Way Forward for Africa – Part IV

by on Mar.08, 2014, under Leadership

6821216438_654375ecb7 AolinThis is part IV of a six-part article “Way Forward for Africa”


Cultures may not be as wise as laws, but they are always more popular-’ Benjamin Disraeli.

According to sociologists Barbara, Ross and Basirico culture is made up of languages, technologies, symbols and values. Culture touches on all aspects of life as such the worst form of colonization is colonization of one’s culture. The former colonial masters branded African cultures as uncouth and outdated. It is unfortunate that many Africans accepted that label. Africans have forsaken their beautiful traditions that kept their families together. Africans had a sacred respect for marriage but today divorce is as common as poverty. Divorce leads to numerous psychological effects which affect the productivity of the individuals involved and in turn it hinders a nations’ development.

Historically Africans’ respect for life has been unrivalled. Shading of innocent blood was a taboo and everybody who did it was sternly reprimanded. But today Africa is characterized with genocide and civil wars; we murder the young and energetic who are supposed to catapult our economies to higher levels. Any Africa who is interested in having a developed continent, should remember that there is no life without roots, culture is our roots.

It was our culture that fostered peace in African society. Neighbours were treated as relatives. Peace was achieved through negotiations. Through unity we built communities which enhanced peaceful stay. For Africa to move ahead we should treasure our culture of peace and unity.

Semi-literacy is a major threat to the African continent; semiliterate people are prone to develop Xenocentrism (a belief that what is foreign is the best) due to their limited information. They cannot analyse critically what they hear or see as a result they just adopt every foreign culture at the expense of the African culture. The semiliterate are likely to develop temporocentrism, where they believe that their time/season is more important than the past or future. This approach is dangerous because it disregards good values of the past and declares the future generations doomed. For us to see a better Africa we should not abandon our traditions and cultures that are developmental. 

With a big no, we should shun cultures that are barbaric and those that barricade our development. Imagine a man of 30years of age seated at home while the wife works in the farm, simply because in that community men do not work in the farms. That is ridiculous and laziness. The wife comes home to prepare lunch, while the man is still seated. Men and women who spend their time kissing the glass instead of guiding their children to grow in fine citizens should have no business decrying the indiscipline in the society. Africans should denounce any culture that promotes such behaviours. Africans should be in control of their culture in order to be influenced positively by it. The way forward for Africa entails holding firmly to all progressive and positive culture as well flee from all negative and cruel cultures.

Devotion to Work

‘Unless you are committed to your work, people won’t take you serious’, David.

Industrious is the single most important ingredient for development. Dr. David in his book “Magic of Thinking Big” writes that ‘to harvest money you should plant seeds that grow money.’ It simply means no industrious, no progress. Growing seeds is hard work and it demands commitment. Motivation will get us started but only commitment will keep us in the game. It is through passion for work that we are going to build our continent. Africans should capture its lost glory, we are hard workers, we built America (as slaves), we can build Africa too. We should borrow a leaf from Japanese (arguably the most industrious people on this planet) as a result of their industriousness Japanese enjoys the second largest economy.

The call to work is answered fully when the citizens of a nation that demand their government to work are themselves playing their parts (working). In countries with economical problems, it should be said that the greatest asset is creativity. If we wait on the government to deliver jobs to us, then we are likely to die before it does. We should learn to use the little which is at our disposal. “Everyone is always waiting for the big breaks, however the reality on the ground is that real breaks in life are much smaller”, the wise said. African citizens have to work, remember ‘it is by following river that you end up at the sea.’

Cultures where men are not supposed to go to farms should be eradicated. Agriculture being the backbone of the continent’s economy, it should be embraced by all family members. We cannot sustain lazy individuals in an ailing-continent. Many are the times we say that culture is dynamic hence any culture that hinders Africa’s progress should be seen as an enemy to the continent’s existence.

Any leader who is interested in developing Africa should begin by motivating its population to love work and shun laziness. If all doctors shall be motivated to eradicate diseases, teachers to eliminate ignorance and leaders to cure bad governance and corruption, Africa will rise to the top in on time. Our future is in our hands. Our future is in our love for work.

Look out for Part V of this article, where one more solution to African problems will be discussed.


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