RE: “KK’s arrest and Uhuru’s ICC case: Calibrating Pan-Africanism” (The New Times, September 14).
Thanks to Lonzen Rugira for a very good article. Pan-Africanism has a history of being elitist and very close to power structures; in certain circumstances it was even used to advance individual political benefits until it lost its relevance.
At this stage, I would hypothesise that a survey on the awareness of Pan-Africanism in higher learning institutions would show a complete lack of understanding of what the movement means among African students and many would even frown at it as some kind of outdated backward concept.
A situation like this can easily explain the mass of Africans who have lost faith in themselves and in the potential of their continent and choose rather to die in the sea seeking the hyped and glamorised western civilisation paradise.
Currently, Africa faces severe challenges of poverty, diseases, inequality, wars… These challenges can only be fought through change in mindset. The change in mindset can’t be possible when Africans are still using western perspectives to resolve all their problems; in many places they can’t fathom to handle simple national issues without seeking western guidance and support.
These strange behaviours are the results of Stockholm syndrome (Wikipedia: a psychological phenomenon in which hostages [read Africa, Ed.] express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors [read the west, Ed.], sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors) resulting from historical and current overt and non-overt form of abuses.
Pan-Africanism is an essential remedy to assist people suffering from Stockholm syndrome as it is effective in building self-discovery, self-esteem, and identification with peer Africans, self-reliance, sovereignty…
For this purpose, Pan-Africanism has to be taught and discussed about in schools, at grassroots levels among the youth organisations and other sections of society.