The African Image: who is responsible?

The African Image: who is responsible?

Well, today my battles with my alarm clock and it’s jealous attitude for my relationship with my bed were not only few but short-lived as well.

The usual daily routine of bump onto a taxi, hit potholes, complain over fares, marvel at the sleeping street beggars,  pay a coin to street begging kids then reach office just in time to catch the editorial meeting, is what I went through today morning not forgetting the fact that I had to pitch another activist story idea.

The concept  of African Image on the global scene has not been totally new in my debates overtime but having to sit in a room with hundreds of other global citizens to talk about it sounded an interesting idea which I certainly bought from the newsroom colleagues’ story auction. (it doesn’t happen quite often though).

To sit in a room with elites, professionals in their due areas and all they talk about is international media misinterpreting Africa is I think the most irritating, hair rising and catastrophic debate I’ve had this week coming  just after the mosquito nets saga. Okay, lets get things straight, do foreign journalists pick poverty stricken kids from hollywood and insert them atop every magazine about Africa or these kids are African? Do these wars between countries get started by cameras of journalists or our insensitive leaders?


We are the Africa where presidents buy 1.7 trillion jets when their populace wails in hunger, we are the Africa with thousands of enterprising youths unemployed while billions of monies that could have been vital for transformation are wasted in corruption. We are that Africa where presidents refute democratically arrived at election results, we are that Africa where youths wake up with their pants below the waist after spending a whole night in club to listen to lil wayne music and after ask you the parents for money which you also give them as well, we are that Africa where heads of state think their states are monarchies, we are that Africa whose news stories in local media rotate around leaders and where they are going or who they are bonking, we are that Africa where people work 6 hours a day and expect trillions of money from it, We are that Africa that allows to cow down to international pressure at the expense of our own citizenry BUT WORSESTILL, WE ARE THAT AFRICA THAT SITS IN CONFERENCES EVERYDAY TO DISCUSS WHAT OUR PROBLEMS ARE AND LAUGH OVER THEM THEN DODGE THEM AFTER. FACE REALITY!!

That brings me to the question who is responsible for our image? journalists, citizens, leaders or the almighty?

Apart from the almighty that has played his part, the rest are responsible (i think)

Start with the leaders and you will know why, leaders are by description people we appoint to direct or control our affairs, in that case one can argue that they have the biggest role to play in Africa’s image but in actual sense, leaders are elected by us which makes the citizenry the biggest role bearers in this whole fracas, the citizenry is me and you to be precise YOU. If you want Africa to remain as peanuts then you choose peanut leaders and sustain them in power or alternatively, if you want a prosperous Africa you choose prosperous leaders, in the event that research proves me right, Mandela and Kagame are widely accepted as the face of African politics but why do we neglect Museveni, Mugabe and Afewerki? we are dodging our own problems, streamline these lumpens to the standards of Mandela and you will have an Africa that’s the standard not the Africa you want international media to portray.

“painting a slum doesn’t make it a skyscraper” southafrican proverb

“African problems are like a flowing tap, and what we do is wipe the floor of the water.” my proverb.

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