The online outrage that met the Chinese Hubei Provincial Museum in Wuhan for hosting a photo exhibition that equated Africans to wild animals should be lauded. It shows that Africa can no longer be passive to racial slurs.
The continent should with equal vigour defend its citizens against injustice, treatment as second-rate citizens and exclusionary politics. African employees in Saudi Arabia are tortured, maimed, abused, murdered and robbed of their travel documents by their employers. Their home governments do not take any action. In 1999, the Austrian government ordered the deportation of a Nigerian, Mr. Marcus Omofuma, on flimsy grounds. Police officers allegedly beat him and suffocated him aboard a plane. His home country was not moved.
If we engage in acts such as not valuing our nationals, starving our citizenry while selling millions of acres of land to feed populations in China, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Qatar among others; dividing ourselves along Anglophone, Lucophone and Francophone lines; rising up against our African brothers and sisters in xenophobic attacks or tribal affiliations, we shall never be respected. While we must stand up for our rights, we must avoid perpetuating the same arrogance that we are decrying.