This is one of the most powerful statements I've ever read!
naiwu osahon the convenor and principal sponsor from 1982, of the 7th pan african congress of the pan african movement.
To quote the famous historian and a leader of the Pan African Movement, Prof. John Henrik Clarke, "When Africans were surrounded by Africa, they walked on it, bathed in it, ate from it and were not conscious of it. All of a sudden, now as slaves, having lost Africa, they began to be conscious of it. On the boat were Ibos, Urhobos, Ashanties, different people from different parts of Africa, speaking different languages and had different customs, but the Africans realised they were all Africans, and were on the same boat with the same predicament, and suffering the same tragedy."
The Pan African Movement came about as a reaction to racism and colonialism and these twin evils have not subsided, rather they have become more debilitating, reinforced with neo-colonialism.
So far, Pan Africanism has reacted more seriously against White imperialism than the Arab variance that pioneered the Black slavery holocaust and has continued since, becoming even more virulent now under the cloak of subtle religious platitudes.
The OAU as a geographical compromise helped to diffuse the issue and blind Black Africa to the plight of their kith and kin racially marginalised and suffering severely in Northern Africa. With their membership of the OAU, the Arabs were allowed to attend the 6th Pan African Congress in Tanzania in 1974, which they promptly disrupted by insisting that Africans do not need a global institution or league. To press their advantage home, they forced the congress to adopt Arabic as an official language.
In fact, OAU Abuja conference of 1992 would not have been able to pass its landmark 'Reparations' resolution if any Arab Head of State from Northern Africa had been in attendance. Even so, the OAU resolution deliberately avoided mentioning Arab culpability and liability in the African slavery holocaust.
So it is obvious that Arabs are not Pan Africanists. Quoting Prof. Clarke again: "Arabs always act as though they are not in Africa. Once when I was visiting Egypt, I told my Egyptian Arab host to get a cab ready for the next morning that I was going to Kenya. So you are going to Africa to visit your people? We got no diseases here, why are you leaving us, the host asked?"
"The Arab in Africa will always be an Arab. They never were Africans and never would be. The Arab commitment has never been to Africa and will never be. This is the first self liberating truism every Pan Africanist must learn before they can seriously liberate Africa from all comers Africa is sandwiched between the Arabs in the North and the Whites in the South. Africa must fight her way through and win. All of Africa must come under African control. There are no two ways about this. No second guessing and no apologies. We must take control from Cape to Cairo."
This has been the principal philosophy behind the new spirit of Pan Africanism which we have been promoting in the Black world