BY GEORGE KAGAME
“The Europeans and Arabs took the most talented, intelligent and creative generations of our African forefathers through slavery”, Patrick Buhungu, my young brother, told me in 2003.
“When guilt overwhelmed the Europeans, they ‘stopped’ slave trade and reinvented it with colonialism. They made Africans slaves in their own countries by introducing cash crops and mineral exports, which they sold between themselves and got richer adding onto their incomes from slave trade.”
Today slavery is replayed in the unfair trade relations that developed countries impose on poor developing countries.
Patrick at time was in the process of applying for a visa to
Before his departure to
He said, “Europeans hunted our forefathers and took them as slaves, only the excellent ones were taken…that is why
Patrick was not done, he concluded, “even those of us left here, we are voluntarily taking ourselves into slavery in
When I read Richard Oundo’s article about immigrant Africans arrested and sometime dumped on the Mediterranean Sea I was reminded of Patrick and the new form of slavery from
The Western world, which made a big business enslaving Africans forcefully, is now busy drowning them before they dock on Ocean islands. The same Europeans running around Africa, managing a myriad of NGOs to help
Without the horrors of slavery, colonialism and neo colonialism,
They also took almost fifty years to consolidate after the Second World War…even with assistance from the
As late as the 1970s, East Europeans were suffering the same fate Africans are facing on the
It is the nature of the human selfish spirit that explains why Africans are painted the way they are while traversing the seas going to look for a descent saving in
This time, the Africans are portrayed…….. (Like the grim pictures on the capsizing boats suggest) as a hopeless society unable to comprehend their problems leave alone solving them. Interestingly, the Africans believe such prejudices themselves!
Indeed, as Morgan Heritage sing in their inspirational song ‘foreign races’, “from the journey of slavery to colonialism we lost ourselves.’
To the Western eye,
This is some of what remains of the once mighty continent. This is what is fed to the Western audiences on daily basis. The same Europeans who advise us to stop playing apologetics of The Genocide, slavery and colonialism are the same people who will punish anti Semitism in their press or movies fifty years after the Holocaust!
Africa today is relayed to the rest of the world in a fashion which resembles an Anglo-Saxon tribal lore that tells the parable of the sparrow that flies into the dining hall at night, flutters about for a moment, and then wings out again. Its brief time in the light, and the darkness from which it comes and to which it goes, provides the allegory of a human life.
Samuel Doe of
The illegal immigrant Africans crossing the Mediterranean sea are not different from the Mexicans trying to jump the high electric walls into US, but African images are stand out more, because they from the dark continent carrying along dangerous epidemics and many problems.
The crude images from Africa could as well be recognizable from
The famines, plagues, and epidemics are, from old-style locusts to ultra-modern HIV/Aids, the most sweeping and devastating. The clan wars and wars of religion are the most bitter and pitiless. Human life is at its nastiest, most brutish, and shortest.
Statistics do their usual job of confirming initial impressions. Of the 20 most impoverished nations in the world, 18 are in
Richard Oundo of The New Times says the people crossing to European Countries are not illiterates; “They are educated people and sometimes from far developed countries by African standards, for example
The latter are true African people who still refuse to embrace the glitter of the modern world up to today.
The mainstream international media describe Africa as being either a safari park or an elephants’ graveyard; and that if you need a life you must go to Europe, US,
The writer is a social commentator, and also a journalist with The New Times.
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