their own inventions. They fail to see that they are shortchanging the child. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to learn one language if you can learn two. It makes little sense to purposely refuse to teach someone how to converse with more people. It is more intelligent to learn every language you can learn. And where a child is shown many evidence that his people are currently failing and nothing is done to show where the derailing started, the child could be tempted to see it as their only story. We are making today’s story Africa’s only story and it doesn’t help us. It stripes us of our identity.
If African leaders knew their history and the history of mankind, some of the dangerous behaviour they exhibit could be eradicated. Low self esteem will be eradicated. A leader can only give what he has. A healthy leader inspires healthy behaviours in the people. They will place great value on African lives. No father who has great respect for human live will cheat his own family. No man who loves all of humanity will maltreat any of humanity. Corruption of the system for selfish gains would be seen as corruption of the self. The people will be inspired to dream big. Inferiority complex will be eradicated. If it is eradicated the human mind then gets ready for growth. In addition to treating the symptoms of our illness, we must also tackle its root cause. Once we settle our value and history issues, no one will discuss corruption anymore.