Discussion in 'All Things Africa' started by panafrica, May 18, 2006.
Here are some opinions expressed on the subject
I feel the fresh wave of nationalisation in Latin America follows the realisation that it is only through a country's self determination and initiative both at leadership and general citizenry level that it can eradicate poverty. Unless African leaders understand this simple fact, we will remain engulfed by poverty for many years to come...waiting for aid and outside help when we are sitting on precious resources. Yes, this path can prove difficult but it has led to the development of countries in the tiger economies of the east, Europe and the US. We have the resources, let us stop working for the resources and have the resources work for us!
Temwa Gondwe, Lilongwe, Malawi
Latin American leaders are taking their peoples out of misery. I think all Africa's leaders who have no ideas need to learn from Latin American leaders. Castro has improved the health of his people in Cuba, Chavez has improved literacy rates in Venezuela, and the greedy leaders of Africa have simply run short of ideas.
Ngwasi Chibikom, Bamenda, Cameroon
In Africa we simply do not have leaders of substance, but have the tin pot dictators who rely on printing money to pay the army and police to support them. Looking East, or west or north or south will not make much difference to us till we learn to be politically mature as nations.
Benson Magaba, Harare, Zimbabwe
In many ways I believe that Africa must follow Latin America, in the sense that it must develop its own industries and be able to manage its own resources as many Latin American countries do. However, the current far-left movement is based on xenophobia and short term economic growth (pumping oil). Sound economic policies and transparency is what Africa needs
Brandon, Seattle, USA
Having spent most of my life living and working in various parts of Africa, I think the Latin America model would not help Africa. History shows most African regimes have been corrupt and nationalising minerals and industry will only make the ruling elite richer and the poor deserving masses in even more poverty. Africa is a unique continent with unique problems and therefore needs a unique approach and solution to its problems.
David Arundel, Coventry, UK
Africa should be very careful about following the Latin American way
Trevor Simumba, Lusaka, Zambia
Africa should be very careful about following the Latin American way. Firstly, most of those leaders are dictators following far left wing politics and economics that will further impoverish the common man. If we have to have an example, lets look at the pragmatism and wisdom of the Brazilian model not the stone age policies of Chavez and his cohorts. Do you really think there is a difference between Chavez and people like Omar Bongo of Gabon? Africa must stop kidding itself. The way out of poverty is to focus on investment in social and economic infrastructure in collaboration with the private sector.
Trevor Simumba, Lusaka, Zambia
One important distinction between the two regions is the level of grassroots participation in the political process. A valuable lesson for us to learn from South American countries is the importance of adult literacy and adult education which empowers people to oppose the corruption of local and national leaders. As long as our leaders can keep us week and divided, they can control us and steal from us.
Tim Casteling, Taichung, Taiwan
Africa is going through the growing pains of infant development, Latin America is a teenager in full swing.
Johanna Schermuly, UK
As a Brazilian who has lived 28 years in Zimbabwe (at present in the UK), I must say that there are many similarities between the two continents. But when it comes to politics, Africa still has to learn a lot about democracy, free speech and respect for human rights, put an end to her ethnic conflicts. Their colonial histories are interlinked, but in Latin America they don't seem to despise their older colonial heritage anymore as much as Africa. Africa is going through the growing pains of infant development, Latin America is a teenager in full swing. Despite all the problems, the future lies in these two continents. They are the future developed worlds.
Johanna Schermuly, Shepton Mallet, UK
Africa should not have anything serious to do with Latin America, because the same "cancer" -- the quest for oil -- which is eating deep in Africa is also causing havoc in Latin America.
Amadi Rapheal, Abuja, Nigeria
The very first time I read Gabriel Garcia Marquez, I was struck by the thought: "This is us!"
Michael Prytz, Johannesburg,
The very first time I read the Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez, I was struck by the thought: "This is us!" I recognise our story in his stories: the heat, the vibrancy, the volatile politics, the complex ethnic mix, the vast gap between rich and poor, the colonial past, life in a nation whose eye is always half-turned towards Europe and How Things Are Done There... I think that there is much that we can learn from each other, and enormous opportunity for trade. In my opinion, the biggest obstacles are the language barrier, and our economies' traditional South-North orientation.
Michael Prytz, Johannesburg, South Africa
I believe Latin America might be a closer friend to Africa. Latin Americans has decided to clean up their act and work together first before they seek out relationships with the world. The newfound friendship with Chavez and his allies proves this to be fact. Most of all, Africa needs to work together, and make our continent a better world before we decide to make relations with anyone.
Yared Negussie, Sacrament, U.S.A
Even though the actions taken by the leaders of both Venezuela and Bolivia may seem a genuine act of good intentions towards their nations and people, they've been showing aspects of "over-nationalism" and of the so-called "anti-imperialism" as well. I believe the Brazilian model, which respects international rules and copes with the capitalism, seems much more trustworthy than Venezuelan and Bolivian projects. Their actions may look straightforward to people in Europe, but for us Latin- Americans, they are nothing but fishy.
Leandro Lopes Gomes, São Paulo, Brazil
African leaders are too greedy to control 100% of their countries' resources. They can't learn from Latin America because they love their colonial masters too much!!
Mompati K K, Gaborone, Botswana
If African countries could follow suit, the rewards could potentially be very great.
William Waites, Johannesburg
In Latin America we are recently seeing substantial reforms that are, in particular, reducing poverty and ameliorating education, and these reforms are having tangible effects. The progressive countries in Latin America have also formed a collective bargaining block that has been quite effective in slowing the transfer of wealth from Latin America to rich countries in North America and Europe. If African countries could follow suit, the rewards could potentially be very great.
William Waites, Johannesburg, South Africa
Most of Latin America has spent years experimenting with economic models which Africa seems to doing as well. However, modernisation paradigms in Latin America have not redressed disparities. Africa must consider the fact that most Latin American countries gained their independence in the 19th century and still struggle with development challenges, largely poverty and high income gap.
Ezana Habte-Gabr, Colombia
The two continents are rich in natural resources and learning from each other is great but Africans have to unite more, be one and by this they will trust and work together and build their continent.
It's possible for African leaders to learn from the Latin Americans. Some leaders in Africa are plagued by inferiority complex, quick to swallow what the western leaders dish out. Leaders like Chavez on the other hand have the courage and backbone to stand up to them and fight for what they believe in.
Dee Okang, Ghanaian in NYC
The two continents are too different for the simple reason that the elites in both continents are miles apart in patriotism. While the elite in South America will be patriotic enough to invest returns from oil in social projects, the African elite will squander oil resources in ostentatious living and siphon the remainder to secret accounts abroad. Meanwhile their compatriots die of avoidable hunger, squalor and disease.
John D, Enugu, Nigeria.
Africa has scarcely learned from the experiences of the first independent states in Africa, so how can we expect the continent as a whole to learn from the experiences of another continent?
Helen Tewolde, Toronto
Latin American countries have about one and a half centuries more experience in independent statehood and they have gone through many phases. Although there have been many setbacks, the people have the national and collective Latin American experience and history to look back and learn from their own mistakes. For Africa it would be ideal to learn from the experiences of Latin America but realistically newly independent nations in Africa have scarcely learned from the experiences of some of the first independent states in Africa. So how can we expect the continent as a whole to learn from the experiences of another continent and apply them? I think one of the major differences is the level of civic engagement in the political arena in Latin America and particularly when it comes to mass mobilization.
Helen Tewolde, Toronto
Africa and Latin America share a common colonial history. Both exploited, they share genetic and cultural traits. Africa should not only emulate the Latin Americans, we should trade and bind with them in a political, as well as socio-economic sense. Africa must realize that his current partner was once the slaver. And once a slaver, always a slaver.
Dr. Manson Sesay, Riverdale, USA
Despite a wide array of cultures, working people in South America are uniting in struggle against poverty and exploitation. This is not simply a model for the working people of Africa, it's a model for workers all over the world.
Matt Parker, Dallas, Texas. United States
Paraguayans that I've worked with have expressed feelings of powerlessness in the face of rampant corruption within and around their country. They tend to see Morales and Chavez as common-man leaders who actively combat corruption from multinational companies.
Jeremy Derickson, Phoenix, USA
I can't say how much Africa can learn/follow L.A's lead on this issue. Though both have a sort of commen history. the dynamics at play are different.
I think that we all can learn from each others mistakes. but each nation has so many problems to deal with first.
having responcible leaders is the first step for all nation to prosper. The US is a very important example of this. The clown in office has nearly distroid all it's creadevility.
I think Africa should look up to Africa.
Libya and Venezuela will offer oil and free medical aid to African countries:
What's the difference in Africa/Blacks looking for latin American support, and Blacks looking for non-Black support in America? I'm becoming confused. Both of these cultures/races are not fond of Black. Just because there are a few scattered Blacks in Latin America doesn't mean they have our best interest at heart.
I agree, a handout is a handout, whether the extended hand is Brown or white.
Let me clear things up for you. The article is calling for Africans to follow an example, not to build a coalition. That is the difference.
We went from building pyramids, and constructing civilizations; to needing to follow others' examples?:sand:
Well, I guess the rebirth needs to go underway somehow
Greetings Panafrica. I dont think Africans should learn from Latin America. This is what Africans should do:
What we should learn is African American history for the past 400 years, and African colonial history, to understand who we are dealing with. Their economic and political strategies and how it impacts us economically and politically. How the common wealth of white people within America and in the Northern Hemisphere has impacted the economic and political well being of black people. And also, learn our bad habits. How we sold ourselves, so we dont repeat it in future.
Next, we should define a common wealth of black people and set a goal of what we want to achieve for ourselves and the future generations. We should then use our knowledge of the imperialists, to map out a strategy to achieve our goal. It wont be easy, and we will probably have to make concessions or else we will go into war with many of these nations. However, at the end we should attain true economic and political independence of our nation.
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