AT THE exact same moment when
This includes nation states, historical players or even international financial institutions such as the
Who is ultimately responsible for the betterment of a nation's people; an economist in
The curse of African excitement:
African economies suffer from waves of buzzwords. There was the 'African renaissance' of the late 90s, 'a new crop of African leaders' at the turn of the century, and now the phrase of the day is '
Recalling all these, President
All that being said there has been immense change. The last decade of African development has been astonishing. In the last 10 years, the gross domestic product has increased more than four and a half times. According to the President of the
Measuring leadership is so subjective that it can honestly render significant data biased. Even something as universally appreciated as democracy can be difficult to prove (after all some Americans still debate if
But, even with all this, there is this nagging feeling that the current crop of leaders arejust simply better than their predecessors. Listening to Thabo Mbeki and Benjamin Mkapa openly call their peers selfish and laying much of the blame for the lack of development on the shoulders of leaders was refreshing.
Benjamin Mkapa went so far to even scold leaders who seem to blame others for their problems by quoting Shakespeare, "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves."
In another moment that went against the faulty notion that Africans shouldn't air their dirty laundry, President
All this is reason for hope. African leaders no long just accept what they're told by outsiders. Foreign NGOs and international organizations' experts aren't infallible and African bureaucrats are openly calling their recommendations into question.
Let's stop blaming others:
Foreign powers will never work for African interests and the swifter that we disavow ourselves of the contrary the better we will all be. African leaders are in debt to their people and not the other way around. It is time that African leaders accept that if their countries begin to fall behind in social and/or economic indicators, they are ultimately responsible.
African populations have to take up this responsibility too. Looking at
These problems are related to outside interference, poor economic histories and idle uneducated populations, but far worse is the void of empathetic and determined leadership.
The writer is a Rwandan economist based in
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