Africans Must Resist Bandit Economies

Published on 13th September 2016

A report instigated by Hollywood actors George Clooney and Don Cheadle has accused the political elite in South Sudan of profiteering while the country is divided by a civil war. The report says the leaders of warring parties exploit the ethnic-based conflict to benefit. The report comes hot on the heels of allegations by South Sudan analysts that members of the IGAD have vested self-interests in the continent’s youngest nation.

The report is an indictment to African leaders who run bandit economies that benefit a minority and impoverish a large section of the populace. Just recently, President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria lamented that what this government inherited from his predecessors was no savings, no infrastructure, no power, no rail, no road and no security.African leaders need to put their act together and put the interest of their countries on the front sit.

On the other hand, foreign countries from Europe and Asia must stop their role in the continent’s downward by operating in cahoots with incumbent leaders to strike political and economic deals that jeopardize the welfare of respective Africa countries. In Francophone Africa, for example, French companies are given first preference in the award of government contracts even if respective African countries can obtain better value for money elsewhere. In Côte d’Ivoire, for example, French companies control a host of industries and major utilities. When all is said and done, the onus to restore Africa’s dignity rests on Africans themselves.

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