A lot has been said and written in the past years about Africans and Africa. Most times, it is either that African people had failed to develop from the primitive to the less primitive: or they had reached a point of helplessness at which, if left to themselves, they would never do any better. Recalling the European’s imagination of great schedule of hierarchical progress from savagery to civilization, with Europe at the peak and zenith of the line; where Africans were simply not in the race or perhaps they had once set out, though this was more than doubtful if so, they had long since stopped running, exactly why was not known. But the reason, whatever it might be, was generally agreed to lie in some fatal deficiency of their nature. What wild speculation?
The so-called experts and most schools of thought that propounded these theories and promoted them during those colonial eras in their ploy to exploit these naive Africans have reigned and expired. We are now generally a long way from such views. But these old views about Africa are worth recalling for many reasons; if only for their perfectly dramatic contrast with those of modern science or yet even when they have vanished from serious discussion, they still retain a kind of underground existence. The stercoraceous sediment of these weird speculations has settled like a layer of dust and ashes on the minds of large numbers of otherwise thoughtful people and is constantly being swirled about.
The most painful part of the matter is the subconscious willful acceptance of this fate by Africans themselves. What this leads to, despite all factual evidence to the contrary, are endless suspicions written and broadcasted by most western media of the ‘natural and inherent inferiority ‘of Africans; that in the African world, we are in the presence of a being differing profoundly not merely from the white man but also from [other] human types’; or that ‘Africans…….has contributed virtually nothing to the civilization of the world or no African had made achievement worthy to be noted or emulated.
However, scientifically mistaken, these notions apparently remain part of our culture. This problem thus had deeply affected our African people in different ways. Most often, we tend to appreciate and worship the achievements of other races and treat with contempt and condescension our African men and women who have equally in their capacity as Africans have achieved equal fame of counterpart degrees.
Now is the time for every African man to forget and cast behind him his hero worship and adoration of other races, and to start out immediately creating and emulating heroes of his own race. Now is the time for Africans to canonize their own martyrs and elevate them to positions of fame and honour African men and women who have made their distinct contributions to our African history before and after the colonization of Africa. Julius Nyerere is worthy of sainthood alongside Kwame Nkrumah, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Jomo Kenyatta, Albert John Lutuli, Chike Obi, Tafawa balewa and Ken Saro-wiwa etc. They are all entitled to the halo of martyrdom and sainthood with no less glory than that of the martyrs or saints of any other race. Nelson Mandela, Philiph Emegwali, Wole Soyinka, Mohamed El Baradei, Kofi Annan, Ahmed H. Zewail, Naguib Mahfouz, Wangari Maathai, Anwar Sadat, Desmond Tutu, Max Theiler, Allan M. Cormack, Nadine Gordimer, Sydney Brenner, F.W. de Klerk, J. M. Coetzee, John Kufuor, Emeka Anyaoku, Margaret Ekpo, and Jakaya Kikwete’s brilliancy as educators, politicians, peacemaker, scientists and statesmen entitled them to the highest place as heroes among men.
In recent years, Africa has produced countless numbers of men and women, in war and in peace, whose lustre and bravery outshines that of any other people. Then why not see good and perfection in ourselves? As we condemn without reservation bad things happening in Africa today. We must equally inspire literature and promulgate a doctrine of our own without any apologies and be proud to speak about our heroes and heroine. The right is Africa’s. Let contrary sentiments and cross opinions go to the winds.
Consistent negative reporting of mainstream media and the failure of our own politicians recently is just a weapon of the enemy to defeat the hopes of emerging and young energetic African statesmen and we must say no to this ideology and practice. The time has come when we need to speak for ourselves and create our own reporting that serves us right. We are entitled to our own opinions and not obligated to or bound by the opinions of others.
As an African, do not think that you are inferior. Race is just an idea. It has been proven that it does not exist. If others laugh at you return the laughter to them; if they mimic you return the compliment with equal force. They have no more right to dishonour, disrespect or disregard your feelings and manhood than you have in dealing with them. Honour them when they honour you; ignore them when they vilely treat you. But do this without violence as Martin Luther our great African hero taught us during their civil right campaign in the 1960s.
Remember that such people who mistreat you or see you as subhuman are suffering from some kind of complex and their arrogance is but skin deep and an assumption that has no foundation in morals or in Law. You must remember that we are not aliens in this world. Every other race has sprung from the same family tree of obscurity as we have; their history is as rude in its primitiveness as ours, their ancestors ran wild and naked, lived in caves and in branches of trees like monkeys as ours; they made sacrifices, ate the flesh of their own dead and the raw meat of wild beasts for centuries even as they accuse us of doing. Their cannibalism was more prolonged than ours; when we were embracing the Arts and Sciences on the banks of the Nile, their ancestors were still drinking human blood and eating out of the skulls of their conquered dead.
When our civilization had reached the noon-day of progress, they were still running naked and sleeping in holes and caves with rats, bats, and other insects and animals. After we had already unfathomed the mystery of the Stars and reduced the Heavenly Constellations to the minute and regular calculus they were still backwoodsmen, living in ignorance and blatant darkness.
The world today is indebted to us for the benefits of civilization. They stole our arts and sciences from Africa. Then why should we be ashamed of ourselves? Their modern improvements are but duplicates of a grander civilization that we reflected thousands of years ago; without the advantage of what is buried and still hidden, to be resurrected and reintroduced by the intelligence of our generation and our posterity. Why should we be discouraged because somebody laughs at us today? Who can tell what tomorrow will bring forth? Did they not laugh at Moses, Christ, and Mohammed? Was there not a Carthage, Greece and Rome? We see and have changed every day; so plan, work, be steadfast and do not be dismayed. Appreciate anything made in your country. Even as our recent politicians and lawmakers are toeing the path of destruction, corruption and insincerity. Do not despair. As the Jew is held together by his religion, the white races by the assumption and the unwritten law of superiority, and the Mongolian by the precious tie of blood; so likewise the African man and woman must be united in one grand African Jingoism. Our union must know no climate, boundary, religion or nationality.
African men and women the world over must practice one faith, that of confidence in themselves, with one cause, one goal, and one destiny. We must create and write our own history. We must promote any creativity or achievement of African people with no equivocation. Let no religious break us, no tribal and ethno-lingual relativity sever our bond, no political machination divide us, but let us hold together under all climates and in every country; making among ourselves Great African upon which, “The Sun shall never set.” Let no voice but your own speak to you from the depths; let no influence but your own rouse you in time of peace and time of war. Hear all but attend only to that which concerns you, your allegiance shall be to your people, then to your family and your Country.
Remember always that the Jew in his political and economic urge is always first a Jew, the white is first a white man under all circumstances, and you can do no less than being first and always an African man; then all else will take care of itself. Let no one inoculate you with evil doctrines to suit their conveniences. Be the light to your community. “Charity begins at home.” First, to thyself be true and thou canst not then be false to any man.
Nature first made us what we are and then out of our own creative genius we make ourselves what we want to be. Follow always that great law. Let the sky be your limit, and Eternity our Measurement. There’s no height to which we cannot climb by using the active intelligence of our own minds. The mind creates, and as much as we desire in nature, we must utilize our minds once more and be as creative as we have shown in the past. you shall treat others only as they treat you, but in your homes and everywhere possible you must teach the higher development of science to your children; and be sure to develop a chain of scientists par excellence, for in science and nationalism lie our only hope to withstand the evil designs of modern materialism. Fight your way if you can to go to school. If you have the opportunity to go to school, do not hesitate to seize it. Education must be our key weapon to wage a war of corruption; tribal wars, and inferiority complexes in the African nation. We liberate and emancipate ourselves from mental and racial slavery with the power of knowledge.
Never forget your cause. Remember! We live, work and plan for the establishment of a great and binding giant of a new African stable state; the founding of an African empire whose only natural, spiritual and political limits shall be: liberty for Africans, at home and abroad.