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Tuesday, 29 May 2012

African Beauty, Threatened By Western Civilization

Photo: An African child shows her
beauty in a traditional Ghanaian outfit

Our `most cherished values` begin to end, the moment we become silent over the things that matter. –Martin Luther King Jr. 

By Honourable Saka 
Africa Is Unique

Africa is a continent that is very rich, not only in natural resources but also in cultural diversities. Africans are arguably the most diverse people on earth. Most people on the continent are quite diverse from country to country and from region to region. Thus, the Francophone African countries are slightly unique when compared with the Commonwealth African countries. More than 3,000 unique ethnic groups are recognized in Africa. African traditions, customs, languages, and culture are unique and also vary from country to country.

In spite of the diversities, the ultimate African identity as portrayed by the colour of their skin is what makes Africans all over the world, one one people, with a common destiny.

In the light of this, Peter Tosh, an African reggae legend from Jamaica, said this to Africans all over the world:
“…Don't care where you come from; as long as you're black, you're an African. It doesn’t matter whether you were born in Cuba, Portland, France, Brooklyn, Brixton, Canada, Germany, Russia; you’ve got the identity of an African. Don’t mind your nationality. Never mind your religious denomination because it is only a tool for segregation. Whether you’re a Methodist, a Catholic, a Muslim; whether you go to the Church of God or whatever your religion; there is no rejection. Even if your complexion is high or low, you’re still an African. Be proud of your African identity...”
By this, one can clearly understand that the African identity goes far beyond mere nationalities, place of birth and religious denominations. As far as the African identity is concerned, there cannot be and should never be expressions like: African-American, British-African, Afro-Latino, Franco Africana, etc. The African is and will always be an African regardless of where he/she was born.

African Culture

Culture can be defined as the way of life of a people in a given society. It is characterized by beliefs, traditions, customs, religions and others. A people’s culture can be seen in the food they eat, the kind of clothes they wear, their music, dance, values (what is acceptable to them as a people) and to some extent, their perception of life.

Like other cultures, the modern African culture places emphasis on personal appearance.  Beads, jewellery and other similar items, remained an important personal accessory in the life of the African woman. Many pieces of such jewellery are made of cowry shells, wood and similar materials. African cultures are diverse and varied; not static, and like most of the world have been impacted upon by external forces.

Dignity was paramount for African marriage
During the post-colonial era, African women and African fashion played an important role in showcasing 
Africa’s beauty in what was then referred to as “The pride of the African woman”. As the African fashion 
gained momentum, African women demonstrated the pride of their beauty, by dressing with dignity and 
making sure that all sensitive parts of their bodies were adequately covered. Practices such as indecent 

exposure; exposed cleavage, naked tummy, the exposure of all other sensitive body parts were completely unacceptable to the African woman who placed her dignity far above anything else.  As a result African 

women were highly respected by society because dignity and respect were very essential requirements for 
them to find a responsible man for marriage.

Many African girls are influenced
by powerful musicians like Beyonce
However, the advent of western civilization: hip-hop music, R&B, and indecent dressing portrayed by fashion, has recently cast a dark shadow over the pride of the African beauty. African women of today, both young and old can shamelessly walk the streets virtually naked in the name of fashion. Some even go to church improperly attired: luscious boobs exposed, transparent dresses, mini skirts and all manner of extreme body exposure that only seek to harass their male counterparts. 

They watch movies where such lifestyles are considered to be “hot” and “sexy”. Therefore the African woman thinks that it is alright to expose her precious assets for the world to behold even if it means risking her dignity. Little or no attention whatsoever is paid to human conscience. After all, being “sexy” is all that matters.

The Cost of Africa's Inferiority Complex 
According to one estimate, African girls of today spend more money on fashion than what they spend on books and food combined. From pedicure to manicure, skin bleaching cosmetics, hair relaxers, wigs, weaves, eyelashes, nails, among others. Many women in the universities even go to the extreme: they blow part of their school fees on items that will make them look sexy.

Take Nigeria for example, it is estimated that Nigeria has a population of about 155million with about 56% between the ages of 16-54 years old. Out of these age group women are more than 40million. The details are as follows:
Male = 44,296,228 Female = 42,534,542
Source: CIA’s World Fact Book.

Therefore with over 40 million women in Nigeria, if each one of them spends at least $1 a week on any of the above items, how much will that be? At least that is $40million dollars per week; making it about $150/month. Mind you this figure just applies to Nigeria only. What about the women across all the 54 African countries combined?

Every day, Korean and Brazilian families thank black women for giving their countries $16.4 million dollars each. The low self-esteem of African women is making them very rich and they’re happy about that.

Throughout Africa, women spend billions of dollars every week, to import Brazilian hair, Peruvian hair, Korean hair, Asian hair, European wigs, weaves, eyelashes, artificial nails and many other stuff, all because the African woman does not appreciate her God-given natural beauty anymore. She bleaches her skin and spends so much on her hair because she wants to look Asian, a European or American. She believes that is sexy! The result: cancer and other numerous untold consequenes. This is so because the African woman has been brainwashed to look down upon her identity and to boycott her natural beauty for someone else’s. Our women have disposed their natural beauty and are rather paying so much for Asian and Western fashion. In fact, it costs African women hundreds of billions of dollars every year to keep their artificial make ups, their artificial hairs, the nails, and all the fashion they have blindly copied from other societies at the expense of their God-given beauty.

At the same time, the African fashion has been thrown to the dogs. Africa therefore spends all these money to create jobs for Asia, Europe and the Americas, whilst unemployment and poverty is becoming the destiny of the African people. Most African relationships are unstable because African women of today would demand all that their partners may not be able to afford. Africa needs mental revolution.

Bob Marley warned Africans to emancipate themselves from mental slavery, yet Africans wouldn’t listen.
If African women are throwing their pride, natural beauty and their culture to the dogs, whom do we expect, to cherish and to promote the natural beauty of the African woman?

What About The Young Men?

The strategy of poisoning young black minds
The problem of indecent exposure, is not only limited to the ladies. A very common practice with boys of today is 'Pant sagging'. It first became known in Ghanaian parlance, as “Otto Pfister”.
'Otto Pfister' is a kind of dressing in which the youth, especially boys, deliberately pull their trousers/shorts down below the waistline to the extent of almost dropping off and exposing part of their buttocks or their boxer shorts.

In West Africa, “Otto Pfister” became popular in 1991 after the Black Starlets, Ghana’s Under-17 soccer team, won that year’s trophy in Italy. The then German Coach, Otto Pfister, who led the team to success, was fond of dressing that way.

It is believed that “pant sagging” actually originated from prisons in the United States, as a way to display homosexuality. Therefore the male inmates had little or no difficulty in identifying the homosexuals in their midst ‘if the need be’.

The practice is very common with hip-hop artistes on stage performance as well.  Africa’s young men of today have allowed their minds to be poisoned by hip-hop stars and gangster movies. This is a dangerous development.

The Role of The Entertainment Industry
Western style music such as R&B, Rap, Hip Hop, and others are gradually having negative influence on African youth. Of course the music and the movie industries have offered opportunities to many Africans. It has created jobs for many and in some cases projected African countries on the positive spotlights. South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, the Congo are a few examples.
However, the danger is that most of the artistes involved are blindly promoting the indecent lifestyle in a manner that sharply contradicts the African norms and values. The entertainment industry in Africa therefore has a huge responsibility to promote African values, especially the dress code which showcases the pride of the African beauty. The movie and the music industry must join forces together to fight the moral decadence in the youth of today. For instance, fighting corruption cannot be a mere political exercise. The movie industry could showcase scenarios in movies where a few responsible politicians are able to stand firm and resist acts of corruption and demonstrate their obedience to the law as well as promoting acts of patriotism.
There is no doubt that many public officials are corrupt in Africa. However, there are also many others who have been able to stand up for what is right and resisted all forms of corruption. The music industry should also check and ensure that their video clips are not dominated by acts of violence and unnecessary sexual scenes. Such platforms should rather serve as opportunity for the artistes to promote African values. We cannot allow the scenes on our screens to be dominated by acts of violence, corruption and unnecessary indecent exposure. Something seriously needs to be done about this before African beauty disappears from the system in the near future.

Appeal To The Youth
Dear sisters and women of Africa. Most of you have collectively already spent so much trillions of dollars to keep the business environment in Asia, Europe and Latin America alive. At the same time, the African industries that produce the fashion that suits our culture are gradually collapsing. I believe such  money could do a good job here in Africa and create job opportunities if only you could cherish your African beauty and patronize African fashion. Your African beauty, if well nurtured could attract women from all other backgrounds to celebrate you and make you proud someday.

Martin Luther: Black is beautiful

Martin Luther King Jr. one of the most respected personalities in history has demonstrated 
the pride of black beauty by calling on Africans around the world to cherish their identity. 

Therefore the "Black is beautiful" cultural movement aimed to dispel the notion that black people's natural features such as skin colour, facial features and hair are inherently ugly. The movement is responsible for the popularity of the “Afro” hair style. It gave a generation of Africans born in America, the courage to feel good about who they are and how they look.

African lady with a natural Afro hair
African women please cherish your African pride.  Do not bleach your skins. Keep your complexion because black is beautiful.  Sometimes you could keep your Afro as well because it is beautiful. 

You only need a change of mind-set and the world will celebrate your beauty and accord you the pride that is rightfully yours. Do not expose yourselves unnecessarily. You are unique and your natural beauty is beyond what you can imagine. Never allow a few musicians elsewhere to brainwash you.

For all you know, they probably have no idea what it means to be an African.

Finally, to the guys I say be disciplined. Show some dignity for African values in your dressing. Let us cherish our values because that is the only pride we have as a people.

Long live Africa,
Long live the African diaspora.

About Honourable SAKA
The author is a regular writer and a political analyst on African affairs, and a well-known social commentator in Africa. He is the editor of “The Doctor’s Report”, your most reliable source of critical analysis on African affairs. He is a strong Pan-Africanist, a youth activist and the founder of the “Leaders of Tomorrow”, a transformational and inspirational group of possible future leaders. Please visit his blog and reach him by Email  

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Multi-Party Democracy In Africa: An Imperialist Tool For Conflicts, Divisions And Civil Wars

Battles broke out between protesters and soldiers
 in Nigeria's northern city of Kano as President Goodluck Jonathan
was declared the winner of the 2011 elections

By Honourable Saka
Case study: Kenya, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Burundi, Ethiopia… 
The 20th century saw many conflicts in Africa, breaking out along ethnic divisions. For instance, according to an African researcher Abdalla Bujra, it took only the Ibos to start a major civil war in Nigeria – a highly fractionised  society. The Ibos were cohesive and well organised. Besides, the civil wars in Uganda, the Sudan, Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Sierra Leone were and are being carried out by rebel movements which are organised across ethnic lines. Therefore the influence that tribalism and ethnicity have had on many conflicts in Africa some years ago, cannot be in doubt. Yet, many researchers hold different views about the true nature of conflicts in Africa today.
Dr Anke Hoeffler, a researcher at the Centre for the Study of African Economies, at the Oxford University suggests that from the 1990s, Africa has seen a reduction in the prevalence of civil war and that some countries with long and devastating civil wars are now at peace. Angola, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Rwanda are said to be such examples.
However, in the past few years, conflicts and bloodshed are beginning to show up their ugly heads across the continent once again. The causal factors have been attributed to the search for “democracy”, the holding of political elections, bad economic policies, boundary and territorial disputes, among others.
 Some causes of conflicts in Africa
It is believed that political and economic development failures have been the root cause of Africa's political instability. Others also suggests that the rising conflicts in Africa are as a result of bad economic policies which are often imposed and directed from abroad, notably Washington, London and Paris.
Oil in flames: Thousands of Nigerian protesters clashed with
 police during a fuel subsidy removal protest that led scores
dead and many others wounded

An example is the recent IMF imposed policies of fuel subsidy removal which almost threw Nigeria and other West African countries into chaos. Although the situation was finally put under control at some point, it can be remembered that the clashes between the people and the security forces left scores dead and many others wounded.
Conflicts have also broken out between many African countries as a result of the artificial boundaries created by the colonial rulers which often put some neighbouring countries at odd with each other. Some examples include: the Eritrean–Ethiopian War that took place from May 1998 to June 2000. The tension between North Sudan and South Sudan, Africa's longest civil war, where countless people have died is another clear example.
In spite of these, the globalist and their corporate mainstream media, also try hard to link conflicts in Africa with climate change. The BBC recently reported: “Climatic factors have been cited as a reason for several recent conflicts. One is the fighting in Darfur in Sudan that according to UN figures has killed 200,000 people and forced two million more from their homes”.
Even though some of the above-listed views regarding conflicts in Africa are to some extent credible, they are just a tip of the iceberg, especially when one critically looks at the emerging bigger picture: wars of democracy and electoral disputes in Africa.
 The Bigger Picture
For the past 15 years, the most dangerous and most frequent cause of conflicts, divisions and wars in many peaceful African countries have not been as a result of tribalism nor ethnic divide as the media would have us believe.
Ouattara's rebel forces massacred an entire
 christian community at Duekoue, Ivory Coast, 2011

However, many of the civil wars recently seen in Africa have been as a result of “democracy”, electoral disputes and political clashes which often left tens of thousands of people dead and many others wounded. A few list of the countries which has experienced electoral disputes/clashes  where many people were reported to have lost their lives are: Ethiopia (2005), Kenya (2007), Zimbabwe (2008), Burundi (2010), Guinea (2010), Ivory Coast (2011), South Sudan (2011), DR Congo (2011) Uganda (2011),  and many more.
Nigeria's elections that were held in April (2011) were hailed by many as the fairest in the nation's history. Yet, at least 800 people were killed in campaign violence. The presidential election set off rioting amidst sectarian killings in northern Nigeria that left more than 800 dead. Also in Rwanda, intolerance of political opposition was unchanged since the 2010 elections. Many were reported to have died as a result of the electoral violence.

Obama, a strong force that stood behind his
cousin Odinga in the 2007 Kenyan elections

Recently in Liberia where the elections were boycotted by the opposition, many feared that the situation could even give way to civil war again.
Although the elections in South Sudan  (2011) was relatively peaceful, government forces attacked civilians in the disputed border area of Abyei and in two other states that lie north of the border with the South (Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan). The Sudanese government was again accused of attacks on civilians in Darfur. This is one of the reasons why President Omar al-Bashir currently faces an outstanding arrest warrant from the "kangaroo court" ICC- the  International Court of Criminals.
Election violence in Kenya left thousands dead
Meanwhile the thought of the clashes in Kenya and recently in Ivory Coast sends a cold shiver down my spine. The images were too gruesome and very disturbing. But these were as a result of the so-called democracy. After the Kenyan massacre, it took the mediation process, facilitated by the then Ghanaian President and African Union Chairman John Kufuor, and Kofi Annan, then UN Secretary General to end the bloodshed, with a power-sharing deal that saw Odinga become the prime minister and Kibaki serving as the president.
What about the Congo? Ethiopia? Even that supposed success story for African Democracy, Senegal, saw blood in the streets.
Wars That Sought To Establish Democracy:
Apart from those wars that broke out in the mist of elections disputes, many brutal and more aggressive wars have been launched in other African countries under the guise of establishing democracy. There was the Mozambican Civil War (1977), Liberia (2003), Uganda (1990s), Libya (2011) and many more. These have resulted in untold deaths, destruction of societies and to a larger extent the destabilization of Africa.
Take a look at Libya where over 100,000 people were slaughtered by NATO all in the name of “Multi-Party Democracy”.  After completely destroying the   jamahiriya system, what has been the result? Are the Libyan people better off? What aboutthose suffering in cages and the chaos that will forever follow the periodic elections?
Those who propose Western multi-party democracy as the way out for Africa have argued that it promotes peace and stability, and fosters national unity at the same time. However, Western “democracy” in Africa creates just the opposite. In Kenya, the Kikuyu, an ethnic minority installed in power by the departing British Empire has to win the election or risk losing everything to their larger tribal rivals, the Luo. What was the result? Elections were held, thousands died and hundreds of thousands displaced. This upcoming election may see even worse, writes Thomas C. Mountain an independent journalist reporting from Eritrea.
Africa, What Are Our Priorities?
The  concept of democracy  has been given a misplaced priority over other more serious and important human necessities in Africa, whilst African indigenous democracy such as that in the Libyan Jamahiriya, are brutally opposed by Africa's former colonial occupiers.  Take a look at Liberia and Nigeria; they have Plenty “democracy”, but No electricity. Poor African countries spend billions of dollars every 4 years on political elections, yet they don’t have billions for healthcare, education and other social needs. 

Guiniea worms, malaria fever and many diseases are killing our people because “there is no money”, yet billions are always available for democracy. Our healthcare systems are in complete jeopardy because money is not available. As a result, even our leaders, who are the major stakeholders of our various countries, have NO confidence in our healthcare. Many of them therefore always travel overseas to seek medical treatment and some of them even die there. 

Take a look at President Umaru Yar'Adua the former president of Nigeria who passed away in Saudi Arabia (2010) whiles receiveing medical treatment. Again, Levy Patrick Mwanawasa,   the third President of Zambia died in France (2008) whiles receiving medical treatment. Also in Ghana is the former finance minister, Honourable Kadwo Baa Wiredu, who passed away while receiving medical treatment abroad. Many of the women also travel abroad just to have their babies safely delivered because they have no confidence in the healthcare system. Yet, whiles we continue to cut the budget on healthcare and education, the amount allotted to holding elections continue to increase every year. What are our priorities?
Even in Ghana where the people were hailed by the Obama administration as a shining example of democracy, the country was on the brink of civil war when many opposition leaders threatened incited their supporters to rise up and occupy the electoral commission. Members of the opposition were directed to arm themselves with machetes, cutlasses, and all forms of weapons and be prepared to turn Ghana into “Kenya”, if their expectations of winning the elections were dashed by the outcome of the official results. Thousands besieged the electoral commission's head office with anger chanting war slogans.
“Dozens of angry protesters (in Ghana) wielding machetes and sticks attacked passing vehicles and local journalists after partial results from the run-off vote gave the opposition candidate a lead”.
It took the maturity of the then political leadership to put the love for the nation ahead of political aspirations, to help prevent a potential civil war.
In fact, the coming 2012 elections in Ghana is an exercise that poses a serious threat to the peace and security of Ghanaians as a whole with some opposition leaders already declaring war in the country. Therefore the question that needs to be asked is: what kind of system is it that always puts African nations on the brink of civil wars every 4 or 5 years? For how long must the ordinary Africans continue to die as a result of election conflicts because of political differences, and for the benefit of some corrupt, puppet politicians who seeks to enrich themselves at the expense of the masses? How could these cycles be avoided and to ensure national unity?
Nkrumah’s Proposal: a One-Party State Democracy
After considering the case of Ivory Coast where election contest ended in war, one point became clear: If Gbagbo and Ouattara were both members of the same party (one-party state), any competition for president would have unlikely led to a war. Because regardless of whoever wins, their party would emerge as the winner and the followers of either candidate would see themselves as members of the same party. The situation would be exactly as Republicans in America, voting to elect a leader. Whether the winner is Ron Paul or Mitt Romney, will never result in any conflict among the supporters. The supporters would always emerge united because they would see themselves as members of the same party. But in the case of the current multi-party system, the competing sides see themselves as  two opposition groups or “enemies”. Also, the current practice of “winner takes all”, makes the competition a do-or-die affair. Therefore when one candidate wins, the losing side can easily mobilize his people against the winning side as was the case in Ivory Coast, Kenya and currently Russia. In such a situation, it also becomes much easier for any foreign influence to manipulate the opposition groups against the winning side. After all they’re different candidates, different parties and with different motives.
However, if Ivory Coast were to be a one-party state, the conflict between Gbagbo and Ouattara would not have happened. Because as members of the same party, they would always find a way to work together, regardless of whoever wins. Also, their followers would see themselves as the same people with the same vision. They would see the bigger picture: like soldiers of the same army. Each candidate may have a different ideology, but at the end of the day, the people and the party are one.  Under such a system, national unity can easily be forged better than the current multi-party system where the people have been divided along political differences. The members of the same party cannot easily be fighting among themselves as they would with an opposition party. This system, according to Kwame Nkrumah is what Africa needs; not the current multi-party system which has brought about divisions and conflicts between different political groups which takes the entire nation on the brink of war every 4 to 5 years.
Therefore in his book "Consciencism" (pg.100) Nkrumah states:
A people’s parliamentary democracy with a one-party state system is better able to express and satisfy the common aspirations of a nation as a whole, than a multiple-party parliamentary system, which is in fact a ruse for perpetuating, and covers up, the inherent struggle between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’.
The globalists and their imperial powers know this fact. Therefore they used the old tactics of divide and conquer strategy for their imperial objective. First, they divided Africa into many smaller and weaker nations. Then they divide the nations into many political groupings, manipulating one group against the other. There is no doubt that multi-party democracy is the new strategy that is been used to promote this "divide and conquer" strategy. But in the case of Africa, the division is becoming bloodier and much more dangerous. Africans need to wake up to this reality.

Qaddafi’s Proposal: a No-Party State Democracy
On the other hand, Libyan revolutionary leader Mu'ammar Qaddafi, who drew on the experiences of other revolutionaries before him including Kwame Nkrumah, proposed a more traditional style of democracy, in fact completely doing away with political parties. Instead, in 1977 the Libyan people were all given local People's Congresses where they themselves became the legislators, thus also doing away with politicians.  Government administration and departments were replaced by People's Committees, which were nominated from the Congresses and accountable to them. All proceedings were broadcast live across the nation, long before the west dared to broadcast the embarrassing images of their politicians who misbehave and make a mockery of those who voted for them.
"The Green Book" was penned by Qaddafi to explain this original concept of direct participatory democracy, and a new word was invented to describe the "self-governing masses society" or "state without a government" or "people's authority": Jamahiriya. These ideas are taking root among many not only in Africa but around the world, with anInternational People's Conference Organization providing information on this "jamahiri" democracy, and an International Green Charter Movementadvocating it along with other rights and freedoms which were originally legislated by the Libyan people in their People's Congresses during their June 1988 sessions.
No matter whether one advocates "one party" or "no party" democracy in Africa, both are clearly more suited to African history and culture, where consensus and participation are traditional values in society, rather than delegation and representation, which are the pillars of the more remote style of "democracy" which European colonial powers developed and then imposed upon their former colonies around the world. Even now in European countries, the people have apparently had enough of the spectacle of this style of democracy, which excludes them whilst essentially serving elites: the recent political developments across Europe are testimony of this.
They too are looking at alternatives, some advocating "one party" democracy under the ideology of communism, with others (greens, anarchists, and a wide range of other ideas) advocating a "no party" democracy. So far, both groups are united on protests against the state, which is seen as benefiting wealthy elites at the expense of the masses of the people, leading to increasing instability in Europe.
  1. Kwame Nkrumah (1964) "Consciencism". Panaf Books: London
Honourable Dr Saka
The author is a regular writer and a political analyst on African affairs, and a well-known social commentator in Africa. He is the editor of “The Doctor’s Report”, your most reliable source of critical analysis on African affairs. Please visit his blog at:  He is a strong Pan-Africanist, a youth activist and the founder of the “Leaders of Tomorrow”, a transformational and inspirational group of possible future leaders. He can be reached on Email:

Wednesday, 2 May 2012


(An Appeal To The President of The Republic of Ghana)

By: Honourable Dr Saka                                                                                            
April 30, 2012
The President of Ghana
Office of The President
P.O. Box 1627,
Osu Accra, Ghana

Excerpt:  Ghana and Africa need millions of Kwame Nkrumah today to take us through the next stage of our economic independence. But the only way to produce millions of Nkrumah is when the youth study and understand what he has written.

The key to Africa's political & economic challenges

Barack Obama (Accra, July 2009)
“We must start from the simple premise that Africa’s future is up to Africans.  ..We’ve learnt that it will not be giants like Nkrumah and Kenyatta who will determine Africa’s future. Instead, it will be you -- the men and women in Ghana’s parliament and the people you represent. It will be the young people brimming with talent and energy and hope who can claim the future that so many in previous generations never realised.”

Ghana, Africa’s Shining Star                                 
Since independence, Ghanaians on many occasions have made the nation and Africa in general very proud. From political stability, economic growth, sports, science and technological inventions, etc. Ghanaians have demonstrated their maturity and their determination to excel in every sphere of human endeavour. This been demonstrated from post-independence to the 21st century. However, the positive side of this determination often escape the good books of history. This is because our African culture is often disregarded by those who write the history books. The African has been brainwashed to look down upon himself and boycott his culture: his food, clothing, arts, beliefs, institutions, his educational systems; all other products of human work and thought, and to a larger extent, his own domestic products.
In his book “Consciencism” (pg.63) Kwame Nkrumah thus wrote:
“Our history needs to be written as the history of our society, not as the story of European adventures. African society must be treated as enjoying its own integrity; its history must be a mirror of that society, and the European contact must find its place in this history only as an African Experience”.

Today, there is an abundance of evidence available in Ghana, which proves beyond all reasonable doubt that all kinds of inventions (just visit the KNUST in Kumasi), our ability to re-engineer all kinds of products, including producing cars in this country is no longer a dream but a reality. As Ossei Nkrumah wrote as far back in 2007, many Ghanaians have demonstrated the ability to manufacture cars right here in Ghana. This should be good news for any serious nation determined to succeed by relying on indigenous technology to advance its development. Many of these inventions have been well-documented in the various departments at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), including a number of polytechnics across the country. Yet, after many years, our determination as a government, a country and a people, to tap into these available capabilities, remains to be seen.

This attitude is why Bob Marley sung:
…in the abundance of water, the fool is thirsty”.

The Concept of Domestication
Many years ago, Mr Dan Lartey of blessed memory, one of the political leaders of Ghana, proposed the concept of “Domestication” as the way forward, not only for Ghana, but for Africa as a whole. “Domestication”, in its simplest terms was explained by Dan Lartey as follows:
“Produce what we use; use what we produce.”  
Of course, by this, he did not mean to suggest that Ghana shouldn't import anything at all. However, Mr Lartey, like Kwame Nkrumah understood very well that an African nation like Ghana, which has over 70% of land that is fertile for agriculture, cannot continue with the habit of her usual importation of rice, chicken, tomato paste, fruit juice, sugar, cooking oil, shoes, tooth pick, and many others; when as a matter of fact, with the correct political mind-set, we as a nation can produce all the above items here in Ghana and export them abroad.

To emphasize this concept of domestication, even president Barack Obama when he visited Ghana in July 2009, had this to say:
 I want to see Ghanaians not only self-sufficient in food, I want to see you exporting food to other countries and earning money. You can do that.” (Barack Obama, July 2009)

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (UNFAO), Ghana spends more than 1.2 billion dollars annually on rice imports, which rose from 121,000 metric tonnes in (1993) to 507,600 in (2002). As of 2010, this figure had tripled! Instead, Ghana's domestic rice production has gradually declined so much in the past decade that local rice farmers in the country now produce only 30% of the country's requirement with the remaining two-thirds, worth over $2billion always imported. In fact, the UNFAO, has repeatedly warned that Ghana’s over-reliance on imported rice is becoming a serious concern.

To understand the serious nature of this issue, first let’s take a look at a snapshot of a few Ghana’s imports:

1.      Vehicles other than railway (14.1%)
2.      Mineral fuels, oils, distillation products (13.8%)
3.      Boilers, machinery, nuclear reactors, etc. (12.4%)
4.      Electrical and electronic equipment (10%)
5.      Cereals (11.1%)
6.      Others….

Source: World Trade Organisation, International Trade Center

A second look at the above list reveals that, Ghana at the present condition has the technology and enough resources that should enable us completely abolish the importation of cereals especially rice, and begin the efforts to gradually reduce the importation of vehicles, machinery, and many more.  Just take a trip to Accra and visit the Apostle Dr Safo Kantanka. The man has invested so much of his resources in the manufacturing of cars, tractors, various plants and machinery, TV sets, household appliances and many more. Above all, Apostle Safo Kantanka has invested so much in farming and schools! The man owns huge acres of farms across the country Ghana. Of course there are many other Ghanaians who are equally trying in their own small ways to contribute to the development of the nation in this regard. Some of them are in Kumasi Suame Magazine. Also visit the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology and you will be amazed as to what you will discover at the various departments. At the Department of Physics, Mechanical/Electrical Engineering, etc. many discoveries have been made by our young students all of them, well-documented in their theses. Students have successfully designed and assembled machines, cars; they have designed and successfully assembled radio transmitting equipment. All what is needed is the right sense of leadership, the commitment to support these initiatives and Ghana could soon overtake South Africa. But what are we as a nation waiting for? Do we still need another 50 years before we take the first step? Ghana needs a policy shift. The time to act is now! Remember, if Ghana is truly determined to succeed, then “We’re only an attitude away from success” (John C. Maxwell).

If only we can take the first bold step, there will be huge employment opportunities that could follow to the benefit of majority of our unemployed youth. Just imagine if Apostle Safo’s tractors, cars, TVs, generators, etc. were to be produced on a mass scale. His tractors could benefit our farmers to boost their productivity. Taxes could be collected from the industries that will emerge out of these efforts. The benefits could redeem us from the sin of unqualified begging. But are we as usual waiting for him to die before we queue up to sing praises upon him? May God forbid! What such great men deserve cannot be a “befitting burial”. Mr President, please hear our humble cry. Ghanaians, let us believe in ourselves and take action. This will motivate the rest of Ghanaians both home and abroad to develop a sense of patriotism. There are many Africans abroad, with wonderful degrees, qualifications and skills. Yet, as the time goes by, many of them are wasting their lives abroad, doing all kinds of menial jobs: cleaning, washing plates/dishes, sweeping the streets of Europe and America. This shouldn't be the destiny of the black man! All what these people need is a little motivation to encourage them to come back home and help build Africa.

Your Excellency, after 55yrs of our independence, isn't it possible for the nation Ghana to take the concept of ‘domestication’ very serious? Isn’t it shocking that Ghana in spite of our vast agricultural land, and though majority of the population’s main occupation is farming; yet the nation cannot produce enough food to feed her people, to enable us abolish this annual culture of rice and chicken importation? For how long must we continue to take loans from the IMF and the World Bank and use this money to continue importing rice and chicken? Mr President, have we forgotten so soon that many of us: MPs, ministers, Council of State, applauded Obama just a few years ago? Let us remind ourselves one more time:
“Aid is not an end in itself. The purpose of foreign assistance must be creating the conditions where it’s no longer needed. I want to see Ghanaians not only self-sufficient in food, I want to see you exporting food to other countries and earning money. You can do that”. Barack Obama (Accra July, 2009).
After three years, the question still remains: what measures have we as a nation taken to ensure that Ghana is self-sufficient in food and also has the capacity to export food to other countries? It is very sad that such measures have always been in “the pipeline” but never materialised. Unfortunately the MEDIA which ought to put pressure on the government to show commitment to these initiatives has deliberately refused to put up this topic for national discussion. Almost every day’s discussion on our radios and TVs have been dominated by issues about personal affairs of politicians whiles serious issues as raised above have often escaped the headlines. As we continue to look up to the West to ‘solve all our problems for us’ with aid, for as long as they can afford, let us also remember that Africa’s future is up to Africans. President Obama in a few years ago made it clear that Aid is not an end in itself. He expects to see Ghanaians not only self-sufficient in food; he wants to see Ghana exporting food, cars, to other countries and earning money. He knows we can do that. So what are we waiting for?

Mr President, I know you will like to see Ghana become industrialised in the next 45 years. This however cannot come by magic. For it is said that a journey of 45 years begins with a step. We need to take certain bold new steps from the year 2012. We cannot continue with the same old ways of doing things and expect to get a different result. Our current most cherished democracy much move beyond holding peaceful elections. We need to invest in our people on the field of science and technology. We also need to believe in ourselves. Yes, we can do it!
Henry Ford was right when he said:    
“Whether you think you can or you think you can’t – you are right”
Economic Policies: Ghana vs Others
Since independence, India and its people have been committed to the task of promoting the spread of science and technology as one of the most important elements of national development (credit: Science and Technology Policy of India, 2001). Also, in the Middle East is Iran. Although the Islamic Republic of Iran has been under tough sanctions for the past 30years, the country has been able to make many breakthroughs in the fields of science and technology. Thanks to the concept of ‘domestication’. Today, with the commitment from the government, almost everything in the country is made by Iranians.

Here in Ghana, we do not even believe in ourselves. Almost every major project the government decides to undertake, it’s either awarded to a Chinese firm, a Korean company, an American or a British consultant somewhere. Your Excellency, I am not at all suggesting that the nation should not consult other countries in areas where our technical expertise are limited. However, the extent to which the local Ghanaian expert has been neglected is my worry. The sad part of it is that, in most cases it is the ordinary Ghanaian whose energy does the real work, while these consultants give mere ‘guidance & technical advice’. Fifty five years ago, Ghana and Malaysia, started from the same spot. But today, we all know where we are as a country. Instead of us to manage the assets which our founding fathers left for us, we have shamefully disposed them in the name of ‘privatization’.

Kwame Nkrumah as he wept wrote in his book: “The Struggle Continues” (pg.19)
“You have seen with your own eyes the shameful disposal of Ghana’s assets. Over hundred state corporations have been sold. Our state hotels are now foreign owned. The 20-mile rubber plantation developed by the State Farms Corporation has been handed over to the Firestone Rubber Company of America. The whole economic situation is the negation of in independent economic policy and a downward sell out to other American and foreign capitalist financial interests.”
Of course it wasn’t just after Nkrumah’s overthrow that Ghana’s assets were handed over to foreign companies. Between the third and fourth republic alone, over hundred state assets have been disposed, all in the name of ‘privatization’. Isn’t it shameful that Ghana’s gold and diamond are all foreign-owned? In spite of this, our economic woes are still not over. The gradual collapse of the textile, poultry and rice industries has seen more than 1,000,000 employees lose their jobs. Yet, we spend millions of dollars every year importing rice; creating jobs for other countries. The recent collapse of the Ghana Airways, Ghana Telecom and other state institutions has seen more than 200,000 Ghanaians lose their jobs. As a result, mass unemployment, prostitution, the rise in armed robbery, internet fraud (Sakawa), has become the order of the day. Ghanaians who ought to be proud, with the determination to serve mother Ghana and lead Africa, have rather become the most frustrated people on the continent. Many Ghanaians were therefore forced to leave the country for so-called ‘greener pastures’ in Libya, South Africa, Dubai, Europe and America. Just visit the US and British embassies every morning and you will see the queues for yourself.

Why The Need For a Policy Shift?
Nkrumah held that, “The basis of colonialism is economic, but the solution of the colonial problem lies in political action”. In his book “Towards Colonial freedom”, Nkrumah states the following:
“It is the aim of colonial governments to treat their colonies as producers of raw materials, and at the same time as the dumping-ground of the manufactured goods of foreign industrialists.”
On the political front, Nkrumah states:
“The essence of neo-colonialism is that the State which is subject to it is, in theory, independent and has all the trappings of international sovereignty. However, in reality its economic system and thus its political policy is directed from outside.” (from the introduction, “Neo-Colonialism”)
Therefore in his letter to President Obama upon his arrival in Ghana, Prof Agyeman Badu Akosa did not mince the following words:
“Evidence also shows how the World Bank and International Monetary Fund provided the advice and Technical Aid that halted and reversed work by the Nkrumah Government that was to bring relief and benefit to ordinary Ghanaians. Many have died through the resulting poverty and Ghana has not progressed much since that time”.
Many Pan-Africanists, African scholars, have repeatedly warned against the danger of Africa’s over-reliance on the IMF & the World Bank as the sole institutions that hold the keys to Africa’s economic woes. For many years, countries in Europe including Greece, Spain and Portugal have continuously followed the IMF’s economic directives. Yet, what has been the result?

Meanwhile David M. Walker, the former Comptroller General of the United States (1999-2008), (the man in charge of auditing the books of the US government) has said several times this year that the US is now exactly where Greece was two years ago (2010) in terms of its debt crises. Africans cannot continue to count on the West for aid. Ghana should make the efforts and take her destiny into her own hands.  The West has spent over $1 trillion on ‘aid’ to Africa over the past five decades.   However, according to a Zambian scholar and former Goldman Sachs banker Dambisa Moyo, author of the book 'Dead Aid', “No nation has ever attained economic development by aid." 

After 50 years of following advice from the IMF, are we better off as a people? Today, Nkrumah is weeping in his grave, as he reminds Africans of his message, written down for our generation and the ones to come:
 “To allow a foreign country, especially one which is loaded with economic interests in our continent, to tell us what political courses to follow, is indeed for us to hand back our independence to the oppressor on a silver platter.” (Kwame Nkrumah, “Consciencism” pg.102).
The Way Forward
Too much time has been wasted. Nevertheless this is not time for blame games. It is time for certain bold and necessary steps to be taken today, for the benefit of the next generation.
  1.     First, there is the need for a “National Development Policy”. To do this, all the various political parties must come together. The current polarisation between the political parties in Ghana must cease. Let us put the national interest of mother Ghana above that of any political grouping. The political parties, led by the government of the day, must together set up a body of local experts drawn from all the professional institutions in the country: engineers, architects, real estate developers, economists, businessmen and women, local experts from the various universities etc. This committee must be tasked to develop a national development policy program for a certain time frame, say 15 years. By so doing, it doesn’t really matter which political party is in power, the government of the day will always have an agenda to fulfil. Nkrumah’s government had First and Second Five-Year Development Plans which were successfully implemented. Unfortunately, the Seven Year Development Plans which had been launched on 11th March 1964 did not see the light of the day. Thanks to the CIA and their puppet NLC.    
  2.     Second, the government must believe in the capabilities of the Ghanaian people. Where a clear business opportunity arises in the country like the recent STX deal, the government should offer the Ghanaian entrepreneurs the opportunity to tap into these opportunities. Even in situations where our local expertise is limited, a certain percentage of such contracts must be awarded to the local industries to enable them compete and grow. If this is done it won’t be long, we’ll be able to handle everything all by ourselves in the near future.
  3.     Ghanaian inventors have been begging us as a nation-state to listen to their lonely shrill cries but we have always treated them with mockery. Onua Amoah was frustrated for lack of serious attention for his bio gas project. Many Ghanaian graduates as part of their various courses in the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology and the polytechnics have successfully, made some inventions and demonstrated their ability to re-engineer some products. All these works are well-documented. Others in Kumasi Suame Magazine, and in Accra, especially Apostle Dr Kwadwo Safo Kantanka have tried their best. It is time for the government to support such people with real annual financial commitments to enable them expand their works. This is just the beginning of many more wonders to come from such people. I bet you, if these men could count on the government to support them regularly, very soon Ghana could capture the West African market.
  4.     The concept of Domestication as proposed by Mr Dan Lartey must be accepted as the best way to solve the food shortage crises in the country. This concept, if well nurtured will enable us adequately feed ourselves and wean ourselves of any foreign aid.
  5.      Finally, Copies of all books written by Nkrumah especially Neo-Colonialism” must be supplied in large quantities to all secondary schools, the tertiary institutions and the reading of such books may form part of their continuous assessments especially the secondary schools. Kwame Nkrumah spent his entire life, studying about Africa’s political and economic challenges. He also discovered and wrote down the best approach that must be followed to address these challenges. Yet these books have been hidden from the Black man for decades! Throughout my 10years studies in Ghana, I never came across even a single copy of books “written by Nkrumah” in our libraries. Yet, every year the people of Ghana, most of them students celebrate Nkrumah’s birthday as a national holiday. Mr, President, Ghana needs millions of Kwame Nkrumah today, to take us through the next stage of our economic independence. But the only way to produce millions of Nkrumah is when the youth study and understand what he himself has written down; not what others have written about him. The knowledge as set out by Nkrumah is vital for the future of Ghana just as it was in the post-colonial era.

These measures are very necessary, if our dreams and aspirations for Ghana and Africa in the next 45 years are to be met.
Mr President, in your recent trip to Canada (2011) you advised African leaders to be bold and fight against their dependency on aid. It is my hope that this bold statement will be followed by immediate action. Ghana must show her determination to lead the continent as Africa’s shining Star. The history books must always place Ghana where she truly belongs, especially in the near future.
Long live Ghana, Long live Africa,
Long Live Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah.

Cc: Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament.
The High Commissioner, Ghana High Commission, UK.
Mathaba News Network
The Ghana News Agency.

The Editor, Graphic Communication Group.


1)   Dambisa Moyo (2009) “Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There is a Better Way for Africa”. Farrar, Straus & Giroux: New York.
2)   Kwame Nkrumah (1964) “Consciencism”. Panaf Books: London
3)   Kwame Nkrumah (1973) “The Struggle Continues”. Panaf Books: London
4)   Kwame Nkrumah (1945) “Towards Colonial Freedom”. Panaf Books: London
5)   Kwame Nkrumah (1965) “Neo-Colonialism: The Last Stage of Imperialism”. Panaf Books: London

Honourable Dr Saka
The author is a regular writer and a political analyst on African affairs, and a well-known social commentator in Africa. He is the editor of “The Doctor’s Report”, your most reliable source of critical analysis on African affairs. Please visit his blog at:  He is a strong Pan-Africanist, a youth activist and the founder of the “Leaders of Tomorrow”, a transformational and inspirational group of possible future leaders. He can be reached on Email: