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“Africans are capable of looking after themselves.”

 

“Africans are capable of looking after themselves,” says AU ambassador to US Arikana Chihombori-Quao

Vienna (27.07.2017) – While criticism from Italy continued since last week’s program the Mayor of Lampedusa Salvatore Martello directly compared Austria’s Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) with neo-Nazis. Kurz who insisted that it was the island’s duty to prevent “illegal” refugees and migrants to enter the mainland “clashed” with Lampedusa’s rationality and solution orientated encouragement that also has a tradition. We remember Giuseppina Nicolini, the former Mayor of Lampedusa, who experienced some of the worst European catastrophes since the Second World War, forcefully demanded from European countries to change their trading behaviors and policies within Africa otherwise this human catastrophe will not end. But people do not change … and while Nicolini as well as SOS Méditerranée, one of the organizations that were accused of cooperating with human traffickers by Austrian Ministers Kurz and Sobotka last week had received an UNESCO-Peace Price her successor Salvatore Martello verbally attacks ignorant Europeans by now. Pointing to Minister Kurz Martello told the Italian news agency ANSA: “I would have expected such a statement from a neo-Nazi, not from a representative of an EU country. Obviously, he does not know how big Lampedusa is. He forgets that the island is inhabited by 6,000 people who feel as Europeans. I understand that Kurz does not know how landings of refugee ships are taking place and how migrants are treated who arrive at Lampedusa. He does not know what this island and its inhabitants have provided for the migrants.“ Ignorance, accusations and unrealistic claims are common practice in pre-election times but then a tweet by the Chairman of the Social Democratic Party in the EU Parliament, Gianni Pittella, circulated the global news in which he wrote: „Kurz wants to transform Lampedusa into a concentration camp for migrants.

This is not the Europe that we are working on”; that reinforced the contrasting differences. Obviously underneath these apparent opposites to deal with the situation, lies a decent misunderstanding in the weapons of choice or the choice of weapons. We are not in the Middle Ages after all, we are writing the year 2017! Must these conditions really remain?
Change seems to come this time from Africa. In an interview on Aljazeera AU ambassador to United States Arikana Chihombori-Quao said she sees Donald Trump’s budget cuts on aid money for Africa as a chance “Africans are capable of looking after themselves.” Chihombori-Quao who describes herself as the new face and a major representative of Africa believes that “The problems affecting Africa today have been in the making for centuries. The legacy of colonialism is alive and well. Rules, laws and treaties enacted long before independence still exist today.” Two of the concrete measures that the AU-leaders agreed on are the implementation of new African borders and the launch of a new African passport. “The manner in which these borders were created were to divide tribes. We are relaxing the borders that are not ours. We want our original continent back”, Chihombori-Quao explained.

 

Dr.Di-Tutu Bukasa, Sintayehu Tsehay, Gilbert Moyen, Madge Gill Bukasa

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