Ex-Malawian President, Banda, Soludo Seek Unity among African Countries to Stem Theft of Natural Resources

Ex-Malawian President, Banda, Soludo Seek Unity among African Countries to Stem Theft of Natural Resources

*Obi blames bad leadership for continent’s woes

David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka

Former President of Malawi, Dr Joyce Banda, has said uniting Africa under the name of the United States Of Africa would stop exploitation of the continent’s natural resources.

She said the neo-colonial attitude of the West towards Nigeria could be stopped through unity among African countries.
The former president spoke at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, during the 12th Annual Zik Lecture Series in honour of Late Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe.
Speaking under the theme: ‘Reclaiming Ziks World: Climate Justice And Africa’s Sustainable Development,’ Banda lamented that Africa was not completely free, given the fact that there was a monumental flight and exploitation of the continent’s natural resources by her former colonisers.

“We in Africa are not completely free and these are facts that we cannot wish away, and Africa has continued to be at the receiving end of the climatic change.
“This is occasioned by the looting of African resources which of course led to the climatic change and we African leaders have the responsibility to preserve our future and the future of our children.

“Those of us who are Presidents and governors must tell ourselves that the natural resources on our land belong to the people that we are leading and do not belong to our pockets.
“We must inform ourselves that the wealth of our nation is not ours and as leaders we are custodians of that wealth on behalf of the people that we lead.”
In his contribution, Anambra State Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, who shared the same view said it was a new dawn in Africa, noting  that the continent was going back to Zikist ideology which was about one united livable and prosperous Africa.

“And I think that message shall be in our minds to build and form one nation and with that we face the rest of the world.
“It is important that we must forge one United Africa and Her Excellency, when you leave here, I want you to take this message as a former President, that we must come together and form a common peace, and that it is time to go back to that Zikist era with the slogan Africa Unite. Without unity of Africa all that we are doing to make a change cannot be actualised,” he said.

The presidential candidate of Labour Party in the 2023 general election and former Anambra State Governor, Mr Peter Obi, who was also at the function identified bad leadership as tje root of Africa’s problems.
“My contribution is that the problems of Africa and Nigeria rest squarely on bad leadership and it is bad leadership that is the burden of Africa and it is not the colonisers.

“I give you example of our problem here in Nigeria: As a professor your salary is N400,000.00 and if they pay you without spending your money for 30 years, your salary will amount to N144 million which is not up to what we use to buy cars for our legislators in Nigeria.
“This university gets about N10 million from the federal government as subvention monthly and for one year it would be about N120 million.

“We have 500 professors, 4,000 lecturers and 40,000 students and so five of our universities will get about N600 million annually, which when converted to dollars is about $500,000.00 and that is what we use to go to meeting of United Nations for one week. That is our problem in Nigeria,” he said.

The event was chaired by Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, and attended by Vice Chancellor of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Prof Charles Esimone, Senator Ndi Obi and a host of others.

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