UNGA@2023: The Hypocrisy Of African And Western Leaders Over Investments In Africa

By Franklin Ogude

UNGA@2023: The Hypocrisy Of African And Western Leaders Over Investments In Africa
UNGA 2023

At the just concluded United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) African leaders called for a global finance revolution  to drive climate change, with concerns that political uncertainties may make potential investors wary.

The Kenya’s President William Ruto at the event said there was an inaccurate  perception  that investments in African countries are risky, therefore  unfairly holding back the flow of funds needed, saying there was the need to rethink, to reimagine and reconfigure the approach  to  financial markets.

He added that the building blocks of financial markets-such as credit rating agencies, sovereign debt analysis, and risk analysis-required a “rethink” and new approaches were needed to provide concessional finance.

Nigeria’s President Bola  Tinubu called for a change in approach to investment opportunities during his address to the UNGA. He said,”Continental efforts regarding climate change will register important victories if established economies were more forthcoming with public and private sector investment for Africa’s preferred  initiative”.

However, behind closed doors at the event complaints of  perceived risk associated with governance and rule of law in Africa, following some pockets of military coup action in  West and Central Africa sub-region became the preoccupation of the political and business leaders attending the General Assembly.

It beats the imagination why Africa political and business leaders should see coup in Africa as a risk to foreign direct investment. It still boils down to the colonization of thought and sense. When did Democracy as a system as forced down the throats of Africans by the West become a condition for leadership success?

Many best economies in the world do not run the western democracy yet they are doing better the imperial democrats.Japan runs a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government based on separation of power. The Emperor is the symbol of the state and performs only ceremonial duties; since 1954, China has maintained a one-party state structure with the constitutional provision as “People’s Democratic Dictatorship” officially called socialist consultative democracy; the United Arab Emirate(UAE)and their regional sister, run monarchial system of government. 

Therefore, where western democracy fails Africans and they resolved to evolve their peculiar system of governance that addresses their challenges why should it bear a burden or risk to visitors or investors? A western democracy that is a rape of conscience, fundamental human rights with the tacit support of the west to loot the countries and continent dry! A democracy where a leader makes his position hereditary against the will and choice of his people! Some of the western imposed African leaders have remained on seat for over thirty and forty years with nothing to show in the economy and the political space. Is this not more dreadful and deadly than the feared military junta?

Why the fear over the military rule? In Africa, it has been more development oriented than the west- imported democracy.   

It is believed that the military regime has done more good than damage to Nigeria, and even performed better than any other form of government since its inception in Africa as a whole.

The first of its kind in Africa was in Egypt, on July 23, 1952, when King Farouk was overthrown by Abdel Gamal Nasser and Mohammed Naguib, while the first in West Africa was in Togo on January 13, 1963, when President Sylvanus Olympio was killed. Nigeria was not left out as it recorded its first military coup on January 15, 1966, putting an end to the first republican government.

The military has brought evident changes in their time and dispensations as seen in the time of Yakubu Gowon for instance, who brought about the creation of 12 states, and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in 1973. These initiatives were part of his efforts to unify the regions and ethnic nationalities of the country following the end of the civil war that lasted from 1967 to 1970. This war almost left the country in tatterdemalion.

For many years, Africans have been forced to live like people with no governing bodies, with people making rules and bending them in their favour under the veneer of democracy. In recent times, African countries are taking up their rights and overthrowing kleptocratic and egocentric leaders who are out to achieve their selfish whims and caprices.

Niger, Guinea, Mali and a few African countries have carried out a successful coup lately. Now, the people of Gabon among others, are in jollity as power has been toppled from President Ali Bongo who took over from his father, Ali Bongo in 2009. His father ruled from 1967 till his death and Bongo has been in power up until August 30, 2023, when he was forcefully evicted by the Gabonese army.

Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. This is what the media is out to do: checkmate the excesses of the government and act as watchdogs. But, is there freedom of expression for thinkers? We keep asking.

The current way suggests that other African countries like Nigeria may one day be next as the people in power live like demigods, allowing the electorates to feed through their noses.

Africa as a whole needs a diarchy; a system where both military and civilians rule side-by-side to checkmate each other’s excesses. Nigeria can be better! Africa can be better! If only we put our heads together and fight corruption. This does not mean there are no corrupt military men, but it will bring a more effective change that is visible to even the local man begging on the streets.

Let Africans take back Africa because it is our land, and our heritage.

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