Why is the scramble by some of our leaders and civil servants to rob our Treasury so embarrassing?
The question originates from the fact that because, although ours is the poorest of the continents, its civil servants are doing everything to ensure that we remain in free fall towards the abyss of poverty.
We are the world’s laughing stock. Many non-Africans still link the delinquency of some of Africa’s leaders to some Darwinian deficiency in black people’s genes.
And, the Eurocentric intelligentsia does not wish to speak aloud about the central role that Eurocentrics have played during the 500 years of world hegemony in moulding the totally degenerate mentality of Africa’s elite.
In that mentality lays the answer to some troubling questions. In 1966, Kenya was ahead of South Korea in everything! What happened that, in 2009, Kenya lags far behind of South Korea and the gap is widening apace?
Indeed, what happened that Uganda and Ghana were, in the early 1960s, at par with Canada, yet Canada today is a member of the mighty G8?
You would expect the leaders of the world’s poorest region to play the vanguard role in the fragility and hard-nosed investment with which we need in order to catch up with our erstwhile peers in Asia.
Somehow lamely, Steve Rose, Richard Lewontin and Lean Kamin have, since long ago, given an effective reply to Richard Dawkins and other white supriorists in biology.
It is not in our Genes. In all societies, personal wealth is a primary motive for seeking political power. All Anglo-Saxon statesmen are known to be well-paid political envoys of the business corporations, and many have of recent been heavily implicated in the parliamentary expenses scandal.
Their African counterparts differ only in their singular absence of sophistication.
The Eurocentric statesman is much better schooled in the art of cheating. True, he lies as grotesquely as we do. But, he can drape it well in the political haute couture of freedom of speech, democracy, human rights, and development.
He can thus sell his political wares easily in the consumer market of politics that we call elections. He is much more conscious of the set ways of doing things….. the rules governing the conduct of public officials.
Their collective interests: Though the Eurocentric standards of behaviour affect profit, the corporations generally demand them because any deviation is likely to injure their collective interests.
Individually, of course, even the corporations flout those rules through corruption, injustice to labour, unfair trade practices, bribery of government officials, etc.
Yet, they cannot seek to remove those laws because society would immediately degenerate into anarchy, production come to a halt, and profits go with the wind.
What the corporate paymaster will not entertain is for the politicians to do things that might rock the boat, such as MPs rewarding themselves way above the economy’s general pay structure.
For this would cause unnecessary social tension and vitiate all attempts at social upliftment. If the Parliamentarians in the developed world habitually set their emoluments way above even the private sector’s; if they exempted themselves from tax; if they set up such cash cows as constituency development funds, it would rock the political system and do grievous harm to the economy.
The system in the developed countries pays the political leadership enough perks to shield them from providential worries that might adversely affect their performance. But their basic salaries are at par with those of other walks of life.
Thus, money wise, there is nothing attractive in being an MP in the developed world.
Only in Africa, do individuals seek to enter parliament purely because it is the easiest way of getting rich overnight for doing virtually nothing. Many of our MPs are seriously unemployable elsewhere.
Yet, all are multimillionaires. Former colonizers imposed on us parliaments supposed to ensure discipline and efficiency in national resource tapping and allocation. They were supposed to ensure that nothing was spent without any democratic approval.
Fritter our money away: What we got was a cash guzzler which licenses the executive to fritter our money away in a splurge of consumption; legalizes the looting of the treasury and looks on as the finance bosses impose even heavier taxes on citizens even as they rush with indignity to plead for more development aid. We elect parliaments whose only task is to rob the electors….the most painful leeches on our national skins, parasites who clamour for the bodies of our nations already long condemned to death by hunger and malnutrition.
The wonder is that we, Africans, take this absolute injustice with total equanimity.
Since we know that the governments will not stir to clean up their own Augean stables, isn’t time we stopped moaning and took some really decisive action against parliaments?