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African Caribbean Leaders want unity, end to ‘dependency syndrome” in Africa

Some African and Caribbean leaders have stressed the need for Africa to form a united force and end the continuous dependency on non-African countries/continents.

They spoke at the 3rd AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024) at Nassau, The Bahamas.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the 3rd Annual AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024), organised by the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), was incorporated into the Afreximbank Annual Meetings (AAM2024).

The events focused on the theme ‘Owning Our Destiny: Economic Prosperity on the Platform of Global Africa”.

The events were monitored by NAN.

Mahamadou Issoufou, a former President of Niger, during a plenary session at the ACTIF 2024, said:’Africa must do away with this dependency syndrome, which gets us thinking that the solutions to our problems are outside the continent.’

According to him, there is a need for Africa to trust itself and move away from dependency on external solutions.

Issoufou underscored th
e importance of creating value chains, industrialising the continent, and modernising agriculture to ensure that Africans could trade goods among themselves.

He also called for strengthening democratic institutions to mobilise internal resources and reforming the global financial architecture to make it more equitable.

A former Prime Minister of Jamaica, Hon. Percival Patterson, also asserted the need for self-reliance and unity among peoples of Africa and African descent.

Patterson said it was important for Africa to exercise true sovereign power over its resources, saying ‘Africa must decide that it is the seller who determines the price.’

‘ If we came here and we were fighting among ourselves, it would be headline news.

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‘We have come and we have renewed our pledge to work together as one”

He also highlighted the significance of cultural and academic exchanges between Africa and the Caribbean to develop mutual unde
rstanding and pride in shared heritage.

‘It is very important for us to develop that sense of knowledge, that sense of confidence, that sense of pride in ourselves.’

Hon. Isaac Cooper, Deputy Prime Minister of The Bahamas, harped on unity, resilience, and collaboration, emphasising the importance and potential for joint ventures.

‘You are family, our brothers and sisters, and we love you, but I think this is an incredible opportunity to do more business with you.

‘We no longer believe we have to play by the rules we did not create.

‘We were victims of history, but if we stand together, we have the power to change history by fostering connections that will see us stronger, more united than ever before”.

Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations, in a video address, called for stronger alliances.

‘The time is now to strengthen the African Caribbean Alliance and leverage strong historical ties, and reinforce the importance of inclusivity in building a prosperous future for all.

we plan ahead, let us ensure our efforts reach every corner of our continent, leaving no one behind, especially our women and youth.

‘Together, we can build a future of prosperity and dignity for all.’

Highlighting Afreximbank’s role as a catalyst for change and underscoring the critical role of Africa’s leadership, she noted the urgent need to transform the current global system to meet the needs of the Global South, particularly Africa.

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‘Let us unite to address these challenges and build a resilient, innovative, and prosperous Global Africa,’ she said.

Hon. Philip Davis, Prime Minister of The Bahamas, in his keynote address, highlighted the crucial role of unity and collaboration between Africa and the Caribbean.

Davis commended Prof. Benedict Oramah, President/Chairman, Board of Directors, Afreximbank, for his visionary leadership at the institution and called for a transformation of the global financial architecture.

‘This trans
formation will be aimed at creating a fair and inclusive system that recognises and respects the unique needs and potentials of African and Caribbean regions.’

President William Ruto of Kenya, in his video message, identified the diverse prospects and unique advantages of Africa.

Ruto called for a united approach to reforming global financial systems, suggesting that African central banks and governments dedicate 30 per cent of their national reserves to the development of Africa.

He said the collective action for a prosperous future was very important.

‘Our journey towards economic prosperity is deeply connected to our understanding and appreciation of our shared heritage and the collective strength of global Africa.

‘We must embody the spirit of vigilance and an unbending principle, not only driven by economic interests but by the profound ethical imperative to advocate for a more inclusive and thorough global financial system.’

Hailemariam Desalegn, a former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, highlighted th
e importance of understanding Africa’s history and transforming its political economy.

‘Our civilisation, the global civilisation, has begun in Africa. We can bring about the African Renaissance if we understand our history.’

According to Desalegn, recognising Africa’s role in global civilisation can inspire future generations.

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However, to achieve true prosperity, he said Africa must move from a rent-seeking political economy to one that focuses on production and competition.

‘This shift demands visionary leadership to drive change and unlock Africa’s full potential.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria