Nature, Characters and Tactical Strategies of African Military Dictatorships
Preamble: Constitutionally Elected First Generation African Heads of State wanted to make things better, Second Generation Heads of State wanted to make themselves better whilst those who came later did not know how to make things better.
African Despotic Military Heads of State began with Second Generation Leadership.
In documenting one of my works entitled “Tomorrow was African Unity” I decided to interview Credible Country Representatives from several and varying African countries to give case witness accounts of Mal-Governance in their respective countries I received the following sample responses received around the African Continent:
Witness Testimony of Country 16: “Over the years, the corrupt African Heads of State have extended and squeezed their tentacles to fuel cross-border conflicts and rebellions all over the African Continent. They are in drugs and shady arms deals.
“Occasionally, when it suits them most of these demagogues would shed crocodile tears and in the name of Diplomacy, they would denounce the separatist rebels in one region; turn up to mediate in wars, calling African Presidents to Dinner, discreetly bribing opposition figures or rebel leaders with suitcases of cash and bloody drugged monies”
Witness Testimony of Country 17: “In my country Political assassinations, murder of Journalists, mutilation of Students, disappearances of Religious Leaders and maiming of Trade Unionists are never solved.
“In many instances the country leadership would celebrate national days with speeches extending love and peace to journalists, trade union dissidents, students and political opponents without meaningful action. In some instances it would be just threats!
“The other day Journalists were found dead littered with blooded bullets and broken ribs some prisoners found with blooded syringe marks riddled on their dead bodies. Usually and surprising enough inquests would say that the opposing journalists, trade unionists and politicians died of natural causes. Disbelieving mobs and students would always take to the streets on mass riots only to be quelled by bullets to be accused of the shootings!
Witness Testimony of Country 18: “In my country Aid Money is flown out of Partner Country treasury, into Offshore Turntable Banks, then back into International Monetary Finance Systems to secretly finance political machinations.
“My country’s ruling Clan grows fat on heavy, incoherent obscure bureaucracy nested rules, with tax breaks exemptions as well as on commissions that are hard for outsiders to penetrate let alone the masses”
Witness Testimony of Country 19: “In my country successive Presidents are engaged in all types of private and commercial ventures: they own the construction and consultancy firms, private banks and sale of daily essential commodities of people’s needs including rice, bread, maize, flour, sugar, cooking fuel and oil, motor engine fuels……By so doing the ruling clique is able to coerce and cajole people in order to harvest intelligence; at the ports, airports, entertainment centres; nothing important escaped their notice for money and their security.”
Witness Testimony of Country 20: “In my country the leadership surrounds itself with expatriates that shoulder and politely massage them with sugary political demagogic catchword tinted slogans as “Back to the land” (rather Back to the Presidents Land)”
Witness Testimony of Country 21: “In my country Presidential birthdays are launched with dancing girls, flamboyant politicians, get-togethers; champagne in hotels and expensive vehicles and workshops (rather work-chops) if not filter litter talks on his personal achievements.
“The cronies control transport networks, natural resources exploitation, the entertainment sector, the media, business, religious opinion leaders, drugs, piracy and back-door human trafficking to Europe, Visas and National Orders: all for sale to highest bidders”.
Witness Testimony of Country 22: “In my country the military took over from a civil democracy and promised to make a difference with acclamations only to replace the civil democracy with a military democracy. They later indicated that they would rule for three decades with threats to bury all dissidents six feet down into their graves.
Now that they are in civilian clothing the ruling Junta maintains power through the following electoral machinations amongst many others:
• Establishment of multiple fraudulent voting and pooling stations;
• Substitution, replacement, diversion and/or conversion of ballot boxes;
• Inflation and unlawful adjustment of the electoral lists in their favour;
• Corruption if not threatening of so called Independent Electoral Officers;
• Infiltration of voting and pooling stations by their agents provocateurs to incite chaos, confusion and violence to warrant arrest of the opposition;
• Kidnapping and unlawful detention of would be opposition candidates at nomination in order to declare the ruling candidates “unopposed” by day end.
Hence as we count the vote cast; we count side by side the numbers of dead and displaced citizens resulting from the electoral crusades.
Witness Testimony of Country 23: “We as student representatives can affirm that there is “Freedom of Speech” in our countries but not ‘Freedom after Speech”.
“When we students play the game of scrabbles in Africa the words “Election Results” jokingly stand and mean to us the following: “Not true; let’s recount it”.
No doubt after each elections in Africa we stand to count the number of deaths instead of the number of votes actually cast, it’s all rigged elections”.
Witness Testimonies of Countries 24: “We represent varying groups of able bodied men, women and youths from several Africa countries; from drought stricken countries, civil war infested countries, some of us are victims of child trafficking whilst others are victims of child abuse and political repression; whilst some more of us were fishers victims of depleting fisheries to make us want to travel illegally to Europe in search of greener pastures; paradoxically we come from the most resource rich and yet poorest and worst governed continent to make us what we are: Shame on You Politicians.
“In our desire to travel to Europe we were introduced to some political gurus to whom we paid exorbitant sums to be illegally transported to Europe using hand dug canoes amid ocean waves and bad weather with not enough, food, water, clothing and survival means.
“Somewhere in a North African seaport we saw brightly lit night lights and were told that we were in one European Capital. Within a wink some fake coast guards came in to arrest and rob us of our valuables only to dump us along the beach.
“We were picked later up by some coastal city-gangsters who controlled the market and employment outlet channels of marooned and marauding stowaway Africans in this area.
“Soon we were rounded and bargained for sale to some liquidator Shipping Agents as food-for work sailors in the same manner and style as Joseph in the Bible by his brothers.
“Here we were sold and signed as ocean vessel liner deck-hands with the hope that we may eventually land in Europe.
“When we joined the crew our ship was hijacked and some ransom demanded for our release.
“During telephone negotiations we overheard names of persons to whom we initially paid monies (in our respective countries) for this our never ending clandestine trip to Europe; linking the entire episode of illegal clandestine migration an affair between European and Africa based crime and con syndicates.
“We then understood the international network of illegal human trafficker clandestine migration chattels and deep sea piracy. We witnessed huge sums of monies and goods being handed over to our so called captors by their contacts coming from outside.
“We were later tied up to a raft and lowered out at sea to ensure that we would all die together with no survivor to narrate the episode; it attempted mass hang-killing.
Yes, we were abandoned at sea in that hopeless and dangerous grave-raft. After a week or so on the raft thunder winds came with high tides landing us at the Horn of Africa from where you picked us to join your travels and attend the meeting here.
“We would like to note the presence of a strange ladyfish mermaid “Mammy Water’ who guided our path to the point where the waves destroyed our raft.
“The entire process from beginning to end was farce: quack travel operators, fake coast guards who sold to crooked shipping agencies as deck hands; dubious Pirate Hijackers the multiple dealer rogue syndicates who acted as go-betweens that ending up to share goods, cash and huge booty ransom money.
“This is business in Africa they said to us.
“Indeed business in some African countries could be summarized as trafficking, gun running, drugs, toxic dumping, prostitution, cigarette contrabands, illicit manufacture of goods and trade, money laundering. Revenues from these illicit businesses far exceed combined national budgets of certain African countries.
“The only reality in the entire episode is that the prayers of our African Ancestral Spirits answered to make us alive sound and safe to witness this glorious day’s Meeting”
Witnesses and Testimonies of Countries continued for the other countries with country witness number 54 concluding as follows:
“In essence the despotic African Leaders have maintained colonial boundaries in order to “tribalize”parliamentary elections; narrow down parliamentary debates, pave the way to presidential palaces with innocent blood and build their powers on the sweat of the poor and powerless”
The meeting found that African Unity was a question of Do or Die. That it was a question of survival for Africans as a Race of People.
“One Capital Asset of these despotic regimes is their ability to control and allocate national wealth and resources to bidders to keep in hand every opportunist loyalty.
“We have records of many circumstances when the ruling regimes plugged their baron-lackey sycophants into the icy-cake leakages of the national financial economic budgetary system through linked interests and various complex patchwork deals.”
“In my countries when the formal laws break down, informal solidarity networks take over and become prone to venal disorder; leading to broken national interests giving way for networks allowing different kinds of groups of European, American, Asian and other traders to flourish amid the chaos in the country.
“These European, American, Asian and Arabo-Syrian Traders plug my country leadership to world economy via ill gotten riches and international spy networks. By so doing they have created the unusually potent regimes into the World Economic Order”.
Rogue groups of European, American, Far Eastern, Arabo-Syrian and other Traders also provide our rulers with side channels into international politics, linking them with shadow power structures that are more important than the The IMF and The UN.
“These invisible wealth ridden subterranean networks explain why progressive opposition never get anywhere in my country. The opposition appears only to fall under the clutches, tentacles, barrels, bullets and truncheon blows of these wacko despotic African regimes.
“All Opposition seem to rise, crest then sink into irrelevance, as if sapped by a mysterious undertow of the ruling mystic cult.
‘Many firebrand opposition leaders, who roused masses against our corrupt regimes, are now part of the so called presidential majorities and have become members of the group of wealthy pro-regime political militant parties.
“Other opposition elements are nothing but convivial opposition elements that pretend to openly oppose the status quo but work for them covertly. Hence many of opposition our politicians are seen driving luxury cars and wear latest suits and traditional dress modes”.
It has to be emphasized that during the African strive for Independence the African Military Soldiers joined forces with the colonial systems to arrest, harass, maim and kill civilian independence activists in each and all countries. Indeed Civilians had to go into guerilla armed struggle to free the remaining countries: Guinea Bissau, Angola, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Namibia, and South Africa.
Shame On The African Military For Not Liberating A Single African Country!!!
A good piece yet again by Mr Johnson. Detail, thought provoking and pertinent.