Prior to the Island Nation’s elections, i participated on a forum where members presented various views and opinions on the government of Jamaica and how best to bring that nation out from under the boot heel of the IMF, World Bank and amurdikkklan bully tactics. As well as how to best put an end to old boy and post colonial politics. Politics…or folly tricks…that seems to be the style of governance in the Afrikan world. There are many people who hold on to the theme, stating that as a nation, the government of these countries can’t do anything that goes against the artificial mandates or laws, set out by western governments in Europe and in North amurdikkka.
Our misguided belief and acceptance of the capitalist notions, that nations must be run a particular capitalistic ( or the pseudonym democratic) way… or even more assiduous…. that the socialist’s world view, that a nation HAS to be run this other way, is not only lost on supposed Afrikan people, but also shows how out of touch, ignorant, cowardly and enslaved we are to foreign dictates. Rest assured that Jamaica is not the only nation that suffers under the imperialism of either Capitalist or Socialist system. just go back to my post on Black people and Socialism, to see my break down of the two ideology.
Former international development secretary Andrew Mitchell gave a speech on Africa’s 1 billion people stating that… “the world is moving to a freer trading regime, protectionism is declining and discredited” (A plea to fellow Tories: let’s not relive the Maastricht years, 22 February). No continent is more desperate for a freer trading regime than Africa. Yet, despite their rhetoric about supporting Africa, no other continental bloc administers a more comprehensive trade protectionists against Africa than the European Union.
The EU common agriculture policy, just like amurdikkka, enables, if not compels, EU farmers to dump their excess and cheap farm produce on African markets. These acts of international trade sabotage forces African farmers to sell their products at a loss, or leave the market altogether. And, while pushing for ever more foreign aid to Africa, the EU also imposes stiff tariffs on African agricultural imports, thus making it impossible for the continent of Africa to trade itself out of poverty. The result is the vicious cycle of poverty, war, famine, diseases and refugee exodus we are witnessing today. Last year alone, some 5,000 African men, women and children lost their lives in the Mediterranean trying to come to Europe in search of a better life. Granted, corruption and human rights abuse are additional push factors. But this scale of human tragedies was unheard of before trading with the European Economic Community became the superstate which is the EU.
When i first saw the documentary on Thomas Sankara and his impact on Pan Afrikanism, I was not only impressed by his commitment and strength of character, but on the lesser known things he did in lifting Burkino Faso, out from being a French colony, to an independent and upright people, during the 4 years he was in power. After Thomas Sankara was part of a bloodless coup that ousted Col Saye Zerbo as president in 1982, he consolidated hs power, when he took power from Maj JeanBaptiste Ouedraogo in an internal power struggle and became president in August 1983. Sankara adopted at that time radical left wing policies which sought to reduce government corruption. His first step on that course was to changed the name of the country from Upper Volta to Burkina Faso, which means “the land of upright man”.
Swiftly after renaming the country, Sankara set out in ONLY 4 YEARS to rebuild Burkino Faso, in an unprecedented and uniquely Afrikan way. We must excuse the Eurocentric labeling of Marxist revolutionary, because there was nothing in his rule that was remotely compared to what transpired since 1917 till now in Khazar controlled Russia. As well I reject when people call him “Africa’s Che Guevara”. For one thing, Che’ was about violence and violent overthrow of any sovereignty that did not ascribe to his Marxist ideology. Sankara came to power in Burkino Faso in a blood less coupe’ and was eventually murdered by his supposed best friend, who he was warned against, but instead knowingly sacrificed himself to prevent a potential civil war. Among the things Thomas Sankara accomplished in the 4 years he was president of Burkino Faso, were:
- He vaccinated 2.5 million children against meningitis, yellow fever and measles in a matter of weeks.
- He initiated a nationwide literacy campaign, increasing the literacy rate from 13% in 1983 to 73% in 1987.
- He planted over 10 million trees to prevent desertification
- He built roads and a railway to tie the nation together, without foreign aid
- He appointed females to high governmental positions, encouraged them to work, recruited them into the military, and granted pregnancy leave during education.
- He outlawed female genital mutilation, forced marriages and polygamy in support of Women’s rights
- He sold off the government fleet of Mercedes cars and made the Renault 5 (the cheapest car sold in Burkina Faso at that time) the official service car of the ministers.
- He reduced the salaries of all public servants, including his own, and forbade the use of government chauffeurs and 1st class airline tickets.
- He redistributed land from the feudal landlords and gave it directly to the peasants. Wheat production rose in three years from 1700 kg per hectare to 3800 kg per hectare, making the country food self-sufficient. He opposed foreign aid, saying that “he who feeds you, controls you.”
- He spoke in forums like the Organization of African Unity against continued neocolonialist penetration of Africa through Western trade and finance. •
- He called for a united front of African nations to repudiate their foreign debt. He argued that the poor and exploited did not have an obligation to repay money to the rich and exploiting In Ouagadougou, Sankara converted the army’s provisioning store into a state owned supermarket open to everyone (the first supermarket in the country). •
- He forced civil servants to pay one month’s salary to public projects.
- He refused to use the air conditioning in his office on the grounds that such luxury was not available to anyone but a handful of Burkinabes.
- As President, he lowered his salary to $450 a month and limited his possessions to a car, four bikes, three guitars, a fridge and a broken freezer. A motorcyclist himself, he formed an all women motorcycle personal guard.
- He required public servants to wear a traditional tunic, woven from Burkinabe cotton and sewn by Burkinabe craftsmen. (The reason being to rely upon local industry and identity rather than foreign industry and identity) @
- When asked why he didn’t want his portrait hung in public places, as was the norm for other African leaders, Sankara replied “There are seven million Thomas Sankara’s.”
- An accomplished guitarist, he wrote the new national anthem himself Sankara seized power in a 1983 popularly supported coup at the age of 33, with the goal of eliminating corruption and the dominance of the former French colonial power.
- He immediately launched one of the most ambitious programmes for social and economic change ever attempted on the African continent.
- His foreign policies were centered on antiimperialism, with his government eschewing all foreign aid, pushing for odious debt reduction, nationalizing all land and mineral wealth, and averting the power and influence of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. @@
- His domestic policies were focused on preventing famine with agrarian self-sufficiency and land reform, prioritizing education with a nationwide literacy campaign, and promoting public health by vaccinating 2.5 million children against meningitis, yellow fever, and measles.
- Other components of his national agenda included planting over ten million trees to halt the growing desertification of the Sahel, doubling wheat production by redistributing land from feudal landlords to peasants, suspending rural poll taxes and domestic rents, and establishing an ambitious road and rail construction program to “tie the nation together”.
- On the localized level Sankara also called on every village to build a medical dispensary and had over 350 communities construct schools with their own labour.
- Moreover, his commitment to women’s rights led him to outlaw female genital mutilation, forced marriages and polygamy, while appointing women to high governmental positions and encouraging them to work outside the home and stay in school even if pregnant.
- In order to achieve this radical transformation of society, he increasingly exerted authoritarian control over the nation, eventually banning unions and a free press, which he believed could stand in the way of his plans. @@@
- To counter his opposition in towns and workplaces around the country, he also tried corrupt officials,“counterrevolutionaries” and “lazy workers” in Popular Revolutionary Tribunals.
- Additionally, as an admirer of Fidel Castro’s Cuban Revolution, Sankara set up Cuban style Committees for the Defense of the Revolution (CDRs).
Notes: @ Afrika’s biggest fail, and indeed the diaspora’s biggest fail, is this reliance on foreign industry and foreign identity, instead of local industry and identity. Everyday I read about some barefoot, Afrikan teen, who created a windmill from scrap metal, 13 year old girls creating a generator that runs on urine and numerous other innovations, that with governmental support, could be of immense benefit to local and neighboring communities. Yet these governments still purchase foreign items at exorbitant rates
@@ If the the price of getting a personal loan is putting your car up as collateral, is something that the individual willingly does, why then does he also willingly gives away the car, as a condition of getting that loan? Even though he knows giving that car away, would be detrimental to his employment, which in turn would prevent him from paying off that loan? Well..welcome to structural loan adjustment.
@@@ I am all for a heavy hand, against internal interference, to implement a program that is progressive. A leader with vision and the balls to pursue it, should not have to have ass holes, interfering with his movements every single step of the way. This notion that Afrikan countries HAVE TO run democratically, as espoused by the corrupted democracies in the west, hampers man a progressive leaders and programmes. This has been plaguing Afrikan countries for decades, because opposition parties either have their own agenda or are puppets of foreign entities.
Sankara’s revolutionary programs for African self-reliance made him an icon to many of Africa’s poor. Thomas Sankara remained popular with most of his country’s impoverished citizens. However his policies alienated and antagonized the vested interests of an array of groups, that never had Burkino Faso’s health, foremost in their hearts. These included the small but powerful middle class, the tribal leaders whom he stripped of the long held traditional right to forced labour and tribute payments, and France and its ally the Ivory Coast. As a result, he was overthrown and assassinated in a bloody coup d’état led by the bought puppet and traitor Blaise Compaoré on October 15, 1987. A week before his murder, he declared: “While revolutionaries as individuals can be murdered, you cannot kill ideas.”
Personally I would rather my enemies die, while i continue to carry on implementing my revolutionary ideas, for I have an aversion to go quietly into the night. Compaoré immediately reversed the nationalizations, overturned nearly all of Sankara’s policies, rejoined the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to bring in, as he claimed, “desperately needed” funds to restore the “shattered” economy. The treacherous dog ultimately spurned most of Sankara’s legacy. Compaoré’s dictatorship remained in power for 27 years until overthrown by popular protests in 2014. A transformational leader Sankara’s visionary leadership turned his country from a sleepy West African nation with the colonial designation of Upper Volta to a dynamo of progress under the proud name of Burkina Faso (“Land of the Honorable People”). He led one of the most ambitious programs of sweeping reforms ever seen in Africa. It sought to fundamentally reverse the structural social inequities inherited from the French colonial order.
Sankara focused the state’s limited resources on the marginalized majority in the countryside. When most Afrikan countries depended on imported food and external assistance for development, Sankara championed local production and the consumption of locally made goods. He firmly believed that it was possible for the Burkinabè, with hard work and collective social mobilization, to solve their problems: chiefly scarce food and drinking water. In Sankara’s Burkina, no one was above farm work, or graveling roads–not even the president, government ministers or army officers.
Intellectual and civic education were systematically integrated with military training and soldiers were required to work in local community development projects. Sankara disdained formal pomp and banned any cult of his personality. He could be seen casually walking the streets, jogging or conspicuously slipping into the crowd at a public event. He was a rousing orator who spoke with uncommon candor and clarity and did not hesitate to publicly admit mistakes, chastise comrades or express moral objections to heads of powerful nations, even if it imperiled him. For example, he famously criticized French president François Mitterand during a state dinner for hosting the leader of Apartheid South Africa.
Today the closest thing to a Thomas Sankara, so far is not Robert Mugabe, but New Tanzania President John Magufuli. Granted what he is doing is nothing compared to what Sankara did. And Tanzania is still beholding to foreign interference. Here are some of the things John Magufuli has done already in LESS THAN A MONTH. Not in 3 or 6 years, one month. He’s shown a clear commitment to walk the talk but not to talk and talk and talk and talk more like we do here:
- Soon after his election, Magufuli declared there would be no celebration of Independence Day on 9 December because it would be “shameful” to spend huge sums of money on the celebrations when people were dying of cholera. Instead, the day has been set as a national day of cleanliness, and the money will go toward street¬cleaning services. He has said everybody should pick up their tools and clean their backyards.
- After his first official visit to the Muhimbili Hospital, and seeing the horrible state it was in, he ordered over 200 million shillings marked for “parliament parties” be used to pay for beds for people lying on the floor and sharing beds.A few days later 300 beds were delivered. He dismissed the governing board and got a new team in place, and within days the broken MRI was fixed. He also pared down his inauguration party from $100,000 to $7,000 and sent the extra money to the hospital.
- Three days into his term, Magufuli announced a ban on all foreign travel by government officials. They have been instructed to instead make regular visits to rural areas to learn and help solve problems facing everyday Tanzanians. All tasks that required officials to travel abroad would instead be done by high commissioners and ambassadors who are already in place.
- He has restricted all first¬ and business class travel to government officials, except the president, vice¬president and prime minister.
- There will be no more workshops and seminars in expensive hotels when there are so many ministry board rooms available.
- He suspended the Tanzania Revenue Authority’s chief and other officials pending investigations after a visit by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa to the port of Dar es Salaam found 350 containers listed in its books were missing.
- When he had to travel 600km to Dodoma, from Dar, to officially open parliament last week, he didn’t order a private jet – instead, he chose to drive.
- At the National Assembly in Dodoma last week he clearly sent out the message that it will not be business as usual under his leadership.
- He promised to cut public spending, fight corruption and enhance accountability in public service. He said it is time for Tanzanians to walk the talk.
- Magufuli reportedly told parliamentary leaders that the people of Tanzania want him to solve their problems and not make speeches.
My brother Kushite Kingdom, pend this post about what is currently happening in Zimbabwe, under Robert Mugabe. While we get excited about him taking black lands from the savages, he is allowing the scavengers to swoop in and take back these same lands, because they were willing to give him up front money, to make his big splash. Most of us are behind the eight ball when dealing with the ruthless business aggression of the savages. Trust me, I would rather deal with the savages, because the scavengers are way more conniving and ruthless. Unlike Sanakra, there are no Afrikan leaders that play with the international big wigs, from a position of power or control.
Then again, being in his 90’s maybe Mugabe saw what happened to Hugo Chavez and what happened to Argentina after his murder. Maybe he decided he wanted go out differently. Reforms, like revolution, does not have to be on the scale of Russia, France or even Zimbabwe, though. It can be on the scale of a Rwanda, post massacre, Burkino Faso or even Tanzania. It requires serious, committed leaders, with a local plan for the nation, not based on western models, but on Afrikan ones. Failure to do that all the Afrikan countries in the world with valuable exploitable resources, will continue to be fucked like that $2 trick in a back ally, by a succession of filthy, nasty faceless johns. Used up, depleted and then cast aside.