The coming Pan African Parliament (PAP) elections are once again bringing to the fore the hidden divisions that exist within the continental body. The jostling for positions has started behind the scenes and once again money is exchanging hands in a corrupt way. The election of Mahamat back as head of the AU Commission was a terrible mistake that the continent will one day regret for sure.
First, unashamedly, he was bought by Israel to bulldoze its observer status to the African Union with millions of dollars having exchanged hands. He tried to bypass the heads of states on the continent as if he is presiding over a federal African government. Second, the guy does not even hide his corrupt tendencies at all in his dealings whether at international and continental level.
Third, ever since he ascended to power at the AU, he has made it a must that many of the top positions at the Commission are filled with unqualified people from Francophone African countries, especially from his region. Fourth, he is responsible for working towards allowing AFRICOM to set up its headquarters on the continent. Our leadership on the continent has long been in opposition to the setting up of AFRICOM on the continent.
Furthermore, he is believed to have amassed a lot of wealth and is believed to own a lot of properties scattered across the world. Much of this wealth is definitely ill gotten comprising of money from kickbacks.
Politically, he has failed as a leader to steer the AU to great heights. Instead, he has reneged and trampled upon the AU charter with regards to the Palestinian and Western Sahara where he has let the issues of these two countries unresolved while at the same time refusing to honour UN and AU resolutions that demand self-determination for these countries.
At a time when Africa needs workable solutions to its many problems, like the grain and energy crises that is currently going on in the world, Mr. Mahamat is failing to proffer alternative solutions that will see the continent avert these problems. Is he failing to see that Africa could be the next breadbasket of the world? Why not come up with workable ideas like working on the mighty Inga Dam in the DRC which could light up Africa and in turn mechanize its agriculture?
Africa has the most arable land in the world which could easily be turned into AU project farms to feed its people and the entire world like what Russia/Ukraine has been doing. However, what we don’t have on the continent is a visionary, and incorruptible leadership to begin to move towards that realization.
As long as we have a leadership that wants to compete with President Emmanuel Macron in putting on the most expensive suits, we are doomed. A leadership that thinks with their stomachs, then we have a problem.
In a few days from now, the entire AU Commission descends on Midrand South Africa, for elections at the Pan African Parliament (PAP). It is here where Mr. Mahamat’s influence should be kept in check. Africa should not allow him to divide the continent and allow one region to dominate the leadership of the PAP. Leadership should be allowed to rotate on regional basis so as to allow the spirit of continental integration and cohesion to prevail.
That way Africa is better when no region is left out of its collective leadership. This time around SADC has put forward the name of Chief Fortune Charumbira from Zimbabwe. He is a very competent man who will definitely provide good leadership. Let the whole SADC and indeed Africa support him. Aluta Continua!
Dr. Mustafa Mheta
Senior researcher/Head of Africa Desk
Media Review Network SA
Dean: School of Languages at Somali
National University (SNU) Mogadishu
Federal Republic of Somalia