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Know thyself

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EDITOR — OUR youth should know the world and everything useful in it, but from an African point of view. 

Put another way, they should know the world and whatever is worth learning from it, but do so in order to strengthen the position of Africa and to promote its interests. But for them to know Africa and to define its interests properly they need to know themselves first and foremost in regard to where they are coming from historically and where they would like to go as a race! 

Otherwise for them to have knowledge about the rest of the world which excludes Africa amounts to having no leg to stand on. Africa know thyself first and everything shall be added unto you! 

The fundamental questions to ask here are: How much has Africa invested in institutions, organisations and systems which, while informed by some of the best ideas available in the world, are designed to serve and consolidate African interests first and foremost? 

How has it come about that Africa is currently producing generations who are barely conscious of the epic journey which Africans have travelled in their quest for emancipation from slavery, colonisation and neo-colonialism? 

Why is Africa failing to bequeath its children and grandchildren the values, beliefs and practices steeped in its heroic and successful struggles against foreign domination? 

If Africa is to protect the freedom and independence which it fought for with tenacity, it has to invest heavily in its youth. 

The key challenge for Africa is how to protect the achievements of our liberation movements across Africa and how to reproduce those aspirations and ideals which motivated them and pass them on from one generation to the next. 

This is the legacy which our current institutions, be they academic or otherwise, are failing to put across to our youth in a manner which is relevant, timely and compelling. Right now, one of the biggest threats to our survival as a free continent is collective amnesia which haunts practically every nation in Africa. 

We only have to look at what happened in Libya recently where a sizeable chunk of the Libyan people opted to embrace Western countries as allies, especially Britain and France, in order to topple their own government. And where are they today! – Anonymous. 

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