I have a dream for Africa!

As a New African,I refuse to be poor. As a New African,I refuse to be misgoverned. As a New African,I totally refuse to be suffocated by the petty politics of malice, hatred, disillusionment, chicanery and corruption. I see hope in Africa.I have a dream for Africa.

I dream of an Africa that is wholly liberated and thus, free from tyranny ,corruption and greed. I dream of an Africa that is at peace with herself.I dream of an Africa that is politically and economically developed.I dream of an Africa that is free from hunger and disease.

An Africa that will take its rightfull place amongst other continents as a continent of hope and joy and not a continent ravaged by poverty,war and disease.I have a dream for Africa.

As a Pan-Africanist and Zimbabwean patriot to the bare bones,I am not about to give up on Africa.Where others might see hopelessness, despair and desolution, I have chosen to see hope and a bright future ahead of us.Whilst I pay tribute to the founding fathers and mothers of African nationalism,I am also quick to point out their shortcomings and acknowledge that just like any other human being made of flesh and blood,the pioneers of African nationalism were not and indeed, could not have been perfect.

Under very difficult circumstances presented by a ruthless and racist colonial system,the pioneers of African nationalism were brave enough to confront the mean and ruthless colonial machine and demand self-governance and independence for the hitherto oppressed African people.For that reason,I will forever be grateful to the founding fathers of African nationalism; the likes of Kwame Krumah,Julius Nyerere, Jomo Kenyatta, Kenneth Kaunda, Gamel Abdel Nassar and many others.I have a dream for Africa.

I have no kind words for African nationalists who eventually mutated into tin pot dictators and tyrants.For that was not the founding vision of African nationalism and Pan – Africanism. Oppression is oppression whether it is practised by a white man or a black man.

No amount of sugar coating and propaganda can justify oppression and dictatorship.Essentially,a dictatorship thrives on fear of the people.A dictatorship is characteristically fearful of the people that it purports to represent. A dictatorship is morbidly inward-looking and therefore, fearfully insecure.

Once in a while a dictatorship will devour its own children.Indeed, a dictatorship has this rather uncanny and bizarre tendency to cannibalise its own.I have a dream for Africa.

With a population of 1,1 billion people and blessed with every natural resource that one can think of, Africa has absolutely no reason to be poor.More than half a century after the first pillars of colonialism were dismantled in such African countries such as Ghana and Senegal,Africa has no excuse to continue to blame the erstwhile colonisers for the prevailing poverty and rampant corruption that generally defines contemporary Africa.

In 1957,Ghana 's Gross Domestic Product ( GDP) was higher than the GDP of Singapore and Hong Kong. But today, we all know that both Singapore and Hong Kong, former colonies themselves, have managed to transform themselves into economic tigers with sophisticated diversified economies and very high living standards for their citizens.

Ghana remains a typical developing economy with a rudimentary economic infrastructure and endemic poverty amongst the generality of its people. The same applies for Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon and the majority of African countries that attained independence more than forty (40) years ago.Where did Africa get it wrong? Is Africa a cursed continent? Is Africa destined to be poor, misgoverned and corrupt? I have a dream for Africa.

First of all, Africa has to look at herself hard in the mirror; introspect and try to diagonise why she has failed to keep pace with the other continents.Why has Africa allowed the former colonisers and oppressors to ride roughshod over her own interests? Why has Africa virtually abdicated from its responsibility of responsible leadership and good governance? Why has Africa allowed Somalia to be a lawless country? Why has some African dictators and like-minded tyrants run down their countries and privatised all their countries's wealth?

Africa has to wake up and smell the coffee.Whther Aftica looks East or West is neither here nor there.There is so-called market-driven capitalism in the West and indeed, there is also State-driven capitalism in the East; particularly in China.Capitalism is capitalism whether it has a Western flavour or an Eastern flavour.Africa should neither look West or East.Africa should look everywhere.America is Africa essentially to push its own hegemonistic agenda; and so is China.There is no free lunch for Africans.I have a dream for Africa.

As Africans, we are own liberators.Noone is going to be '' friends'' with Africa just for the sake of it.This world is fast globalising and if we are not careful, Africa will again be reduced and condemned into a hunting ground for the world's superpowers as they compete to grab our natural resources and in the process,to condemn Africa into a perpetual state of penury, poverty,ignorance and disease.We should clean our systems of governance and ensure that the scourge of corruption, particularly in the public sector,is eliminated.

Africa has a sizeable number of the world's billionaires but the averaghe African leaves on less than a dollar a day.Most African politicians take public service as essentially an exercise in self-enrichment and personal aggrindisement. This is wrong. Do not get into politics in order to get rich; rather, get into politics in order to play a meaningfull role in designing and implementing systems of good governance for the benefit of the generality of the people.I do not trust someone who gets into politics poor as a church mouse and in no time, becomes s rich as Warren Buffett! I have a dream for Africa.

My mission in politics is to contirbute, in my own small but meaningfull way,to the development of my country Zimbabwe and my continent Africa.I want nothing less and nothing more.I feel that I have a generational challenge to do something for my motherland.

I know that my time to go back to Negona Chambers to practise law on a full-time basis shall come as my generation gives slowly gives way to the younger generations that came after us.We should learn, as Africans, to pass the baton from one generation to the other.I will call this system generational transformation and regeneration.

Africa is too rich to be poor.I have a dream for Africa.

Obert Gutu is the Senator for Chisipite in Harare and also the Deputy Minister of Justice & Legal Affairs. He is the MDC Harare provincial spokesperson and also the Goodwill Ambassador for Justice for the Africa Heritage Society.

Post published in: Opinions & Analysis

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