Unpacking Pres. Cyril Ramaphosa's visit to Tanzania

bagamoyo

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Unpacking Pres. Ramaphosa's visit to Tanzania

President Cyril Ramaphosa has arrived in Tanzania for a two day state visit and to attend a SADC Heads of State summit.
President Ramaphosa will hold talks with his Tanzanian counterpart John Magufuli in Dar es Salaam this morning.
The International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor says SADC's economic challenges and peace and security issues will be placed high on the agenda of the summit.
To unpack the Tanzania visit by President Ramaphosa, we are joined by our Foreign Editor Sophie Mokoena.


Source: SABC Digital News

Ramaphosa to pay respects to Morogoro explosion victims during Tanzania visit

President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to visit the town of Morogoro in Tanzania to pledge solidarity and offer condolences following a fuel tanker explosion that claimed 70 live

President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to visit the town of Morogoro in Tanzania to pledge solidarity and offer condolences following a fuel tanker explosion that claimed 70 lives.

The president would be in that country on a state visit and to attend the Southern African Development Community (SADC) summit for heads of state and government.

Tanzania was home to South Africans who fled the apartheid regime and the youth of 1976 were schooled in Morogoro.

That’s where the African National Congress also held its national consultative conference that called for intensification of the armed struggle.

Tragedy struck Morogoro last week when a fuel tanker exploded killing 70 people. Ramaphosa was expected to visit the town on Thursday to pay his respects.

The president would also attend the 39th ordinary summit of SADC heads of state and government from Friday. The summit will be updated on the status of the region's economy, health, and food security.

It will provide policy direction about future strategic work of SADC and the SADC post-2020 agenda.

Source: https://ewn.co.za/2019/08/14/ramaph...ogoro-explosion-victims-during-tanzania-visit
 

bagamoyo

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President Cyril Ramaphosa pay tribute to Tanzanians at Solomon Mahlangu's school and Mazimbu College in Tanzania

In this historic visit to the site where the young MK fighters from the ANC used to school and receive military training before sneaking back to the apartheid South Africa to resist and fight for equal opportunity for all South Africans. President Cyril Ramaphosa poured praise to all Tanzanians for the enormous sacrifice they undertook to ensure the downfall of apartheid policy is achieved and from it arise new South Africa free from racial segregation.


Source : Global TV online

Tanzania and its Support of Southern African Liberation Movements

The role of Tanzania in fostering African Liberation movements


The emergence of organised popular liberation movements throughout Africa following the end of the Second World War was a crucial factor in achieving independence for many African countries. Tanzania played an important role in assisting these movements and acted as a consistent opponent of colonial rule in Africa. In particular, Julius Nyerere – the architect of Tanzania’s independence and the country’s first President – was a key figure in the struggle against foreign domination, and helped to popularise the concept of Pan-African unity.

Background

Following the end of the First World War and the reallocation of German colonial assets, the region today known as Tanzania was transferred from German to British control. Britain renamed the country as Tanganyika. In the 1950s, a popular independence movement emerged to challenge the colonial regime. Julius Nyerere, a schoolteacher and staunch Pan-Africanist, formed the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU), which campaigned for the end of colonial rule. In 1961 the nation became an independent autonomous commonwealth, and the following year a new constitution was written and the Republic of Tanganyika was formed, with Nyerere as President.[1] Neighbouring Zanzibar also achieved independence from the British Empire in 1963, briefly reverting to a constitutional monarchy under the Sultan until he was overthrown the following year. A new government under President Abeid Karume was formed and a few months later an agreement was reached to merge Tanganyika and Zanzibar into one nation named the United Republic of Tanzania, with Nyerere remaining as President and Karume becoming Vice-President.[2]

Julius Nyerere and TANU

Julius Nyerere, the first President of Tanzania, is remembered as a central figure in the Pan-African drive for independence, and Tanzania’s involvement in liberation movements across the continent owes much to Nyerere’s leadership. He strongly believed that Tanzania had a responsibility to actively assist other nations to achieve freedom from foreign and minority rule, and focused TANU’s attention on this issue as a major element of his government’s foreign policy. Even before Tanganyika achieved independence, Nyerere was a vocal critic of White communities in other African countries, who were unwilling to participate in African majority-ruled societies. As early as the late 1950s Nyerere was publishing pamphlets castigating Whites in Kenya, South Africa and Rhodesia for rejecting the idea of African majority rule.[3] Nyerere and TANU continued this opposition to minority rule after Tanganyika’s independence, making it a defining feature of the government’s responsibilities. Speaking at the TANU National Conference in 1967, Nyerere declared that ‘total African liberation and total African unity are basic objectives of our Party and our Government…we shall never be really free and secure while some parts of our continent are still enslaved.’[4]

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Julius Nyerere, the 1st President of Tanzania. Source: kids.britannica.com

The Arusha Declaration of 1967 outlined TANU’s principles regarding domestic and foreign policy. The document is very relevant to Tanzania’s involvement in the liberation struggle, as it obligated the government to cooperate with political liberation movements and to work with other states in achieving African Unity. The Arusha Declaration is also important within Tanzanian history as it demonstrates Nyerere’s commitment to socialist principles, which formed part of his concept of Ujamaa. Literally meaning ‘family hood’ in Swahili, Ujamaa was Nyerere’s model of African socialism, placing emphasis on political stability via a one-party system, rural regeneration through the creation of collective farms, and economic growth through nationalisation of key industries. Whilst Ujamaa helped to give direction to the newly-independent nation and imbued Tanzanians with greater sense of national identity, elements of the policy, particularly collectivisation and state control of production, later contributed to economic problems and widespread corruption.[5]

Involvement in Liberation Movements

Tanzania’s support for liberation movements went well beyond rhetoric encouraging African unity and solidarity. The country offered itself as a base for those fighting for liberation, hosting the forces of many movements including: the African National Congress (ANC) and the Pan African Congress (PAC) from South Africa, the Mozambique Liberation Front (FRELIMO), the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), the Zimbabwean African National Union (ZANU), the Zimbabwean African People’s Union (ZAPU), and the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO) from Namibia.[6] These movements benefitted from the safety and stability of the country, as well as the experience and guidance they received from those who had already achieved independence. Tanzania also welcomed and housed large numbers of refugees from struggles across Southern Africa, providing an escape for those endangered by war or colonial oppression.

Tanzania was closely involved in several groups and organisations that aided the liberation struggle. Of these, the most well-known was the Organisation of African Unity (OAU). Nyerere was a strong proponent of the formation of such an organisation, and when it was established in 1963 Tanzania was a founding member. The OAU had wider goals alongside freedom from colonialism and so it was agreed that an organ of the OAU, named the African Liberation Committee (ALC) would be formed to focus solely on the liberation struggle. Dar es Salaam, capital of Tanzania, was chosen as the headquarters of the ALC and housed it for the duration of its existence. The ALC had several key objectives: the funnelling of financial aid and material assistance to liberation movements, the promotion of coordination between liberation movements to unify their forces against the common enemy, and diplomatic efforts to seek international legitimacy for liberation movements.[7] By providing funding, logistical support, training and publicity, the ALC helped to support and organise the opposition to colonial rule in Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Angola, Zimbabwe and South Africa.[8] Tanzania was also a key member of the Frontline States, an organisation dedicated to overthrowing the apartheid regime in South Africa. By coordinating their approaches, the Frontline States could exert a greater influence than could be achieved alone.

The formation of the Southern African Development Coordination Committee (SADCC) in 1980 was one of the most significant events in the isolation of South Africa. SADCC brought together nine Southern African countries, including Tanzania, with the declared purpose of developing greater economic self-reliance and cooperation, so as to reduce dependence on South Africa and its apartheid regime.[9] Due to the economic dominance South Africa had in the region, reducing ties and resisting pressure was a near-impossible task for a single nation. Cooperation between a number of countries offered the only real prospect of achieving these objectives, but historical and geographical realities still presented many difficulties in reducing reliance on the apartheid regime.

Nyerere and his government also took action without the support of other states to challenge minority White rule in Southern Africa. In 1965 the White-dominated government of Ian Smith declared Rhodesia to be independent of the British Empire and took power. The OAU threatened that its members would break diplomatic ties with Britain if they did not intervene to remove the minority-controlled government. When the British government failed to do so by the deadline, Tanzania was one of only a few members that made good on the promise to end diplomatic relations and in doing so sacrificed £7.5 million in aid from Britain.[10] This willingness to forgo such a significant sum at a time of economic difficulty demonstrated the country’s commitment to fighting colonial and minority rule in Africa. The Tanzanian government also threatened to immediately withdraw from the Commonwealth if apartheid South Africa ever became a member, saying ‘to vote South Africa in is to vote us out’.[11] In 1970, Tanzania undertook an ambitious railway project, one of the biggest on the continent, to connect Dar es Salaam with Zambia. The aim of the project, known as Tazara, was to reduce Zambia’s economic dependence on Rhodesia and South Africa, both making it more politically independent and reducing the influence of the minority governments to the south.[12] Despite its good intentions, Tazara never truly achieved this objective as it proved to be both expensive and inefficient, and required heavy reliance on Chinese financing to keep it running.[13]

Although many of the most visible contributions to the African liberation struggle came from the political elite of Tanzania, it should be noted that the people of Tanzania were generally very supportive of the movements as well. The atrocities committed against the Kikuyu during the Mau Mau uprising in neighbouring Kenya had demonstrated to Tanzanians that anti-colonial struggles could be far more violent than their own relatively peaceful road to independence.[14] Consequently, support for African liberation movements was as strong throughout the population as it was in the government, and Nyerere was able to pursue his Pan-African objectives because of this popular support. It was customary for regular Tanzanians to offer voluntary contributions to the cause by way of agricultural produce, meagre financial resources and even blood donations.[15]This generosity was widespread despite the economic problems suffered by the country in the first few decades after independence.

Critical Views

Despite the major role that Tanzania played in nurturing African Liberation movements, there are some that offer a dissenting opinion regarding the contribution of Nyerere. Controversy among supporters of African liberation was generated in 1964, following a mutiny from the army in Tanganyika that threatened to overthrow Nyerere’s newly formed government. Faced with this prospect and forced into hiding, Nyerere appealed to the British government to deploy forces in Tanganyika in order to defeat the mutiny and restore his authority. Kwame Nkrumah, the first President of independent Ghana and a founding member of the OAU, considered this invitation of colonial troops to be a stark betrayal of the principles of African liberation. Although Nyerere later explained his actions before the OAU and received no censure, Nkrumah continued to argue that the Nyerere had forfeited any credibility he may have had as a leader of the African liberation struggle.[16]

Source: https://www.sahistory.org.za/article/tanzania-and-its-support-southern-african-liberation-movements
 

bagamoyo

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Pres. Cyril Ramaphosa's first state visit to Tanzania

President Cyril Ramaphosa has arrived in Tanzania for a state visit and to attend a Southern African Development Community’s (SADC) heads of state summit. The summit’s theme is centered around industrialisation as the overarching priority for the region.

Source : SABC Digital News
 

bagamoyo

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President Cyril Ramaphosa full speech during his state visit to Tanzania


Source: Global TV Online
 

bagamoyo

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A LOOK AT FORMER EXILED ANC FREEDOM FIGHTERS CAMP IN TANZANIA

It is difficult to talk about South Africa's struggle for liberation without talking about the fight for better formal education for the citizens. The education issue became a priority for the African National Congress, ANC after the 1976 Soweto uprising. ANC decided to set up education facilities outside South Africa to benefit exiles. In Tanzania the facilities were set up in Morogoro district in 1978. Sarah Kimani returned there to see how life was for the exiles and what became of the facilities after the exiles left Tanzania in 1992.
Source : SABC Digital News
 

The Khoisan

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Nafikiri Ramaphosa ametoa somo zuri sana kuhusu namna ya kubring confidence kwa Wawekezeji. Siyo kila kitu kulalamika na kuwa suspecious...!!

Win win situation anayoizungumzia Mkulu kila siku it's not like I give a finger you take the hand.
 

bagamoyo

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Katika hotuba nilizosoma na video clips nilizotazama kuhusu viongozi wa kisiasa wa Afrika ya Kusini, ni hotuba za Mh. Rais Cyril Ramaphosa wa Afrika ya Kusini ndizo zimeonesha kutoa shukrani za dhati na muelekeo mpya ya mashirikiano ya aina ya pekee kutokana na historia ya nchi hizi mbili kufunganishwa na vuguvugu la ukombozi Kusini mwa Afrika.

Kazi sasa ni kutumia fursa hii mpya na kujenga ushawishi wa kukuza biashara baina ya nchi za SADC na kuachana Tanzania kuzikwaza na kudumaza mashirikiano kwa kuendekeza lugha ya Kiswahili SADC badala ya fursa za kiuchumi na biashara kwa kutumia lugha ya biashara yenye ushawishi ya Kiingereza.
 

bagamoyo

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MAWAZIRI WALIVYOJILIPUA MBELE YA RAIS WA AFRIKA KUSINI LEO Rais wa Afrika Kusini, Cyrill Ramaphosa, ameendelea na ziara yake ya siku mbili Nchini ambapo leo Agosti 16, atatembelea eneo la kihistoria la Mazimbu mjini Morogoro ambalo lilitumia na wapigania uhuru wa chama cha Afrika Kusini. Ziara hiyo mkoani Morogoro imehudhuriwa na Mawaziri mbalimbali wakiongozwa na Waziri Mkuu, Kassim Majaliwa, Waziri wa Mambo ya Nje na Uhusiano wa Afrika Mashariki, Profesa kabudi, Waziri wa Elimu, Profesa Joyce Ndalichako na Waziri wa Michezo na sanaa, Dkt Harrison Mwakyembe.
Source : Global TV online
 

bagamoyo

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The Man Who Founded the ANC in 1912 : A Biography of Pixley ka Isaka Seme

It is well known that the African National Congress was formed in 1912 and is considered the oldest political organisation on the African continent. What is often not widely known is that the person who founded it was one Pixley ka Isaka Seme, a thirty-year-old black South African from Inanda outside the city of Durban.
Source : PolitySA

THE VISION OF PIXLEY ISAKA SEME 107 YEARS ON: IS CIVILIZATION STILL A DREAM AND IS THE REGENERATION OF AFRICA POSSIBLE?
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Joel Netshitenzhe
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
A hundred and seven years on, the words of Pixley ka Isaka Seme still reverberate in the hallowed chambers of the University of Columbia, summoning Africa and the world to a new way of thinking and a new way of doing things. The erudition of their framing, the profundity of their meaning and the eloquence of the prose – all remind us of the quality of leadership required to lift individual nations and the global community onto a higher state of humaneness.

Should we, of the current generation, feign an understanding of the full meaning of Seme’s injunction, as we continue to revel in pursuits that place the immediate before the long-term? Should we celebrate or even critique his notion of “civilisation”, given our current preoccupation with the comforts of modern technology to which we prostrate ourselves in the manner of slaves to a deity?

Indeed, can we claim that, in the tradition of Seme and other intellectual giants of his generation, we have continued to view all knowledge as interrelated, across the hyper-specialisation that is today in vogue? Have we not turned the vocation of ordering world affairs and social relations into a narrow profession of a select few; a form of employment that is shorn of sense and sensibility; a huckster’s paradise; and one that spawns social exclusion, inequality, corruption, economic crises, the threats of sovereign defaults and even social conflict and wars?

Since that eloquent exposition on the 5th of April 1906 on The Regeneration of Africa, for which Seme was deservedly awarded the Curtis Medal, the world has experienced oscillations that include in recent years the lifting of hundreds of millions of people out of extreme poverty. Technological advances have eased the chores of human existence and opened frontiers from the smallest Higg’s boson, the nano-particle, and the human genome; to the limitless mysteries of the wider universe.

Yet in the past two decades, at the same time as millions were being lifted out of poverty, and the tendency towards economic convergence among nations started to manifest, inequality within nations has been on the increase. As technology was revealing the utility of its magnificence to humanity, its role in the anthropogenic degradation of the environment has been coming out in even bolder relief. In the application of science, the imperatives of commerce have been, in various ways, colliding with humane and ethical conduct; and the small-minded urge for political control has started to spawn, on a global and systemic scale, the invasion of that most sacred space, individual privacy.

Humanity will soon pass the 70-year mark without an all-encompassing World War; and yet regional conflicts, civil wars, unilateral invasions and terrorism which is the deliberate targeting of civilians in armed conflict, have played out in ugly routines to which we are becoming so accustomed as to consider normal. At the same time as the flame of democracy lights up huge expanses of the globe, pockets of “unfreedom”, to paraphrase Amartya Sen, remain; and the formality of the vote in most parts of the world does not necessarily translate into inclusivity in decision-making and deserved public service.

And so, confounded by these contradictions, we dare to ask whether Seme’s Vision still bears relevance. In his own words in these hallowed settings we have the honour to tread, Seme intoned:
"See the triumph of human genius to-day! Science has searched out the deep things of nature, surprised the secrets of the most distant stars, disentombed the memorials of everlasting hills, taught the lightning to speak, the vapors to toil and the winds to worship – spanned the sweeping rivers, tunnelled the longest mountain range – made the world a vast whispering gallery, and has brought foreign nations into one civilized family…
“The regeneration of Africa means that a new and unique civilization is soon to be added to the world... The most essential departure of this new civilization is that it shall be thoroughly spiritual and humanistic – indeed a regeneration moral and eternal!
“O Africa!

Shine as thy sister lands with equal beam.”

I beg your indulgence to lend to Seme’s words the meaning that human civilisation is a combination of various attributes, including:
  • Firstly, the mastery of the laws of nature and the advancement of science and technology to serve humanity
  • Secondly, the forging of social and political relations that promote human progress and are underpinned by pursuit of equity where each takes the other as a brother’s or sister’s keeper
  • Thirdly, the promotion of mores in which self-fulfilment derives from a world-view that prizes human compassion above all else
  • Fourthly, the promotion of multidirectional osmosis in global social intercourse, not isolation and autarky, if any part of the globe is to “shine … with equal beam”
  • Lastly, the principle that the individuality of each person should be treasured, as a unique value-addition to the human family, and that the human spirit should find free reign.
It is against the background of this unmandated extrapolation of Seme’s words that I wish to reflect on the dynamics of Africa’s contemporary socio-political evolution. To what extent is the continent advancing in its utilisation of modern forms of production and exchange? How is its celebrated economic growth benefiting Africa’s people? What is the philosophical underpinning to Africa’s efforts at a renaissance? In what way is Africa benefitting from and in turn contributing to humanity’s endeavours for a better life? And is the African soul able to wander across its hills, plains and valleys unchained from the shackles of political suppression, humiliation and self-doubt?
You will agree with me, that it would be patently dishonest to answer any of these questions in an unqualified affirmative.

Yet we can say with confidence that a new dawn is setting upon Africa. The wound it has borne in colonial invasions, indigenous dictatorships, war and pestilence is steadily but surely healing. Its historical humiliation serves as a spur never again to tolerate the infliction of everything socially retrogressive on her progeny. Its decrepit cities, its huge expanses of arable land lying fallow, its extensive coastline and land mass insufficiently serviced by modern means of transport and communication – all these may be a historical deficit to decry. But equally and more importantly, they are an opportunity for the most rapid investment in infrastructure that the world will ever see in the coming decades.

According to the African Development Bank, some US$360-billion worth of investment will be needed to build Africa’s backbone infrastructure in the coming 30 years. “The 2012 to 2040 Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) … led by the AfDB, the African Union and NEPAD, [aims] to develop a web of 37 200km of railways and 16 500 km of interconnected power lines”. It also aims to add to water storage capacity, power generation and tons capacity at the ports.

Indeed, Africa is poised to turn decades and centuries of adversity into opportunity. And this we assert, not out of sheer optimism; but because facts and figures bear this truth out. Since the turn of this century, Africa’s trade with the world has more than tripled; inflation is no longer in double digits; and labour productivity has been rising. While in the decade of the 1980s average growth in Gross Domestic Product per capita was declining, this has changed to increase at above 2% in the past 18 years.

But dare we claim that a humane outcome – “a regeneration moral and eternal” – is the consequence of what these raw data represent? Needless to say, economic growth on its own does not in and of itself portend an improving quality of life for the mass of the people.

Yes, we should celebrate the reduction in the proportion of the population living on less than US$1.25 a day; the reduction in unemployment and under-five mortality rates; the massive expansion in access to education; and the improvement in life expectancy. It is a measure of the possibilities for sub-Saharan Africa to leapfrog stages of technological development that, without having to lay massive telephone landlines, cell-phone access is transforming human communication along with the enterprise of banking and commerce.

One of the abiding lessons of the past two decades is that Africa’s regeneration should find consistent expression in the building of capable and effective states across the continent, combined with quality leadership in all sectors of society and enduring citizen activism. Thus shall the legitimacy of the African state be enhanced, the better to lead in forging social compacts premised on the sharing of benefit and sacrifice. Thus will Africa’s intellectuals enjoy the space to dream and to experiment, as indispensable thought-leaders in an unfolding renaissance.
The continent’s natural endowments will then truly become a blessing and not a source of skewed economic growth and social conflict. Democracy will be deepened beyond formalities, to encompass genuine inclusivity – with minorities of whatever hue feeling a genuine sense of belonging. And economic growth will more effectively benefit Africa’s people, rather than merely supporting the accumulation of a rent-seeking elite and leading to worsening income inequality and the marginalisation of youth and women. Thus will trade within Africa itself expand, with the hard and soft infrastructure consciously put in place to facilitate this.
These are some of the measures of human progress that underpin Seme’s Vision of Africa’s regeneration. It is a vision that has endured in South Africa’s consciousness, as echoed by, among others, former President of the African National Congress Chief Albert Luthuli and Black Consciousness Movement leader Steve Biko, similarly enjoining for a new paradigm in Africa’s thinking and conduct. Let us first remind ourselves of their words.

In his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, Chief Albert Luthuli declared:
“Somewhere ahead there beckons a civilisation which will take its place in God’s history with other great human syntheses: Chinese, Egyptian, Jewish, European. It will not necessarily be all black: but it will be African”.

In the same vein, Steve Biko, in I Write What I Like, in the 1970s emphasised the unique value-addition that Africa can bring to humanity:
“The great powers of the world may have done wonders in giving the world an industrial and military look, but the great gift still has to come from Africa – giving the world a more human face.”

The paradigm that underpins this yearning is about long-term strategic thinking informed, at the same time, by the kind of pride in history that acknowledges and draws lessons from positive and negative experiences. It is a mind-set that takes pride in the unique contribution that Africa has made to the historical advancement of humanity, as Seme did so eloquently, in his magnificent oratory here at Columbia University.

In celebrating the grandeur of Thebes, the ancient capital of Egypt, and the architectural beauty of the pyramids of Ethiopia, and in recalling the “marks of genius and high character” among Africa’s great historical figures, Seme asserts Africa’s historical achievements with pride. In envisioning Africa’s “Congo and her Gambia whitened with commerce, her crowded cities sending forth the hum of business, and all her sons employed in advancing the victories of peace – greater than the spoils of war”, he impels in Africa the courage to dream and to live out that dream.

And in encouraging human contact and mutual benefit on a global scale, Seme goes further to argue that “[n]o race possessing the inherent capacity to survive can resist and remain unaffected by this influence of contact and intercourse, the backward with the advanced. This influence constitutes the very essence of efficient progress and of civilization.”
Dare we accept Seme’s logic in this regard? Allow me to come out in his defence and make bold to critique his critics.

Contained in his words of lamentation and inspiration, is the conscious acceptance that Africa will be able to progress or to stagnate not because of some ordained exceptionalism, nor in isolation from the rest of the world. Critical to human advancement, and indeed that of Africa, is the ability to extract the best out of the progress that has been made in other parts of the globe; and to embrace that which others have attained which has the potential to lift Africa to an even higher trajectory of growth and development.

Consistent with the extrapolation from his words on the meaning of human civilisation, to which we earlier referred, is the logic that the kind of pride and sense of victimhood that seek to rationalise underdevelopment are, in Seme’s reckoning, a fool’s paradise. A people that does not consciously internalise the humiliation of conquest and stagnation in certain periods of its history, and does not resolve systemically to right that wrong, is not capable of technological advancement.

But beyond the forces of production is the fundamental question of humaneness. Africa can and should contribute to the world a unique civilisation that is “thoroughly spiritual and humanistic”. In Steve Biko’s words, Africa should give the world “a more human face”. If the people of Africa have reason to show impatience, it should be because that potential and that capacity still have to find concrete expression in the continent’s contemporary renaissance and in its contribution to humanity!
How, in this context should Africa relate to the world?

Everywhere across the globe, individual countries and regional blocs are defining and redefining their Africa strategies. Yet Africa has no such strategies in relation to these countries and regions. The renewed interest in the continent is understandable, as the promise of Africa has never been this obvious. And yet contained in this is the danger that Africa will once again become the object of others’ curiosity and the theatre of their geo-political experiments.

As such, Africa needs urgently to define its geopolitical positioning and posture, which should inform the foreign policies of its various nations. Among the issues that this strategy should address are: how Africa can combine mass absorption of its people into meaningful economic activity at the same time as it modernises and diversifies its economy; how especially sub-Saharan Africa can position itself in these early years of its regeneration as the destination for low-end manufacturing which is relocating from parts of Asia as that continent moves up the manufacturing sophistication ladder; and how Africa should use its natural resources to promote its industrialisation, at the same time as it ensures global security of supply of these endowments.

Similarly, Africa should utilise its burgeoning relations with Asia and the Middle East – which are part of historical geo-strategic normalisation – to extract maximum benefit for its people; and in the course of this, ensure that erstwhile relations of colonialism and neo-colonialism are banished forever, as old and new actors on the continent are compelled to play by Africa’s rules.

In this respect, countries of the West need to interrogate their Africa posture afresh. Precisely because of a paradigm embedded in erstwhile colonial and neo-colonial relations, these ‘early-adopters’ (to borrow from modern parlance) are somewhat becoming latecomers of the new century, bent still on reproducing relations of dependence. Rather than partnering Africa in hard economics and social development, one senses among these countries, a geopolitical strategy of sheer short-termism, ideology and security.

The mirage reflected in the observations of Marguerite Michaels of Time Magazine who 21 years ago proclaimed that the “United States has been retreating from Job’s continent since the implosion of the Soviet Union set America free to pursue its own interests in Africa – and it found it did not have any…” has now come to pass indeed as a mirage. And as the realisation of a historical miscalculation dawns, desperation seems to set in, with French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici recently complaining that “…China is more and more present in Africa... (French) companies that have the means must go on the offensive... They have to fight." (Reuters, 1 December 2012)

In citing these examples, I am reminded of a question that was recently posed by a senior policy-player in Washington DC: whether the United States’ relations with Africa and South Africa in particular, need to be re-set through a Truth and Reconciliation Commission-type undertaking, to atone for the sins of the Cold War! Perhaps.
But we cannot ignore the many good policies and programmes such as the latter-day AGOA, anti-AIDS initiatives, the growing diverse investments on the continent, the fact that the US is second only to China as Africa’s largest trade partner (having been overtaken last year), as well as the Trade and Power Initiatives announced recently by President Barrack Obama during his African tour.

More critically, beyond establishment politics and economics, there is much more that binds the peoples of Africa and the United States. In celebrating Seme in Columbia today, we are invoking historical people-to-people relations of mutual influence that have endured over more than a century. We can cite in this regard African leaders at the turn of the last century who were in part formed in the crucibles of American education and the quest for Afro-American freedom such as John Langalibalele Dube, Kwame Nkrumah and Nnamdi Azikiwe, to quote but a few. Along with this, was the intellectual bidirectional osmosis of ideas in the conceptualisation of Pan-Africanism and the commendable acts of solidarity in the struggles against slavery, colonialism, apartheid and neo-colonialism.

It is this global social intercourse that Seme sought to highlight – inspired, in the first instance by the principle that Africa should take ownership of African issues and provide solutions to African problems. The continent will only be able to do this at the same time as it adds something unique to human civilisation, if it pays adequate attention to developing and observing universal principles of good economic and political governance; if it fashions social relations that are premised on improving the human condition; if through daily practice it lives the provisions of its own rules codified, among others, in the African Union Charter, the 2007 African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance, and the 2009 African Mining Vision.

In other words, Africa’s quest for sovereignty is not a rejection of Seme’s Vision of global social intercourse. Quite the opposite: it is meant strengthen international co-operation as an engagement among equals underpinned by universal humane principles that all should genuinely and consistently observe.

In this journey, Africa needs honest partners. Those who proclaim world leadership need to act as genuine forces of example – and not seek to impose on the continent military solutions that are as ephemeral as the evaporating dew on the blades of grass in Mali and Cote d’Ivoire; solutions as volatile as the shifting sands of the Libyan desert. They should meet their side of the bargain as agreed in the concrete targets set out in the 2002 G8 Africa Action Plan, rather than heave a sigh of relief that in Africa itself there is currently a deficit of advocacy of Africa’s interests in the global arena. They should evince the visionary acumen required to lift humanity onto a new trajectory of social relations, rather than being imprisoned by economic policy templates that worsen inequality and social strife. They should be bearers of the olive branch everywhere, rather than conjurers of geo-political pivots that worsen rather than reduce tensions, as increasingly seems to be the case in the South and East China Seas. They should, along with the majority of humanity, promote equitable relations in global affairs and in multilateral institutions.

In other words, Africans can, and will endeavour to, lift themselves by their own bootstraps. But success will depend also on a global environment underpinned by humane objectives and humane conduct. This, we believe, is what Pixley ka Isaka Seme lived for.

As we, in South Africa, step into the third decade of freedom, we do hope that we shall continue to live the Seme Vision reflected, in his native land, in the unity of the African people against the demon of ethnicity, as he proclaimed at the founding of the African National Congress (ANC) 101 years ago; and the unity of the broader South African nation in a social compact for the attainment of a truly democratic, non-racial, non-sexist, prosperous and equitable society. We do hope that we shall continue to find in our midst leaders of intellect, strategic acumen and social activism who inspire by their visionary brilliance and ethical conduct.
In these hopes is contained an acknowledgement that there are many instances when, as President of the ANC, Seme evinced some weaknesses in meeting his organisational responsibilities, given the unguided drift that the ANC experienced under his leadership. But in acknowledging Seme’s weaknesses, we draw solace from Nelson Mandela’s humbling words that ‘a saint is a sinner who keeps on trying’.
And so, we come back to the challenges facing global leadership across all sectors, in the context of the civilisation of which Pixley ka Isaka Seme so eloquently spoke.

Quite clearly, we cannot pursue that ideal, in its wholesome meaning, in Africa and further afield, if we do not as a matter of urgency arrest the growing inequality among citizens. The fact of the matter is that, except for a handful of outliers, income inequality is increasing across the globe; and the functional distribution of income has in the past two decades diverged even from workers’ rising productivity. This is not special pleading for the poor; or merely an assertion of their human rights. The reduction of inequality is profoundly also in the interest of the rich.

Among others, authors Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett (The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better for Everyone, p190 & p192), demonstrate that:
“The relationship between inequality and poor health and social problems are too strong to be attributable to chance; they occur independently in both our test-beds; and those between inequality and both violence and health have been demonstrated a large number of times in quite different settings, using data from different sources.
“…[it is] people at almost all income levels, not just the poor, who do worse in more unequal societies. Even when you compare groups of people with the same income, you find that those in more unequal societies do worse than those on the same income in more equal societies.”


Besides economic growth, issues that need to feature prominently in public policy include: education and skills training, workers’ involvement in share-ownership and decision-making, reducing the cost of living for the poor as well as income and minimum wage policies.

The mark of civilisation should also be reflected in the ethical conduct of business, and a change of mind-set from the pursuit of short-term self-gratification among all sectors of society. From Enron, to the allegations surrounding GlaxoSmithKline in China and JP Morgan in the United States – to quote recent examples – the lesson is the same: the legitimacy of the social system of capitalism cannot be sustained under conditions of not just ‘trickle-up economics’, but corruption and wilful violation of rules of corporate governance.

From the hittistes in Tunisia and the shabab atileen in Egypt, to the freeters in Japan and the NEETs in the United Kingdom, global society cannot claim to be pursuing a civilisation that is ‘spiritual and humanistic’, if the marginalisation of young people continues to deepen and a large section of future generations harbour little confidence in the fairness of societies to which they belong.

Global economic recovery – let alone economic growth and social equity – cannot be attained in the context of economic policies that worsen conditions of the poor and seek to strengthen protectionism; and polities in which xenophobia, right-wing jingoism and political obstructionism are becoming the stock-in-trade. What the world yearns for is rationalism in the fashioning of policies and in the conduct of politics; a reconfiguration of the systems and institutions of global governance; and imaginative coalitions on issues of peace and protection of the environment.

What we expect of Africa as it sets out on its regeneration, cannot be divorced from the global environment in which the continent operates. But as Seme, Luthuli and Biko argued, Africa has a responsibility to itself and to the world to contribute its own unique attributes, to offer ‘the great gift’ of ‘a more human face’.
This it can do, among others, by pursuing:
  • Economic diversification, industrialisation and modernisation;
  • Inclusivity in the conduct of economics and politics;
  • Ethics in corporate and political governance;
  • Political legitimacy that derives from active citizenship and strategic intellectual discourse; and
  • The pooling of continental sovereignties as an indispensable part of the global family of nations.
Pixley ka Isaka Seme dared to dream. It speaks to the depth of his foresight and the profound relevance of his message that we have assembled in the same environs of his oration a hundred and seven years ago, not merely to commemorate a remarkable event, but to help rekindle a dream deferred.
Source : https://www.ias.columbia.edu/blog/v...-still-dream-and-regeneration-africa-possible
 

bagamoyo

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Jan 14, 2010
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11 January 2019
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ANC's Pixley ka Isaka Seme honoured

Source : SABC Digital News

Profile of Pixley Seme

Pixley Isaka Ka Seme was born in October 1881 in the then colony of Natal. He was initially educated at a local mission school, and then went to the United States of America on a missionary scholarship for further education, including university studies at the Ivy League Columbia University in New York.

Seme was a gifted orator and at Columbia won the university's highest award for oratory after he spoke on the subject of 'The Regeneration of Africa'.

He was clearly a young man with a passion for education. After Columbia, he proceeded to yet another prestigious institution, this time in Britain, to attend Jesus College at Oxford University, where he read for a degree in Law. His legal studies would later be of great assistance in his fight against injustice in the newly established Union of South Africa. He entered the Bar at Middle Temple after Oxford and wrote his bar exams. While still in England, he met members of the African delegation who had travelled to London to monitor the drafting of the South Africa Act through the British Parliament in 1909. He returned to South Africa in 1910 and set up a legal practice in Johannesburg where there was a dearth of African lawyers. Seme believed that the denial of basic human rights to black South Africans – an everyday occurrence – could to some extent be remedied by recourse to the law, and his practice thrived on taking up matters of the poor and dispossessed. He would later also represent King Sobhuza II, the Swazi monarch, before the Privy Council in London, in a land dispute between Swaziland and the Union of
South Africa.

But more than in the use of courts and the legal process, which he recognised as limited, he believed in the necessity of the oppressed organising themselves. Thus, in 1912, Seme together with African lawyers Alfred Mangena, Richard Msimang and George Montsio, called for a convention of Africans to discuss their situation in the new Union of South Africa and to look for peaceful means to change the status quo in the country. This call would turn out to be a major turning point in modern African history.

The outcome, of course, was the formation of the South African Native National Congress (SANNC), later renamed the African National Congress (ANC).

Seme, the young, highly educated lawyer and polished orator, was the keynote speaker at the inaugural meeting of the SANNC and he was elected its first treasurer-general. He also launched the organisation's newspaper Abantu Batho ('People') because he believed that a regular channel of communication had to be created to maintain contact between the new organisation and its members. The paper was multilingual, carrying articles in English, Xhosa, Zulu, Sotho and Tswana. In the following year, Seme formed the South African Native Farmers Association. At the 1930 annual congress of the ANC, he was elected president-general of the organisation, a position he held until 1937.

He was of cautious disposition and therefore emphasised economic self-reliance in the work of the ANC rather than active mobilisation against the myriad of policies directed to keep Africans subjugated. His cautious approach resulted in a number of contentious struggles within the organisation during his term of office. Nevertheless, his brilliance was universally recognised and in 1928 he was awarded an honorary doctorate (LLD) from his alma mater, Columbia University.

Pixley Isaka Ka Seme's life is an outstanding example of a search for academic excellence running parallel with a commitment to a struggle for justice. His intellectual energy was honed to the service of the struggle for the majority of the people. His life is a model of the passion for learning, of determination and commitment.

Seme died in Johannesburg in 1951. He was married to a daughter of King Dinuzulu of Zululand, and the couple had five children.
Source : http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/national-orders/recipient/pixley-seme-1881-1951
 

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