three days ago in 1972, the father of the Pan-African movement Dr Kwame Nkrumah left earth, joining our ancestors.
Although he has passed, his ideologies are deeply rooted across the diaspora. Apart from statues being build in his name, his legacy and ideology for a inter-dependent Africa lives, yet is on life support due to issues of political instability, dependence to the west which results in Neo-colonialism.
In his book Challenge of the Congo(1966) Nkrumah described that the basis of political and economic change is to adopt global socialism, as the environment (according to his perspective in his era) is that there is a tiny fraction of people who become richer at the cost of poor people getting poorer.
“as long as capitalism and imperialism go unchecked there will always be exploitation, and an ever-widening gap between the haves and the have-nots, and all the evils of imperialism and neo-colonialism which breed and sustain wars.” he warned, as if he peeked through today’s political climate and world order.
Although Africa has achieved political independence, we’re still clenched at the hands of the west and among ourselves due to our lack of unity, violence and discrimination all due to our lack of economic freedom. Our dependence of exports and investment from developed countries have closed possible opportunities to establish formative relations to other African countries, mostly looking at each other’s economic muscle as competition and not complimentary opportunity.
Instead of assisting each country in times of need, we tend to look solely towards donors from the west, which are resultant in control of our own success. Our reliance and lack of interdependence caused rifts that Nkrumah warned us about. “History has shown that where the Great Powers cannot colonize, they balkanize. This is what they did to the Austro-Hungarian Empire and this is what they have done and are doing in Africa. If we allow ourselves to be balkanized, we shall be re-colonized and be picked off one after the other.” he said.
If his words do not raise with you look at your continent’s climate. We are not colonized, yet separated by borders and ideas of which countrymen we should not relate to. Xenophobia, Afrophobia, terrorism and islamophobia tred over our African ideologies because we have chosen not to emancipate ourselves from colonial ties in business. I am not saying we need to completely extinguish relations with countries outside Africa – as that will isolate ourselves and cause further segregation in a globalizing world. I simply state that we must take heed to Nkrumah’s ideologies, and learn that the freedom we seek lies not within our division, but our unity.