The Executive Director of the Africa Center for Security and Counter-Terrorism Mr. Emmanuel Kotin has lamented the deteriorating state of democracy in West Africa. He was speaking to your authoritative security news portal Africa Security Report on the sad development in Niger where disgruntled soldiers have taken up arms to overthrow the democratically elected government of Mohamed Bazoum.
He catalogs a series of problems the sub-region is saddled with and if not adequately checked could unleash and embolden disgruntled soldiers to follow the footsteps of those who have chosen similar actions. He called Africa Western partners to treat the continent with respect and as equal partners in the spirit of self-governance which underpins the soul and spirit of democracy. He also urges the Western partners not to see Africa as its resources pull and not to turn Africa into a proxy war with Russia.
He also called on African leaders to be generational in the decisions they make and look for local solutions to our problems. Here is a copy of the statement he released;
“The Sahel risks falling into the hands of couptists if the underlying conditions in the sub-region are not promptly and adequately tackled. We need to look at:
A concerted effort to restore law and order
A lack of credible elections,
Upholding the Constitution (which is the soul and spirit of every country)
Human rights, as guaranteed by the Constitution and
Stagnant economic and educational systems.
Our Western Allies must also show their commitment to seeing Africa develop and not adopt the colonial mindset of using Africa as a hub for its natural resource needs. Africa cannot and must not be the avenue for a proxy war between the West and Russia. The United Nations must call a spade a spade and call France to order over the colonial arrangement where the French still has a stranglehold on its former colonists. Is it not interesting that all these coups are happening in French-speaking countries?
As a continent, we cannot continue to do the same things and expect different results. Africa needs generational leaders, people-centered leaders, and leaders who believe in Africa and can look within for solutions to our endemic problems imposed upon us by the colonialists. The new order is about collaboration and African leaders must learn to stand up to their counterparts as equal partners as they negotiate programs, projects, and the transfer of technology for our mutual benefit.
The West should be interested in holding leaders within the sub-region accountable for the level of corruption, abuse of office, and sham elections the sub-region has experienced over the period.”