For starters, Africa experienced the worst case of forced migration in human history as a result of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the resulting slave economy established in North and South America and the Caribbean for upwards of three centuries.Second, European imperialists’ forcible occupation and ruthless exploitation of most of Africa in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries weakened the structures and fabrics of African societies and communities by allowing European colonial governments in Africa and their collaborators (the European oligopolies) to transfer vast fortunes from Africa to Europe in the form of artworks.
Most contemporary commentators on Africa, including Africans, bemoan the continent’s chronic poverty and the fact that Africa is the only continent that has not succeeded in any measurable way in pushing back the frontiers of poverty since the 1980s, as if there is something genetically wrong with Africa and its citizens.Unfortunately, these self-righteous commentators, some of whom pose as experts, fail to recognize the devastating cumulative impact that Europe’s unwanted and rapacious incursion into our shores has had on the structures, processes, norms, and values that prevail in contemporary African societies.While it is obvious that colonial regimes laid the foundation for Africa’s backwardness, successive African governments since independence have done much irreparable damage to the continent’s development.
An atmosphere of demoralization now pervades the entire continent which, to all intents and purposes, appears targeted for destruction. Meaningful research and policy debate about Africa’s crisis have become nearly impossible, and numerous competent and serious studies have little chance of being published in the near future.Instant corrupt memorabilia and junk journalism appear to have obeyed nature’s law by filling the gaping vacuum! As Steve Maraboli once said, ‘at the end of the day, there should be no excuses, no explanations…’ because, in the words of John Wooden, “your friends don’t need them, and your foes won’t believe them.”
This is why, at this auspicious time, this organization, Africa Dialogue Mission (ADM), has come on board to encourage a robust intellectual dialogue among contemporary African intellectuals.The goal of this adventure is to ensure that African problems are solved amicably by Africans: we do not need to take our domestic, regional, or continental grievances to London, Washington, or Paris before finding common ground, and we do not need to take up arms against each other because we are siblings from the same womb of mother Africa. Our issues must be addressed in a round-table setting through concrete and altruistic dialogue.
On that note, I welcome every African citizen to this intellectual space. What actions do you believe should be taken to improve the lives of your fellow citizens? You are more than welcome to make a contribution.Please keep in mind that the use of abusive language or biased opinion will not be tolerated in any way. We must respect each other’s viewpoints and respond to issues in an altruistic manner, not with a biased mind or political affiliation. REMEMBER, POVERTY HAS NO ETHNIC, POLITICAL, OR RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION?
Let us all come together and learn from our crisis’ lessons to avoid a recurrence of intellectual, cultural, economic, and political slavery. A country that does not comprehend the magnitude of its crisis will be unable to comprehend the required solution or properly chart a comfortable and crisis-free future. I wish you a pleasant dialogue.
“There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to helping others without expecting anything in return.”