Africans Must Strive to Change Current Global Order

26 APR, 2021 - 00:04 

Ranga Mataire Writing Black for the Zimbabwe Herald

It would be a tragedy if the current generations of Africans depart this world without contributing something towards the radical transformation of the current maladjusted world order that favours those countries that once colonised us or campaigned for our continued subjugation.

Let’s take a step back and refresh our memory on something very worrisome that recently happened at the United Nations (UN).

A resolution for that called for concrete action for the elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance was recently tabled at the UN. More than 193 countries voted. 

Of the 193 countries that voted, 106 voted in favour of the resolution and 44 European countries abstained. Guess which countries voted NO? There were 14 and included Germany, UK, Australia, United States, Canada, Netherlands and France voted NO.

Their NO vote carried the day as some of the major European powers including the US are part of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), that have veto powers. 

This NO vote was not a major news item at any of the multinational news agencies and neither did it get any prominent space in any news outlet in Africa. This is not surprising because the West still controls what we consume as news.

This recent ominous occurrence at the UN informs us that far from being free and independent, countries in the South are still hamstrung by the power and influence of a few Western countries keen to maintain the current world order that privileges them.

This ominous occurrence also teaches us that far from being the paragons of democracy, freedom of expression, fair and just society and advocates for equality — the West is still stuck and wants to maintain an order that perpetually makes us hewers of wood and drawers of water.

I am aware that some Africans are quick to dismiss the need for a radical transformation of the current world order as a remote futile endeavour. This is precisely how the same powerful Western nations have made us to believe by creating confusion amongst ourselves in not seeing the bigger picture.

The advent of new information technology has made it worse for Africans who are daily saturated with information overload of all kinds, most of it useless and ephemeral. 

Even prominent academic griots that one expects to lead the way in illuminating hidden and devious acts meant to render us perpetual zombies, have also been bamboozled by this information overdose packed innocently as information and knowledge.

The race is now about who gets the more likes, who breaks the news, who gets more sympathy from Western embassies, who gets to be breastfed more from the same Western excretions that have fouled the world in Iraq, Yemen, Egypt, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia and Sudan?

We have become more confused by this information overdose that we are now confusing spending much time on social media platforms with acquiring deeper knowledge about issues. Some would argue that we must sort out our domestic matters first. I understand and appreciate this perspective, but it misses more fundamental and broader issues that affect a person in Tamandayi.

How is it that the same countries that constantly out other countries on human rights and freedom are the same countries that voted against a global call against racism and discrimination? 

What is it that they so brazenly want to protect? It’s simple, a call for global action against racism and discrimination is a call for a radical transformation of the current global order as we know it.

This is something supporters of local opposition that pander to Western interests need to know. There is barefaced hypocrisy we must constantly call out against.

I sincerely believe it is the duty of every African to strive in contributing in whatever way in changing the current world order that renders perpetual racial subordinates to the hegemonic white world.

We talk about achieving political independence, but we remain in chains in so far as the current economic order is concerned.

Head of Programme at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation at the University of Free State in South Africa, Professor Tim Murithi makes very interesting points on the current situation and what Africa or Africans need to do.

In a 2017 research paper titled: Africa and the Remaking of the Global Order, Prof Murithi argues that Africans need to address geopolitical insecurity as well as the continent’s historical exclusion from the design of the international system.

Professor Tim Murithi

Prof Murithi states that for African solidarity against exclusion to succeed we need an understanding of global order predicated on the notions of the maintenance of peace and security, with emphasis on the institution that has asserted its mandate to lead on this issue — the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

In his view, Africa and all progressive forces of the world need to interrogate the need for a geopolitical paradigm shift in terms of the existing order and call for the dismantling of the UNSC and the wider UN system because it has failed to address contemporary crisis.

“Furthermore, the nefarious activities of the Permanent Members of the UNSC, such as carpet bombing of Syria, have transformed this body into a net producer of instability, and it would be more appropriate to rebrand the institution as the “UN Insecurity Council”

Indeed, the current global order is to say the least at breaking point in its exclusion of people of the South. The UN system and the Security Council as evidence by the recent NO vote against racism and discrimination has failed. Some of the powerful members of the UNSC have demonstrated a propensity to utilise the UN as a prophylactic to achieve their nefarious ends.

The illegal Iraq invasion by the US and the UK was the clearest demonstration of this propensity to pervert international rule of law.

The US and the UK amassed a coalition of the coerced and mounted their invasion in direct contravention of the UN Charter, specifically Article 39 and its injunction against interstate aggression. The invasion of Iraq was a notable nail in the coffin of the UN Charter and a clear indication of the undemocratic character of the international system.

Our writing of these issues are not rooted in hate. We write these issues to show that we are not zombies. We write these issues very conscious of the unfinished business of the need to reform the UN. We write about these issues to rally Africans in realising that what unites us is much more fundamental and enduring than the domestic matters that divide us.

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