Uniting Africa is a task that must be done and its the responsibilty of us all to do so!
The founding fathers of most African countries, those that forth for the continents independents all had the vision of unity for the continent and as such there was an unimaginable level of unity, togetherness or oneness among Africans. This was the case within their different borders, the unity and togetherness was one of the factors that many philosophers thought would lead the great continent of the Black people to a whole new level of development. These would set the continent on the path for economical, socially, and political development. But unfortunately, the fading phase of this unity might become the downfall of many African nations.
From the systems in which most of us were born to the systems that are responsible for the current mayhem, we can agree that it was better to live in the world back then than it is now. Almost everything is not only westernized, but Africa appear to be losing to a way of life that is alien to Africa, which is also not the best for the continent, if its to maintain its originality and the way country’s out of Africa views the continent. This important so that observers around the world would not describe the Africa today as a continent of chaos.
First forward, Africa has 21 dictatorships as of today and has many presidents that have ruled for a long period of time and it seems that they are not yet going to step down save for Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe who stepped down a few days ago. Many people in the elite circles often blame the failing political systems or the absence of togetherness today. In many African states it’s now a situation of ‘each man on his own.’ Ghana’s first president, Kwame Nkrumah’s speech at the founding of the OAU has since become a classic, even iconic. In the presence of 31 African heads of state who met in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on 24 May 1963, Nkrumah appealed, cajoled, and did everything in perhaps his greatest speech ever to convince his colleagues to go the whole hog and create a strong continental union. Sadly, they decided otherwise and we as Africans are still paying the hefty price.
“African uniting should be upheld by the different African countries, there is no time to waste. I am confident that by our concerted effort and determination, we shall lay here the foundations for a continental Union of African States”- (Kwame Nkrumah)
Perhaps, the same dream that Nelson Mandela had when he dreamt of the realization of African Unity or the United States of Africa that Muammar Ghadaffi thought of which would have been a definitive blueprint for a strong, but so far sadly elusive, African unity. This sadly again was the dream of Tanzania’s founding president Julius Nyerere 34 years after Nkrumah’s 1963 speech.
“…And our weakness is pathetic. Unity will not end our weakness, but until we unite, we cannot even begin to end that weakness,” Julius Nyerere, said in his speech.
It is sad that Africa, the continent that gave birth to togetherness and unity has become a continent suffering the problems of lack of unity which is very much rooted from people’s homes and hearts, from the xenophobia in South Africa, to growing political wars in Kenya and Burundi. The generation that led Africa to political freedom has fast faded. That was the same generation that foresaw the problems each of our countries is facing. Unity was proposed, though sadly, hatred brews in our minds to the extent that we are leading to the downfall of our own countries because we have failed to put aside our differences and work together towards political stability thus economic and social development.
We are not cowards, we are not afraid. We are just too busy minding our own business we have forgotten to create a better future for our kids and great grand kids. I see this in Uganda, I see this is many African states- Nyerere, Mandela, Muammar, Nkrumah must be angry if they look back to what Africa has become.