African leaders tell UNGA: Africa must be treated as a global partner, not sidelined

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by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – African leaders delivered an unequivocal message to the UN General Assembly last week that Africa is a global power that deserves to be treated by the West as an equal partner and not sidelined as a charity case, the Associated Press reports.

The African continent of 1.3 billion people is rich in natural resources and has made developmental progress since most of its countries achieved independence from Western colonization over the last 60 years. Nevertheless, Africa struggles under a global economic system that keeps it heavily dependent on Western aid, and in perpetual debt, as its countries are forced to pay eight times more than the richest European nations, AP reports.

“We as Africa have come to the world, not to ask for alms, charity or handouts, but to work with the rest of the global community and give every human being in this world a decent chance of security and prosperity,” Kenya’s President William Ruto said in his address to the UN General Assembly last week.

“Africa has no need for partnerships based on official development aid that is politically oriented and tantamount to organized charity,” President Felix-Antoine Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo told the UN Assembly in a separate speech. “Trickling subsidies filtered by the selfish interests of donors will certainly not allow for a real and effective rise of our continent.”

In a no-holds-barred speech, Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo said Africa was struggling to deal with the aftermath of the Trans-Atalantic Slave Trade. “It is time to acknowledge openly that much of Europe and the United States have been built from the vast wealth harvested from the sweat, tears, blood, and horrors of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the centuries of colonial exploitation,” Akufo-Addo said.

Mozambique’s President Filipe Nyusi asserted that a more inclusive global financial system is required, one in which Africa can take its place as “a partner that has (a) lot to offer to the world and not only a warehouse that supplies cheap commodities to countries or international multinational corporations.”

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