My contribution to building today, our continent, mother Africa for a better tomorrow is first of all protection of human rights.
We know that in Africa human rights violations are rampant. Africa kills its sun and that is why it lags behind and remains to be in the dark. It kills its bright people, young and old, men and women-its work force through endless wars. Those men and women would have been its developmental implements.
Wars don’t stop hence wars are some of the bottlenecks that hinder economic growth. Farmers in countries like Somalia, DRC and CAR cannot get ample peaceful time to dig their farms and feed the populations of those countries let alone getting surplus for export. Resilience cannot be built because of these barbaric wars as it needs ample time and resources.
If a country cannot feed itself, that means it cannot bounce back from shocks. That is why the economic situations in African countries remain fragile ever since they got independence some fifty years ago.
The next point is to produce products in Africa. Africa should produce what it consumes by itself. It should not be a market for the world. Its goods should be finished in that it should add value. When we produce coffee whether it’s Robusta or Arabica we should process it and make it final products.
There should be mutual interests in creating markets for African products in the manner Africa is a market for world products. What we mean here is that markets should be equal in that Africa shouldn’t be the underdog in that it allows final products from other continents while it is almost open for the exportation of raw materials only!
On the other hand, there should be free markets in Africa. Africa should trade with ourselves. In a nutshell, I should be doing the opposite of these current challenges. These however need strong governments, education, good health and industrialization.
Currently Africa is behind in terms of technological knowhow and its application. The menace should not continue. For proper industrial growth, energy optimization should be enhanced all over the continent. Once this is done, education and industrialization would be enhanced.
Currently Africa is disorganized hence it should be organized with all the above solutions and others. You keep yourself weak at your own peril. It is not a good idea. Africa is favored by God and by nature. We live in an area of about 11.7sq miles.
This land could have been utilized in a batter way. It is well watered with big rivers and vast lakes. The rivers include, the major ones include Nile, Congo, Limpopo and others. We also have many smaller ones like Jubba, Shabelle, Kagera, Rufuji and Tana. The major lakes include Lake Chad, Lake Vitoria and Lake Tanganyika. All of these can be well used for irrigation.
Preferential trade areas such SADC and COMESA as well as ECOWAS should be maintained and many more should be created. This is what I would have done. Political organization is weak in Africa therefore, it should be strengthened so that it can support the economic growth.
Better political organization enhances free trade as in free movement of goods and people across borders. For instance people should not need passports and visas to travel from Tanzania to Kenya or from Kenya or Uganda. In essence I would have allowed people to move from one country to another to allow growth of the economy through mobility of workforce.
Women should not be looked down upon like many of us do. The play a major role in the development of the continent. They should be encouraged to even play better roles. They should not be marginalized. Corruption should be shunned. Attacks against the private sector such as bureaucratic impediments and extorting money through bribes should be abandoned. Very bad regulations in Africa sabotage the private sector.
Foreign investments should be encouraged too to add to the GDP of Africa. Harmful cultural practices hampering the betterment of Africa such as under utilization of natural resources should stop in Africa. For example, in Africa many communities don’t eat fish hence the under development fishing industry within the continent.
The service provision sector in Africa is also under developed. I would also do something in addressing effects of natural calamities. Early warning systems would have been put in place for the continent. Immigration which is a disease would have been curbed at the source.
Immigration is causing brain drain in Africa where the best brains that would have worked out on our developmental take off seek greener pastures in Europe, America, Australia and elsewhere.
Lastly leveraging of initiatives should be done. This is something to do with transfer of African affairs from international to national and sub-national levels in African countries should be done with immediate effect so that we Africans can decide our destiny.
Thank you very much indeed.