This Is Africa

In my travels to Africa, both for business and charity, I am always amazed at the happy demeanour of most Africans. 

Aside from living in abject poverty, many are subject to brutal abuses both mental and physical. The world’s NGOs assist in supporting and helping the victims of such crimes recover or at least maintain. 

Africa always tugs at my heart and that of many of my colleagues. But if us  ask why, most of us cannot put a finger on it. Most of the countries are run by corrupt dictators who live a lavish lifestyle while the population suffers. Some countries function in a somewhat orderly manner, but are only one election away from a significant change. 

With all of the current headline news in regard to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), I find it difficult to watch as neighbouring politicians stand by and criticize the current regime.

What is happening in the DRC is sad and tough to witness. It is plagued with Ebola and violence. Its biggest plague is, however, probably its vast mineral deposits, which make the DRC one of the most potentially wealthy countries on the planet despite the fact it ranks at the bottom 10 poorest country. 

What irks me is the criticism levelled at the current regime, which appears to be nothing more than a game of politics to find an excuse to march in and bring stability from a military stand point while simultaneously removing the citizens minerals.

Such criticism is futile and opaque. Paul Kagame of Rwanda is one such leader who denounces the leadership in DRC yet gained control of Rwanda through a brutal war where his militia slaughtered many thousands of people prior to him changing the countries constitution a few times in order for him to maintain power.

He then expelled many of the Hutus he was fighting to the DRC and now complains that DRC does not maintain a secure border. 

If any of us has the right to criticize the leadership of a country in regard to the clinical execution of a western style election we had better do some close examinations of our own systems first.

It seems that many western elections and referendums have not been as transparent and honest as we may have assumed many years ago.

While lives may have not have been lost, the results were at best (it would appear) manufactured in our clinically western way.

Just saying! 


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About the Author

Mark has been an entrepreneur for over forty years. His experience spans many commercial sectors and aspects of business. He was one of the youngest people to be appointed as a Fellow of the prestigious Institute of Sales and Marketing Management before he left the UK in 1988.

His column focuses on ways we can improve on success in our lives. Whether it is business, relationships, or health, Mark has a well-rounded perspective on how to stay focused for growth and development.

His influences come from the various travels he undertakes as an adventurer, philanthropist and keynote speaker. More information can be found on Mark at his website www.markjenningsbates.com

He is a Venture Partner with www.DutchOracle.com a global Alternative Investment company.

Mark Jennings-Bates:
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Photo credit: www.SteveAustin.ca 

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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