AFRICA SELLS ITS DIGNITY AND PRIDE Part 1

 

I decided to go break from writing to psychologically accommodate the ecstasy and elation in me, having been crowned the best student writer, 2017, in the National Union of Ghana Students Award night put together by UEW-K branch. I'm most grateful to the good Lord. In today's piece I decided to use this controversial title to preach Pan Africanism. I keep asking myself why Africa is lagging behind though we keep yearning for progress and prosperity at a time we are suffering from economic catastrophes, lamentable developmental progress and moral decadence with its accompanying social vices. These issues keep embittering me and some times, make me feel like we are living in a world of cognitive subconsciousness and convoluted society with it social and moral values completely eroded. Hmmm No wonder, we are where we are!Firstly, any research about why Africa still remains an undeveloped continent would not be complete if it does not critically trace the historical antecedents of our social and political set up as well as the chronology of  metamorphoses accompanying the occupation of the African continent by the "white man" and the repercussions of their well orchestrated colonization. Though this piece is not an academic research work, I am not oblivious of that basic fact. It is a verifiable fact that Africa was very rich, economically resilient and relatively peaceful with strong social bonds before the white man's influence. I can't still fathom how gullible we were, to have subjected ourselves to manipulation by the white man, which has adversely affected us in every faculty of our lives. That notwithstanding, we still had enough time to examine the losses immediately after colonisation but it is obvious that we can't simply revisit our African values, to reshape our identities.

One very big damage the white man caused us, is the introduction of western culture through religion. They undermined and despised our very rich culture, and described it as "primitive". We gave up  so cheaply and sole our dignity and pride to them. Is it that the white man had injected some long lasting drug into our brain boxes to make us unable to reason? Under the cloaks of Christianity, we were gradually deceived to sell our spiritual powers to them. Powers they are now using to control us like remote controls. The proliferation of churches in Africa today, has still not done enough to shape the attitude and morality of society. We rather continue to encounter alarming rates of social vices. No wonder prostitution, same sex marriage, war among others have come to find a comfortable place among us.

The black man could produced whatever he wanted to use and produced what he eats but today we cannot say same yet we cannot still see. We continue to import whatever we wear and eat. People are proud of foreign goods and despises our own. We ignorantly continue to create employment in foreign countries and deprive ourselves with improved standard of living. The worse of it all, is the political confusion among us, couple with leadership paralysis, catalysing our problems. As chunua Achebe put it in his book, things falls apart, " the centre cannot hold". The people who are supposed to be the ambassadors of change of attitude are in the comfort of their luxurious green pastures, enjoying the ungodly fruits of corruption.

Africans were noted of their very strong social bonds from the family, clan, community and tribe. Today,  it is indisputable fact that such a cherished social bond that instilled love among us is disintegrated. They brought the nuclear family system, and then democracy and succeeded in indoctrinating us.

Today, in some parts of the continent, we are fighting and killing ourselves and spilling blood all over. What a pathetic situation! With all these, we still cannot see, that we need our cherished African values.

We had inherited a Europeanized education system long ago and have since not being able to localized it. The early formal education was mainly meant to train Africans to speak and interpret the language of the whites so as to join the crusade of diminishing the value of our culture. Perhaps that is why we are only good at speaking flamboyant English language and shamelessly take pride in that. Unfortunately, we have lived with it for decades and and are producing only English speaking graduates instead of problem solving graduates. Well, the African educational structure is another subject matter I will fully elucidate subsequently in another article.

Let's look at our natural resources and how they are being tapped by foreigners. In my country Ghana, they are foreigners all over our green forest depleting our resources through illegal lumbering and illegal mining. Our water bodies are polluted and we are a testimony to the climatic ramifications but we are still playing around the gallery with political rhetorics. We are so helpless and cannot profess any pragmatic remedy. What happened to the curses from our rivers, deities and shrines? If western culture is giving us this unbearable pain by contributing to our abject poverty, why don't we revisit our culture? I will support it wholeheartedly!!

The most common issue that even make us a laughing stock to the rest of the world, is our political leadership. Leadership coated with loot and share through gargantuan corruption, abuse of power, dictatorship and political violence. Yes! that is political leadership in Africa. It is about winner takes all, survival of the fittest and the worse of all, divide and rule. All these are throwing away the dignity of Africa. We must be leaving under a curse.

In the midst of all these, continental leadership like the African Union, remains a toothless dog that cannot only unite the continent but can't even address political crisis in some member countries. Leaders in the continent rather secretly make allies with other forces in other continents, leaving to themselves, shamelessly, a questionable loyalty to the African continent.

I think  the problems of the continent ranging from education, unemployment, moral decadence, poor political leadership among others, are uncontrollably unbearable as they continue to escalate daily. We need to adopt a radically paradigm shift from our current approaches of depending on so called developed countries to solving our problems, to a more rejuvenated self attitudinal approach. We don't need any skyrocketing science to do that!! We have the solutions right in our homes. We need to apply them. It is better late than never.

Shall be back.................
Denis Andaban

denisandaban@gmail.com

Author: Denis Andaban

Denis Andaban is a young writer and practising journalist. He is also a young teacher who has an unrepentant passion for writing. He has written feature articles ranging from politics, social issues, academic and relationship. He also writes news for many online media portals. Currently, He is reading B A English Language Education at the University of Education, Winneba, Kumasi. Denis Andaban is a native of Fian in the Upper West Region

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