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African Unity: Did Nyerere frustrate Nkrumah's Pan-Africanist Visions?

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Kjnne46, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. K

    Kjnne46 Member

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    OSAGYEFO DR. KWAME NKRUMAH:

    Remembering Africa’s most influential and greatest in the 21st century
    Written by Ebou Faye
    Friday, 24 February 2006


    24 February 1966 could be described as one of Africa’s darkest days. It was the day that Nkrumah was overthrown by a military coup with the support of the American CIA. Nkrumah was not only passionate about Africa but he was obsessed with the unity of Africa.
    He put Africa’s interest above that of Ghana by declaring in one of his most emotional and moving speeches that “The independence of Ghana was meaningless unless the whole of Africa was liberated from colonial rule”.

    Nkrumah’s importance to African political practice does not lie in the fact that he led the first country in tropical Africa to gain independence (1957). Its significant contribution stems from Nkrumah’s introduction to the African political struggle, the theory and practice of “mass movement”. Until then, politics was preserved for the educated elites, lawyers, civil servants, journalists, progressive school teachers and disgruntled intellectuals. The politics of these elites was limited to the demands for equality with the colonialists, better working conditions and privileges for senior civil servants or against racial discrimination. It was not until Nkrumah spearheaded the formation of a militant political movement with one principal and concrete political demand: Self-Government Now. He did not appeal to the British Government to grant them their demand, but he made the masses aware of the need to govern themselves. And he achieved this through mass strength and determination of the Ghanaian people to bring about the desired goal. The people in turn responded to his trust and confidence in them by giving him their whole-hearted support.

    It was not until 1947, when Nkrumah went back to Ghana that Pan-Africanism was elevated from the realm of an ideal, to that of a concrete, mass-based political practice. Nkrumah launched the Conventional People’s Party (CPP) in 1942. Nkrumah’s CPP won independence for Ghana in 1957 and in 1958; he hosted the All-African People’s Conference (AAPC). It was the first post-Manchester conference, which sought to put into practice on the African continent that vision of liberation and socialism expressed in 1945.

    The AAPC brought together for the first time all liberation movements in Africa. As stated by my former lecturer, Abdou Rahman Muhammed Babu when the delegations of the Pan-African Movement for East and Central Africa stopped over at Congo in 1958, they discovered Patrice Lumumba and his Congolese comrades who were not aware of the impending All-African People’s Conference, although it had been widely publicized all over Africa. For soon as Nkrumah was informed of the impending participation of the Congolese delegation, he gave instruction that they should see him as soon as they arrived, and when he eventually met them, he requested them to stay longer in Accra after the conference was over. Ghana’s commitment to Congo’s independence henceforth was to become Nkrumah’s obsession.

    Only 14 months after Lumumba’s visit, the Congo was liberated. But the significance of the Accra conference was even deeper than the liberation of Congo. With the influence of Frank Fannon and the Algerian delegation, the theme of the conference was transformed from a non-violent liberation struggle to the “struggle by any means, including violence”. This was a decisive departure from the Manchester conference which favored Ghandhian non-violence and passive resistance to colonialism.

    This changed the form of the liberation struggle, and there was a proliferation of the Africa-wide Ghana-inspired “mass parties” involving entire populations. It forced the colonialist to accept, in the words of Harold Macmillan, then British Prime Minister, speaking to South Africa’s white dominant parliament in 1961 that the “wind of change was blowing across Africa.” If the 1945 Manchester meeting ushered in the epoch of hope and great expectations, the 1958 the Accra meeting concretized those hopes and expectations by making Africa no longer governable by the colonialists. One by one, African countries began to win their independence.

    After inspiring the independence of most African countries, Nkrumah moved on to ensure the unity of Africa. As stated in his speech delivered in 1963, at the founding conference of the OAU, “we have already reached the stage where we must unite or sink into that condition which has made Latin America the unwilling and distressed prey of imperialism after one-and-a-half centuries of political independence. He further added that not one of us working singly and individually can successfully attain the fullest development. Only a united Africa functioning under a union government can forcefully mobilize the material and moral resources or our separate countries and apply them efficiently and energetically to bring a rapid change in the condition of our people.”

    Nkrumah’s idea of African unity was conceived as a means of fighting two scourges inflicted on Africa by colonialism. One was the fragmentation of the continent, which resulted in the weak and unviable states; second was poverty, which was a consequence of the fragmentation, extensive colonial exploitation and an illogical and primitive colonial, economic structure which obstructed development. These two scourges were inter-linked, designed to facilitate colonial domination and exploitation. It was impossible to abolish one without abolishing the other, both had to be tackled simultaneously, beginning with the institution of a basis for a continental unity.

    Owing to the division between radical and conservative tendencies among independent African states at the time, the radicals had to compromise a number of their principles of unity so as to persuade the conservatives to join the organization. Unfortunately, the inclusion of the conservative states turned the OAU into a moribund institution. The conservatives’ first success in obstructing the move towards continental unity was achieved at the OAU Cairo summit in 1964. It was at this crucial conference that Julius Nyerere, then President of Tanzania, cunningly pushed through a resolution which urged the OAU to accept the colonial borders as permanent, recognized frontiers of the OAU member states. This move was in collaboration with Emperor Haile Selasie of Ethiopia, who one year earlier had annexed Eritrea. The underlying motive of the resolution was to frustrate Nkrumah and his Pan-Africanist ideals, though Nyerere claimed that the intention was to minimize border conflicts in Africa. The resolution was carried by a simple majority and became a key binding principle of the OAU Charter. Ironically, instead of abolishing Africa’s primary malady of disunity, the OAU encouraged it.

    Secondly, the conservatives strove to make the OAU serve their interest and not those of Africa as a whole by altering the balance of forces on the continent in favor of the conservatives rather than the radicals who were still dominant in African politics. Beginning with Ben Bella of Algeria in 1965 and Nkrumah in 1966, the conservatives in collaboration with their ex-colonial masters, engineered the overthrow of radical leaders via military coups. Henceforth, the OAU ceased to be an instrument of the Pan-African revolutionary change and became an apologist or the statusquo. Even the liberation of the remaining colonies was conceived in the context of maintaining this statusquo. It did not take long for Nyerere himself, the architect of the OAU statusquo, to publicly admit in 1972 that the OAU had become no more than a “trade union of Africa’s heads of state.”


    According to Baffour Ankomah of the New African magazine, Nkrumah was not only a thinker, visionary and orator but also a doer. Nkrumah knew that Africa’s future and prosperity lay with rapid industrialization, to create the goods and jobs that would economically empower the people of the continent. As such, he set out to industrialize Ghana in one generation as a guide for the continent. By the time his Government was overthrown in that dreadful coup of 1966, he had established 68 sprawling state-owned factories producing every need of the Ghanaian people, and this was within the space of nine (9) short years. Among the factories were a distillery, a coconut oil factory, a brewery, a milk-processing plant, a lorry and bicycle plant, a modern oil refinery, an iron and steel works, a flour mill, sugar, textile, cement factories, shoe factory, a glass factory, a tyre factory, a meat processing factory, two canneries for fruits and tomatoes, a chocolate factory etc. This was in addition to building the huge hydro-electric plant at Akosombo, the nations major source of electricity supply, a motorway from Accra to Tema, expanding at breakneck speed, free education and medical services that made Ghana the showcase of Africa. As Nkrumah has stated, “for unless we attain economic freedom, our struggle for independence would have been in vain, and our plans for social and cultural advancement frustrated.”

    While in office, Nkrumah did not accumulate a large private fortune. His years of exile in Guinea as co-president to Sekou Toure were spent writing and tending his rose garden. Nkrumah remained modest in his private life. His relaxation was not wining and dining but the conservation of intelligent companions. His left all his possessions to his political party and asked his wife and children to be properly cared for by the party. Perhaps one of the most significant legacies of Nkrumah to all Africa was his commitment to ending the ethnic frontiers. Tribalism he had seen as a great stumbling block to national achievement. Nkrumah’s vision of the African past was more grandiose, with an emphasis on trade and empire rather than on community and lineage.

    If they had listened to Nkrumah on that faithful day in 1963, in which he declared “we meet here today not as Ghanains, Guineans, Egyptians, Algerians, Moroccans, Malians, Liberians, Congolese or Nigerians, but as Africans. Africans united in our resolve to remain here until we have agreed on the basic principles of a new compact of unity among ourselves, which guarantees for us a continental government.” He continued, “If we succeed in establishing a new charter of statute for the establishment of a continental unity of Africa, and the creation of social and political progress for our people, then in my view, this conference should make the end of our various groupings and regional blocs. But if we fail and let this grand and historic opportunity slip by, then we shall give way to greater dissension and division among us for which the people of African will never forgive us.”

    Africa is divided today as it was forty-six years ago resulting in the devastation of the nations’ self-esteem and livelihood of their people. Africa is the basket case of the world, riddled with indebtedness, Aids, war, displaced people, refugees, poverty and a colonial economy that was not in the interest of its people.

    Source: Gambia News - Daily Observer Online Edition
     
  2. mwakatojofu

    mwakatojofu JF-Expert Member

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    1. hapa baba wa taifa hakuona mbali
    2. afrika ingekuwa united ingekuwa rahis zaid kuzisaidia nchi ambazo zilikuwa hazijapata uhuru kipindi kile
    3. nyerere angechaguliwa kuongoza afrika kama ingeungana muda ule?
     
  3. Gamba la Nyoka

    Gamba la Nyoka JF-Expert Member

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    Bara zima kuwa nchi moja mimi naona siyo feasible, atleast Africa ingekuwa na nchi tano binafsi ninaona siyo mbaya sana.
     
  4. S

    Son of Alaska JF-Expert Member

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    this is where we AFRICANS,will always be found wanting,instead of dwelling on the present and the future,we dwell on the past.its always like what if africa had united,what if tanzania had never embraced socialism.Crying over split milk has never ever done anyone any justice-its about time we just forge ahead,HISTORY has had its time.
     
  5. A

    Abdurratln New Member

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  6. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    Huyo ndio baba yenu wa taifa na sera zake za ubinafsi,uungu mtu,unyanyasaji,ufisadi na udikteta.

    SAHIBA.
     
  7. J

    Jasusi JF-Expert Member

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    Time and history will prove Nyerere was right and a visionary.
     
  8. J

    Jasusi JF-Expert Member

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    Unachoonyesha hapa zaidi ni chuki zako dhidi ya Baba wa taifa. Hakuwa mbinafsi na hakuwa fisadi.
     
  9. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    I don't know what history you waiting.Time and history is proving now he was wrong.
     
  10. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    Ufisadi si wizi tu Udikteta ni aina ya ufisadi pia au anataka hadi kina Tuntemeke Sanga wakueleze Jasusi.
     
  11. Companero

    Companero Platinum Member

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    African leaders were not ready at all for Nkrumah's idealistic fast-tracking of African Unity. Nyerere, the pragmatic, saw this. Then he tried to help Nkrumah see it so that they can focus their energies on building a couple of bigger blocs within Africa that will gradualy and, ultimately, develop into a United States of Africa. Nkrumah sarcastically ridiculed him by arguing that all that was tantamount to the balkanization of Africa in a large scale. Nyerere was adamant that something to start with was better than nothing for, by then, the blocs were already work in progress while African Union was a non-starter. In the final analysis Nkrumah's utopianism frustrated Nyerere's mission of step by step move toward African Unity in as much as Nyerere's realism frustrated Nkrumah's vision of a revolutionary move toward it! All in all, Africa must - and will soon - unite!
     
  12. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    Nyerere alikuwa na sifa ya kucrush any idea if it wasn,t from him that was just him.
     
  13. b

    babertov Member

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    niliwai kumsikia baba wa taifa letu kwenye moja ya hotuba zake akisema wakati wa utawala wake kuna makosa yamefanyika, na kuna mengi mazuri na mengine mabaya.

    sasa wale watu wajinga wanayatolea macho makosa na uovu yaani wanayachukua maovu na kuyaacha mazuri.

    Mtu mwenye akili akikuambia jambo la kijinga ukalikubali basi atakudharau.

    wakuu napenda kusisitiza kwamba huu si wakati wa kulaumu makosa yaliyofanywa na waasisi wa bara letu, cha muhimu ni kuyachukua hayo makosa kama changamoto(challenges),kuyatoa kwenyeuasi na kuwa uchanya kwa faida la bara letu na watu wake wa africa.

    baba wa taifa hili amefanya mengi mazuri ya kubwa ndani na nje ya nchi yetu,ni lazima tumshukuru na kumuenzi kwa mema yote aliyoyafanyia taifa na bara la africa.

    thanx
     
  14. J

    Jasusi JF-Expert Member

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    Barbetov,
    Kuna wengine hawataki kusikia kabisa kama Nyerere alikuwa na mazuri.
    Wao ni kulalama tu kuwa hata huu ufisadi wa leo unaofanywa na viongozi wa CCM yeye ndiye aliyewarithisha. Utawaona tu wamejaa!
     
  15. b

    babertov Member

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    Wanaleta ushabiki baadala ya facts,
     
  16. Mtyama

    Mtyama Member

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    I agree with you, Jasusi. Much of Mwalimu's lasting legacy can be cited from the South Centre. Time will tell ...
     
  17. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    Kitu ambacho wengi mnashindwa kutofautisha ni kati ya makosa na matendo,kwa namna Mwalimu alivyokuwa inteligent,nashindwa kukueleweni mnaposema makosa that's the fact.We are paying the price of not his mistake is his leadership.I am ready to forgive anyone's mistakes but not the ones that take me to the hole intentionally.


    SAHIBA.
     
  18. S

    Sahiba JF-Expert Member

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    Tatizo bebetoz tunayaenzi hayo makosa na tumekataa kuyaita makosa tunazikumbatia legasy zao.Hakuna udikteta mkubwa aliotufanyia Mwalimu kama kutuwekea Mkapa madarakani 1995,are you telling me yale ni makosa,NO alijua anachofanya and for that I will die with the pain.
     
  19. J

    Jilunga Member

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    Katika historia ya Dunia hakuna mtawala aliyewahi kufanya maamuzi yakawa sawa 100% au yakawapendezesha wote. Labda kama mnamfahamu mniambie Nkurumah vile vile alikuwa na matatizo yake...Soma Historia zaidi na utaafiki kwa maelezo hayo basi tukubali Nyerer hakuwa kamili pia ila kuna watu ambao walitaka nyerere sikosea hata kitu kimoja..sasa hiyo haiwezakani lakini katika ulinganisho wa mwisho mazuri ya nyerere yanazidi mabaya aliyotenda na ni viongozi wachache sana wa kiafrika wakati huo unaweza kuwaweka katika mizani sawa na nyerere. He was extraordinary on the other was he was not ordinary.

    Kuhusu Umoja wa Afrika Nyerere pekee hawezi kulaumiwa na hapa ninamaanisha hata angekuwa upanda wa nkrumah haimaanishi umaja wa afrika ungeafikiwa. Je labda uniambie kama walipiga kura ratio ya proposing na opposing ulikuwa ngapi? sasa kwa nini kelele hizi? Nyerere ,..nyerere kila siku .Huyo Nyerere hakuwa Mungu na hata angeunga mkono kula yake ilikuwa ni moja tu na haimaanishi vilevile huo muswada ulishidwa kwa kula moja.

    Nyerere asilaumiwe labda mlaumu kizazi chote cha utawala kipindi hicho. Halafu Winston Churchil alisema ' Ukianzisha ufitini kati ya wakati huu(present) na uliopita (past)uko kwenye hatari ya kushindwa wakati ujao(future). Ndugu tuangalie mbele, Tuangalie Je Gaddaffi ataweza? Kikwete atasaidiaje? na marais wengine watasaidiaje na Je itawezekana? au ni day dreaming?
     
  20. Ngongo

    Ngongo JF-Expert Member

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    Mkuu sahiba heshima mbele.
    Tuko pamoja katika hili kama kunakosa ambalo nyerere alilowatendea watanzania ni hili la kutubandikia fisadi Mkapa.Kosa lingine kubwa ambalo bado litaendelea kututesa kwa muda mrefu ni kutengeneza katiba iliyomfanya rais wa Tanzania kuwa mungu mtu.
     
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