Sunday, August 27, 2006

asks if there will soon be a “United States of AFrica”?



Chippla’s Weblog, asks if there will soon be a “United States of AFrica”?

“Do these names mean anything to you: Thabo Mbeki, Olusegun Obasanjo, John Kufuor, Abdoulaye Wade, Meles Zenawi, Ahmed Ouyahia and Alpha Omar Konare? According to this report, they are seven of the most powerful men in Africa and they met in a summit tagged “Africa and the challenges of the global order: Desirability of union government” in the Nigerian capital of Abuja to discuss ways of moving forward with the political unification of their continent.” Chippla concludes that it is doubtful Africa would emerge as one country, at least not in the next 50 years which is a pretty long time.
Sokari Ekine

According to John Kufor, who by the way is the Oxford-educated president of Ghana:
"The call for a united Africa has been around for a long time...Some want to go only as far as the European Union, while for others it has to be nothing short of one central government…The emerging reality is that the rest of the world is already constituted as political unions or economic blocs."Ghana of the 1950s was the birthplace of modern day pan-Africanism with leaders such as the late Kwame Nkrumah advocating the creation of a single African nation modeled on socialist ideals.While closer political and economic ties among various African countries is laudable, its litmus test lies not in policies formulated by a ruling elite but in the response of individual citizens. Like in most parts of the world, governments of rich African countries require visas from citizens of poorer countries. This has a lot to do with the fear of uncontrolled migration which might eventually put a strain on social services.Looking at it another way however, some of the poorest parts of Africa could also be the most rewarding from a business point of view. With places like Liberia and Sierra Leone coming out of years of civil war, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (or what I like to call the richest yet poorest piece of land on the planet) still trying to get its feet on the ground, business opportunities abound and the liberalization of financial and labor laws could go a long way in fostering desirable cross border migrations.Africa will likely not become a single country in the next half century but closer ties will now become the norm rather than the exception. In the 21st century, there is simply no way small nation states can survive on their own in the sea of globalization and multinational dominance – it's a good thing to see that nationalistic perceptions are being trashed away in favor of reality.The West African regional bloc (ECOWAS) allows for the freedom of movement of people. A nice gesture I would say but goods and services are still not allowed to move freely. Thus, it is not uncommon for Nigeria to ban, unban and ban Ghanaian goods. It seems there is still quite a long way to go, for if goods and services still cannot move freely in West Africa, I wonder how long it would take for this to happen in all of Africa. You see, sometimes it's protectionist government policies, under the cloak of protecting national interests, that hinder development.
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Posted by Chippla Vandu, 1:53 PM links to this post
14 Comments:
I remember hearing this idea back in the 70s, perhaps now with advances in telecommunication, health care and engineering it will finally come to pass. I think this would be the best thing for Africa.Civilizations seem to have a natural ebb and flow, from Asia to the Middle East, Europe and the Americas, all sprouted numerous unique cultures which have continued the natural progression of human civilization, each making its own special contributions to this continuing cycle. It's remarkable how few people are aware that some of the earliest known organized civilization arose in Africa, we just don't have a strong record of these civilizations mostly because of a lack of written language. While some may disregard these earliest civilizations as the poor stepchildren of written history, given the cycle we've seen through recorded time, it seems highly likely that what was created by our earliest of documented civilizations, sprang from foundations laid and knowledge gleaned directly from those early Africans, who remain shrouded in the mists of unrecorded time.Perhaps in this great circle of civilizations, Africa's time is quickly approaching again.Aaron
Posted by The Dead at 9:41 PM, November 13, 2005
Thanks for your comments. There can be little doubt that Africa served as the bedrock for all modern civilizations in the world. Though modern African civilizations were often viewed as primitive by the Europeans, they did show signs of development such as having structured and organized kingdoms. Africans, like most people in other parts of the ancient world domesticated crops and animals (probably not to the same degree as the people in Europe and Asia, though this is debatable). The Aborigines of Australia did not.The lack of advancement of African civilization lies in my opinion, on their refusal to open up to new ideas from outside. For instance, no country in sub-Saharan Africa (excluding Ethiopia) was able to develop an indigenous modern writing style. No single civilization or country has managed to achieve development by remaining isolated from others. This is the time for African countries to learn that unless they open up to themselves, they will have no future. I would not advocate pan-Africanism based on socialist ideas like Mr. Kwame Nkruma but I do think that a United States of Africa will be a wonderful thing for the African continent.
Posted by Chippla at 10:03 PM, November 13, 2005
This is a very interesting concept and much of what you both (Aaron, Chippla) have written here sounds great.Economic development and social stability should be high priorities on the political agendas of smart African leaders in this century. Inter-regional trade and commerce and other forms of cooperation are very important in helping to achieve these goals.However, I cannot at this time see the people of various African nations who have been bitter rivals and enemies of one another for eons endorsing and supporting such an idea.It would be a gargantuan task to get the diverse peoples of the African continent onboard. They would have to be convinced of the immediate and tangible benefits for their daily lives and also be ready to abandon centuries of mistrust and animosity toward their neighbors and outsiders.European's constant bickering over the policies and actions of the European Union and the European Parliament re: issues such as the controversy over admitting Turkey (and other countries) into the European Economic Community are good examples of how difficult it is to create a strong and enduring union of nations working for the benefit of all members.
Posted by Black River Eagle at 1:30 PM, November 14, 2005
I think a United States of Africa is unrealistic. Too many people have power that they don't want to relinquish. Even the more ethnically and culturally homogeneous (and much smaller) Europe only has a moderate degree of integration. And even that has not been without controversy.And you have admit that while many of the some leaders have called for such a union, the actions of many are contrary to that very spirit. Even Meles, who was part of this meeting you cite, is ratcheting up the rhetoric against Eritrea thus risking of a reprise of their insane border war. Insane border wars are surely antithetical to the spirit of such unions. The best option at the time, as you said, is increased integration of a regional level. Freedom of movement for citizens and goods. Economic and political cooperation. Such improvements need to occur gradually. After all, I'm sure that in 1945, no one would have thought that by 2005, France and Germany would be each other's closest ally.
Posted by Brian at 3:43 PM, November 14, 2005
Most importantly,there's need to create a formidable economic strength that can match that of China, the EU and other markets in the world. It is then that trade talks can be taken more seriously by developed nations and exportations can soar higher.This can only be done by uniting African nations.
Posted by Anthony Arojojoye at 10:06 AM, November 16, 2005
I well appreciate all comments that were posted by each one of you. I would likie to add this comment also.I think the social side of unity between african citizens plays a major part in harmonising all other aspects of african unity. If african leaders started to address this issue, it means that they will be able to address other progressive issues. The social side is the basic element of any unity. If people are united and harmonised, it will be an unperpinning for any type of continueing integration at higher level. I think this could be by regional bodies in Africa developing similar kinds of services (like health, education etc...)among each other, and with the freedom of movement of people, like in West Africa, people are going to realise that are all the same. I will give you now an example of my social argument. In Europe, there are so many deprived ethnic minorities and clesses. Why is that? It is because higher classed people and native citizens of those European countries are not prepared to accept them. Even with the developement of equal oppurtunities policies, you still see signs of a very huge divisions in society that most of people do not notice and regards as unimportant, according to ethnicity and social class.The social side is the basic for civil peace on an individual national and at all levels up to a continental level.
Posted by Ahmed at 8:57 AM, November 18, 2005
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Posted by Ahmed at 9:33 AM, November 18, 2005
Moreover, it will play part in calming down disagreements, if it was addressed. This is because it will have an affect on political policies. If services were harmonised, then it would be difficult to contradict with others at any higher level. The other side of social harmonising is that it gives a sense of equality among citizens from other African countries. They all get the same, so there will not be any fuel for any anomisties to arise amongst them. An example of that is in Eritrea, where ethnic manorities get equal share of any kinds of development, even in media, which kept that country in internal peace and a high degree of domestic stability inbetween citizens there. This is reflected on its crime rate (Eritrea is until now a country with one of the lowest crime rates in the whole world according to global statistics, if we ignored the warfare with Ethiopia which has nothing to do with local crime rate in Eritrea). Inequality and also dominance of power and wealth by one ethnic group was a major factor in most of past war situations that the continent witnessed in the last decades. This can also be addressed as a inter-national level, but it might take different forms and perceptions. It should be addressed as a more of human basic needs issue at a more peaceful time that Africa is witnessing now. This issue will help in facilitaing the way for the upcoming steps towards more unity at higher levels. All of the above regional social harmonising (and any other subsequent developements in relation to integration) must be addressed at an AU level and each region should be given guidelines on which they act on, and these guidelines should be geared and directed at the end into harmonising the social side at a continental level. For this to happen we need to wait for the Pan-African Parliament policies to be compulsory on all AU state memebers as planned, and this must be implemented for any African unitification steps to take a real and profound effect.One of the most important social elements that I must address is the environment. We all need to live in areas, where we do not feel ill and become infected with different diseases. That is a better option for our future generations to help them have a stable growth and future prospects.
Posted by Ahmed at 9:43 AM, November 18, 2005
Counsel from elders seems to be a lost treasure. Lost are lessons learned that may contain pearls of wisdom that could have benefited the seeker. Having survived my share of hazardous crossings, I am pleased to be able to share a thought or two. The main lesson is to keep on learning. Read and seek out other points of view like visiting your blog. Finding what is ultimately important has lead me to appreciate actuality, efficiency and mindfulness. Helping others to see some of the forest through the trees is a rewarding benefit of age and maturity. discernment
Posted by Anonymous at 10:03 PM, January 07, 2006
Africa might be united, but not any time soon. Certainly not.The second largest continent has a very diverse population and several "gonogos" who don't want to let go of political power.Also, the so-called economic integration in ECOWAS (West Africa) is far from the truth, for the common people. Try travelling from Ghana to Nigeria (or vice versa) by road, and see what I mean. You'd be harrased so much... you'd hate yourself for been African.
Posted by Oluniyi David Ajao at 8:24 PM, January 14, 2006
That's where the irony lies. In principle, there is freedom of movement of people in the ECOWAS sub-region but border crossings can be a nightmare I know (except of course one travels by air).There really is no economic integration in West Africa. Individual nation states still guard their borders tightly, with Nigeria being a huge culprit in this regard—shutting out Ghanaian and Beninoise products for different reasons.But economic integration is coming on slowly. The on-going West African gas pipeline project by which Nigeria supplies gas to coastal West African nations is a step in the right direction.
Posted by Chippla at 9:30 PM, January 14, 2006
An imaginative view on the awaited African civilisation.I think when the great circle of civilisation lands in Africa, it will have a new form. This form is based on the fact that Africa is on the centre of the world. Another fact that oil supply is going to finish enventually, so there is no other option for the rest of the world except to use renewable energy sources. so africa here has a strategic position. It has sun heat during the whole year everywhere. The sun heat can mean using solar renewable energy to supply many parts of the world or any part. There are very long rivers in Africa that can also be used for water-created energy supply. The water-created energy supply is already under planning from southern African region up to northern Africa and African countries are planning to extend this energy supply to Europe. The other fact of this imaginative view of the awaited African civilisation is glass created from sand. Glass can be created in many forms and might be used in many aspects and functions if it has gone under real focus as an option for living. One evidence that glass is used in construction of buildings and towers in many parts of the developed world. I think this can give an imaginative idea on how Africa is going to rely on to create a new civilisation.
Posted by Ahmed at 11:42 PM, January 27, 2006
Can Africa be green? A quetion!I said earlier that Africa will rely on renewable energy resources (sun, water, wind etc...) to create a new civilisation. This is due to its location in the heart of the world. Green energy makes earth cool more and more and this will create the environment to new conditions that the world is not experiencing now.I think africans should not accumulate ideas and say we want to make africa green in the fastest possible way. I think we should say: Let's leave this to the maturity of the awaited civilisation.WHY? To make the african civilisation last a s long as a civilisation can last. I hope you understand the idea.
Posted by Ahmed at 11:30 PM, April 17, 2006
I wanted to give you an update on the building of the United States of Africa I started back in 96 with Robert Wood - who together with me comprise The Wood Bros. Music group. We are still at: http://www.geocities.com/thewoodbrosmusic/ - but our NEW music is at: http://www.isound.com/music/wood_brothers_ca/ Our mission remains the same, to unite Africa as one nation and thus unite the world, in uniting Africa.God willing.* take a look at the Current site for the movement at:http://unitedstatesafrica.tripod.com/http://unitedstatesafrica.50megs.com/The United States of Africa - Please forward to anyone who has cried a tear for Africa and wants to see a change."There are no words to describe what I feel about the possibility of the achievement of The United States of Africa. The applause of the entire globe could not give this cause justice, and justice is what this cause will bring. I am sure that the US of Africa will mean the extinction of poverty and the promotion of world Unity. I know the day will come when its constitution is signed. It will be signed not with greed and power in mind, but instead with love and unity. My prayers and deepest salutations are with you all." – JaredWhile we understand the beginning of the USA for USAfrica may have an unusual genesis, the heart felt reasons behind the movement are unmistakable, and the need for a United States of Africa, is Undeniable.No continent in the world is better positioned than Africa, ( a United Africa ) to contribute to the welfare of Mankind over the next thousand years. As an ABC Night Line reporter covering Africa noted, "Africa is 98% virtually the same as it was a thousand years ago." An incredible vast land of undeveloped potential both for it's people and the world.In a United States of Africa, a citizen could freely travel from Gambia to South Africa to Algeria or anywhere on the continent to seek education, opportunity, commerce or the simple pleasure of tourist travel within their vast country.A common African currency much like the EU model affords the ability to buy and sell throughout the continent with a reliable backed currency. A transcontinental citizenship throughout Africa will one day become the envy of the free world.Much of Africa's third world debt could be relived if freedom and security of capitalism were able to thrive in any African country - state from taxes paid by companies involved in business in any African location. An immediate positive effect would arise from local, municipal and federal levels throughout Africa. Any and all of these possibilities can only arise from what can take place in a United States of Africa. With national borders being no more restrictive than state borders, allowing transcontinental travel, commerce and opportunity for all African citizens.A United States of Africa with the largest usable coastline in the world could one day be the country that enriches all of Mankind, feeds the world, heals the world, teaches the world and balances the world. There is so much more involved and the USA for USAfrica is not naive to the many levels that must be addressed, our point is the dialogue must begin at once, in the media, on the airwaves, in discussions and editorials.The concept of a United States of Africa must immediately be brought into public debate worldwide and among Africans themselves.Yours in peace and a United Africa,Mark WoodFounder, USA for USAfricahttp://unitedstatesafrica.50megs.com/http://www.isound.com/mp3s/wood_brothers_ca/http://www.isound.com/music/blue_turban_stone/http://www.isound.com/music/mark_wood_ca/Partner, The Wood Brothers Music http://www.geocities.com/thewoodbrosmusic/Publisher,The Green Valley ReporterICQ 72195575 www.GeoCities.com/GreenValleyReporter Online and Print: Serving the Mountain Communities of the Santa Clarita, Angeles Forest and Antelope Valley Communities.GreenValleyReporter@Journalist.com
Posted by Anonymous at 11:13 AM, May 07, 2006
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asks if there will soon be a “United States of AFrica”?
Chippla’s Weblog, asks if there will soon be a “United States of AFrica”? “Do these names mean anything to you: Thabo Mbeki, Olusegun Obasanjo, John Kufuor, Abdoulaye Wade, Meles Zenawi, Ahmed Ouyahia and Alpha Omar Konare? ...
posted by united states of africa @ 1:35 AM, August 28, 2006

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