Wed | Dec 19, 2018

Make Africa great again

Published:Friday | December 29, 2017 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

During this United Nations Decade for the Descendants of Africans in the Diaspora, I hope and pray that we can make Africa great. The constant highlighting by the Western media of the famine, corruption and underdevelopment feeds into the narrative that black people are savage, wicked, lazy, dependent etc. The narrative excludes the complicity and divide-and-conquer philosophies that have fostered this situation since the partition of Africa and before.

My visits to African countries in the north, west, and south remind me of many of the possibilities. China has demonstrated that a country must have economic and other kinds of power to make its people powerful and confident. When Western Countries criticise China for doing some of the very things that they have done in the past, it is indeed ludicrous. I have no illusions that the people of China will find ways of transforming those aspects of the country that they do not like.

But, today, I wait with bated breath hoping that George Weah will become president of Liberia, and bring a fresh vision and experience to his country, which is healing from the days of being embroiled in a civil war. Africa is throwing off the yoke of some leaders who have held on to power and personal gain and put the continent into further disrepute.

When this continent rises to its full potential, the Africans in the West can, like people in other diasporas, contribute in many different ways. Our own Marcus Garvey declared 'Africa for the Africans at home and those abroad'. I see 2018 as a year of transformation to make Africa great.

Hilary Hickling

Hilary.hickling@gmail.com