The Brexit Vote: Which Way for Africa?

Published on 28th June 2016

The outcome of the Brexit vote has doubtlessly sent economic shockwaves in the European Union and the global market. On one hand, the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union threatens to break up Britain, destabilize the EU and create a gaping crack in the liberal international order at a time when leadership is required in the wake of severe threats from violent extremist groups. On the other hand, there is hope for the United Kingdom to rise from the challenges of exiting the EU as Singapore did. When England could not afford to return a third of all its colonies' reserves held by the Exchequer and resorted to ingeniously use Currency Devaluation to shelter herself from near collapse, Singapore Prime Minister Lew Kuan Yew took a bold step, severed relationship with the Commonwealth and moved to develop Singapore without relying on England’s support and approval. Singapore’s Per capita is highest of all former colonies and almost twice that of her former colonial master England. Lew held that those in leadership need not bow to any foreign interest except in a mutual agreed relationship where there is neither victor nor vanquished.

The UK has decided. The African Union and existing Regional Economic Zones -- whose push for the free movements of goods and labour, visa-free regimes and open borders are loosely modelled on the presumed success of the European Union -- must re-examine their templates with a view of offering value and consolidating intra-Africa partnerships.

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