Mr. President, Make Ecowas A Home

By Frank Meke.

In the last few weeks, I have taken time to watch and review President Bola Ahmed Tinubu thoughts on Ecowas and the Africa Union.

His speech reminded us to hold strong to African unity and not to allow second slavery of the rich continent by foreign entities and interests, a timely warning that resonates with me.

I, however, have my fears. I doubt if the West Coast leaders of which he is the new head driver are in the same vehicle of thoughts with him. If the Ecowas leaders tolerated him because he’s the big brother, rich, generous, and caregiver, his contemporaries, on the continent of Africa, merely nodded and applauded his revolutionary message just to make him happy and heard.

I hate and detest African diplomacy. It is slavish and deceptive and mocks our strength and culture. It’s euro centric in soul and blood, yet pretentious to our blackness, our roots and unity.

As Africans, we live in villages and in communities where the next person is family. We share our farm produce with the weak and offer, helping hands to till the ground.

We sit at the village square to share our thoughts and offer hope to our children. We don’t erect walls against our neighbours, and neither do we endanger their lives . We stand for what is good for all and open doors to help build a prosperous environment.

We are quick to rejoice with others and will publicly reprimand strange characters in our midst. We trade to protect our identity and promote resilience and trust.

We are proud people, quick to dress in our best traditional fashion style, sensitive to our heritage and history . Our women, mothers, and female children glow in the best of culturial finishings.

They don’t show hidden calves, and their language of communication was soothing and not toxic.

And until the strange cultural evangelists came. They first chose to change our local fabrics to their measured wears, then changed our African names to strange bearings, created new borders, and tolled them.

They made us speak in strange tongues, some of us in Spanish, French, and English, and some in Arabic. Africa became the Tower of Babel.

Our farmlands became the blood posts of our people. , our borders, the cemetery of our people, and our rivers renamed by scavenging colonialists who forcefully exported our natural resources, including human cargo through our waters.

President Tinubu, as the new leader of Ecowas, must go beyond diplomatic niceties, break down the old colonial barriers, and uproot the entrenched interests and fears about who we truly are.

I had been in a conference organised by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation in Spain for Ecowas region, and language became a barrier. Theiir decades of programmed French and English language division in us nearly marred the workshop.

Our masters were glad and watched us tear down our integrity, defending the impact of colonial segregation.

Thank God for the African brotherhood, and we resolved to appoint interpretaters from among us , only to discover later that our facilitators could speak both English and French.

Ecowas under our president must eliminate lots of unknown and unwritten barriers. Our trade posts must bear a unitary custom rubber stamp on goods and persons, allowing free access.

We must culturise our governance ecosystem and must avoid the rash to profile our people negatively. Why must the white persons find it easy to live and dominate the economic biosphere of Namibia, and a Ghanaian will be tolerated with a mere one week visa.

Why should we give our chieftaincy title to a white man, with choice estate to the bargain, but would be quick to run a tribal negative commentary on our brothers. We are quick to visit Europe, but considers Obudu and Gembu not good enough.

How can a flight out of lagos be more expensive than the flight from cotonou? How can American Dollar determine the price of fuel in our rich Nigeria?

How long shall we live in denial of our greatness as a people, nation, and continent?

Is Intra African tourism a big joke,so also the trade regime? President Bola Ahmed Tinubu knew that our new slave merchants won’t let us work our solution. Africa can not unite because our leaders are defenders and the stooges of the ever transformative balkanization of our communities and continent.

There’s no African leader willing to sign off a free trade regime in his territory. We are afraid of ourselves and will only drink tea and clap in appreciation of well written inspiring speeches such as delivered by our president, just to merely play along.

Is Africa too rich to be left in the hands of Africans?. Our cultural tourism diversity and identity are too powerful to be allowed to unite us?. While our culture tells our heritage and history, the enemies within are quick to use Discovery Channel TV to tell
Xenophobic history about us.

And until we admit that we are the same people,
from the same village and same blood, Africa, west , east, south, or north, will just remain a geopolitical entity , a destination for cheap labour and dumping ground for sub-standard goods..

When mummar Gaddafi muted free trade and political regime for Africa, we knew how his dream was cut short and Libya buffeted today on all sides.

The merchants are here, and it will take more than podium political sophistry to dislodge them. And if our brand new Ecowas leader means business, let Nigeria unite in truth and spirit and see the walls separating us from our brothers crumble like walls of Jericho.

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