By Staff Reporter
Socialist Party General Secretary Dr Cosmas Musmali has warned that a new Scramble for Africa has emerged, perpetuated by some of the world’s super powers.
Presenting a paper titled: The new Scramble for Africa at the third annual Pan Africanism Conference in Winneba, Ghana, Dr Musumali remains optimistic that very soon the continent would change completely.
The conference, which opened on Thursday, has attracted over 400 participants from 52 countries from within and outside Africa.
Participating organisations include socialist formations, trade unions, and liberation movements.
He said although the scramble could not be seen, its manifestations were visible.
“Over the past 20 years, Africa has undergone a dramatic change. This change may take another 20 to 25 years. At the end of the day this will not be the continent that we know. What’s happening is much more complex, much more serious, and much more interesting than the old Scramble for Africa of the late 19th Century. For lack of a better word, it’s called The New Scramble for Africa,” he said on Thursday. “Your question might be: what is it that is worse than the old Scramble for Africa? And it’s happening, why are we not seeing it? You have seen the manifestations of the new scramble, but most likely we are not aware of the depth, most likely we are not aware of the impact.
When capitalism attacks Africa it doesn’t just come to smile; it comes to attack. It’s seeing your resources: it’s seeing gold, it’s seeing diamonds, it’s seeing coffee, it’s seeing copper, gold, and so on and so forth.”
He said Africa’s resources had been mapped by powerful countries for a long time now.
Dr Musumali said just like in the old system, the scramble has got also a super structure.
“The mapping of Africa’s resources has been undertaken for the past 40 years. But how do you get the commodities out of Africa? You get the commodities out of Africa by coming up with the development of infrastructure, by coming up with a network of projects. So, you have US$162 billion per year coming into Africa. US$203 billion is coming out; meaning Africa is the net exporter of capital,” Dr Musumali explained. “There is land available, that land is being marked. So those places in Mexico, in Latin America, in Africa are basically giving away their land. And countries like the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, India, China, Japan, South Korea, are coming in, getting millions of hectres to grow food for their populations. So, the new scramble for Africa has also got the new super structure. So, there’re values that are being pushed in our throats today. Capitalism doesn’t come without its values; that is greedy, individualism, and consumerism.”
He outlined the military bases that countries like the United States had set up on the continent to position itself for the new scramble.
Dr Musumali further explained how the US government was funding programmes that changed the minds of the youth.
He said instead of being the game changers, African youths were, unfortunately being hunted by the American government so that they could be swayed from defending the continent.
“Up to about two years ago the Pentagon always said they only had two military bases in Africa. But now they have bases everywhere and they can attack any place in Africa within two hours. There’s no point in Africa that the American military cannot strike within a period of two hours. Why would a super power come to this level? Why would a super power build so much military capacity?” asked Dr Musumali.
“There’s a game changer; and that game changer is about our youth. But there’s a scramble for the mind and the labour of the African youth. Imperialism is mapping out a geopolitical strategic position. So, if you are a youth; a good rapper, a good musician and you’re in Senegal, I can almost predict you have been invited by the United States to go to the Embassy. If you are a good youth leader and you are in Burkina Faso I can almost predict you have been invited to go and appear at the American Embassy. If you are doing well at school and you are in Kenya, you are in Ghana, most likely you are going to get an American scholarship. Capitalism is putting in huge investment in the youth.”