Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Africa's vampire elites

Every so often, an African comes along and tells us once again what we know so well about the many countries on that continent. Here is economist George Ayittey sounding the alarm for the umpteenth time. (See here and here.) In "Soiled African Continent Needs Purging," on the African Executive website, he writes:

Africa's creaky statist interventionist behemoth needs to be de-wormed, de-tribalized, and thoroughly cleansed. Bloated bureaucracies, packed with cronies and tribesmen, reek of graft, venality and inefficiency. The state sector or "government" has become the arena of self-enrichment. Everybody who wants to be rich heads straight into government. The richest people in Africa are heads of state and government ministers. Quite often, the chief bandit is the head of state himself.

These ruling vampire elites suck the economic life-blood out of the country to deposit in overseas accounts. Because they benefit enormously from the rotten status-quo, they are not interested in reform, PERIOD. If you exert pressure on them to reform, they would perform the "Babangida boogie" -- one step forward, three steps back, a flip and a side-kick to land on a fat Swiss bank account. Much ado about nothing. . . .

They care less about reliable supply of electricity, clean water and medical care for the people as long as they (the politicians) have access to them. When they need medical care, they go abroad. Their food is imported. They send their children abroad for education. As for the people, they can eat grass. . . .

The chicanery of these ruling vampire elites knows no bounds. As a result, the reform process across Africa has been stalled by strong-arm tactics, vaunted acrobatics, vexatious chicanery and willful deception. But without reform, more African countries will implode or remain stuck in the mud.

Okay, so now that we're informed again of the perfidy and greed of African elites, do you think there's a chance for a semblance of reform -- this year, next decade, or in a hundred years? Won't enlightened Africans, five decades from today, be writing the same critical commentaries as the indomitable George Ayittey?

No comments: