France’s divide and rule tactic

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THE recent France-Africa Summit held in Paris demonstrates to what extent our colonisers never want to lose control of their divided former colonies.

Indeed, the Berlin Conference of 1884 was never meant to see this resource rich continent ever united again after the partition.

There are some who might see President Emmanuel Macron’s invitation of African leaders as a goodwill gesture.

We see through it, and are not impressed.

Although it was camouflaged as a conference to deal with the economic damage caused on Africa by COVID-19, the continent wasn’t as badly hit as France, the rest of Europe and the US.

And it is resources from Africa, exploited over the years, which can be relied upon to kick-start the badly bruised economy of the West.

If it is a conference on Africa, why invite some and leave others?

We also see this where debt relief is limited to selected countries, while countries like Zimbabwe and Sudan are left to survive under the harshest of punitive sanctions.

This is a cheap divide-and-rule tactic, so that some of those invited would feel they are a special African breed.

That is exactly what the founding fathers of the Organisation of African Unity (now African Union) were against when the African body was formed on May 25 1963.

And Macron had the cheek to hold this summit on the eve of Africa Day.

If this spirit was prevailing to this present day, those summoned would have turned down the invites, unless their counterparts were also invited. 

Of course, they didn’t and we can imagine the ‘feel good’ atmosphere as they enjoyed the lavish dinner hosted by Macron and his wife.

Little did it ever cross their minds that the dinner had been financed by resources from their countries.

And Africa’s resources, not COVID-19, was the reason for that conference.

That is why France invited top performing African economies in order to reposition itself following market share challenges created by India, China and Germany.

So this conference was part of their strategy to regain lost ground in their scramble for Africa’s resources. 

And the French, whose former President, a certain Jacques Chirac, once said: “Without Africa, France will slide down into the rank of a Third World,” know exactly what Africa means for their livelihood.

Indeed, they have already taken necessary measures to keep a firm grip on their former colonies through a colonial pact.

Through this pact, former colonies are obliged to keep their foreign currency reserves in the French Treasury.

This is not all.

These same colonies can borrow their money but with interest.

France also has ‘first right of refusal’ in the exploitation of any new resources in its former colonies.

Now then, if all your economic assets are in the hands of your former colonisers, to what extent can you consider yourself independent?

That is why co-operation with these compromised Francophone countries can never be guaranteed.  

And the French have available both the the stick and carrot to keep their former colonies in check.

The blue-eyed boys are always protected, while those considered  deviant are got rid of.   

Former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was killed for pushing a United States of Africa agenda, while Laurent Gbagbo became a guest at the International Criminal Court in the Hague.

Agenda 2063 seeks to see a united, peaceful and prosperous Africa.

Try as we might, our former colonisers will always throw spanners.

And unless Africa totally disengages from all vestiges of colonialism, Agenda 2063 will be very difficult to realise.

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