Obama and the fallacy of the African dream

Obama and the fallacy of the African dream
Published: 03 December 2017 (339 Views)
When then-Senator Barrack Obama won the presidential election in the USA, ahead of Republican Party nominee John McCain, on Tuesday, November 3 in 2008 – Africa as a whole celebrated the election of a man many people on the continent regard as a son of the African soil.

Ordinary Africans believed Obama could bring change to Africa, as they felt he was a man who could relate to the struggles of African people. His Kenyan lineage captured the imagination of Africa more than the legacy of Martin Luther King Jnr. ever will.

Obama seemingly plugged an emotional void in the soul of Africa, which had lingered unperturbed for an excruciatingly long period of time. And he laid bare for all to see, the dearth of young African personalities in positions of leadership in post-colonial political and economic affairs.

Obama oozes coolness and sophistication in buckets. He inspires dreams of an expansive nature much more than esteemed liberators like Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana did in 1957. What does this say about the state of Africa today?

The leaders of Africa have sorely struggled to secure socio-economic security for all for more than five decades. So millennials have begun to see hope in leaders like Obama. The fascination and respect Obama inspires in Africa, is a much sought after rarity in African politics only the late Nelson Mandela held in times gone by.

Mrs Obama is also highly popular in Africa. She fronted the #bringbackourgirls campaign calling for the release of 276 Chibok girls kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria. She is intelligent and articulate and appears to have formidable strength of character.

But is Africa truly short of phenomenal female leaders like Mrs Obama? Or do African men shamefully smother the voices and dreams of African women in the hope of perpetuating patriarchal dominance?

Where are the young African pioneers of today, who can develop technology-driven enterprises in Africa and create millions of decent jobs for Africans that are immigrating to Europe in shabby fishing boats?

We love to applaud the achievements of Mark Zuckerberg - and rightfully so, but is Africa promoting or stifling innovation for the sake of skewed policy considerations?

African leaders rush to congratulate leaders such as Theresa May and Donald Trump when they win elections in their respective countries, but largely fail to support democracy, or uphold the rule of law, or hold free and fair or peaceful elections in Zimbabwe, Kenya, Togo, Gabon, Gambia and Ivory Coast.

African leaders are quick to welcome democratic and peaceful political change overseas, but loathe seeing dynamic dispensations cropping up in Zimbabwe, Angola, Uganda, Egypt and Ethiopia.

Africans love to stand up for the rights of African-Americans on Twitter and Facebook, but ignore injustices suffered by fellow Africans in conflict zones like Darfur and South Sudan.

Africans have been all so eager to embrace the deeply personal African-American dream of Barrack Hussein Obama II; they have not discussed how the dream of a free and prosperous Africa remains solidly stuck in the fading hopes of 1957.

Follow Tafi Mhaka on Twitter and like his page on Facebook
Twitter: @tafimhaka
Facebook:  @tafiranyika / Tafi Mhaka

- Tafi Mhaka

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

ZCTU calls for resignation of Minister Gumbo

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 105 Views

Mnangagwa has to deliver and, urgently too

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 135 Views

Zanu-PF dictatorship, ideological dominance

by Vivid Gwede | 19 October 2018 | 87 Views

ZCTU, why spare Bulawayo council over rates hike

by Conway Tutani | 19 October 2018 | 71 Views

Motlanthe Commission risks playing into Zanu-PF agenda

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 103 Views

Councils challenged to generate own income

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 61 Views

Zimbabwe gender parity misses 50% mark, says Mohadi

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 52 Views

Zanu-PF official, sangoma jailed over pangolin scales

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 70 Views

Mliswa mocks Gender Commission

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 69 Views

Police harass senior Masvingo journalist

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 54 Views

Zimbabwe gold exports decline by 21%

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 75 Views

Zimbabwe drops in World Economic Forum rankings

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 64 Views

Village Inn exonerates Supa Mandiwanzira

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 58 Views

Zimbabwe army killings probe hots up

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 70 Views

Mthuli Ncube's 2% tax sparks confusion

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 72 Views

'ConCourt ruling to open floodgates of demos'

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 70 Views

'Zimbabwe diesel demand strikingly increasing'

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 51 Views

Tsvangirai estate sued

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 69 Views

Drug shortages hit Bulawayo hospitals

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 48 Views

Beitbridge outlines modernisation plan

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 52 Views

Wicknell Chivayo applies for discharge

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 38 Views

'Mangudya deserves our support'

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 34 Views

Zim man to stand trial in another twitter-related arrest

by Stephe Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 31 Views

Chamisa seeing ghosts, says army

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 123 Views

Deputy Minister demand evidence on $15 billion externalization

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 60 Views

Military working with police in law maintenance - Matemadanda

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 59 Views

Deputy minister Madiro encourages people to report incest cases

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 43 Views

Professor Manyureke under attack over her questions

by Sithabile Mafu | 19 October 2018 | 67 Views

Komichi demands V11 forms from ZEC

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 158 Views

Pupil misses exam after teacher's lashing

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 114 Views

Teacher, money-changer, fuel dealer, thigh vendor - all rolled in one

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 136 Views

Tsvangirai's girlfriend on police wanted list

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 143 Views

Betting house drops Ecocash, bond notes

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 94 Views

Mistress slapped with $25,000 suit

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 78 Views

Man disfigures ex-wife's face

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 69 Views

Wife crushes prophet's jewels

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 85 Views

Zimbabwe post-poll violence probe team assesses damages

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 72 Views