Thursday, 12 December 2013

Nigeria Airbrushed Out Of Mandela’s Life Story

It’s amusing to see the same people who jailed Mandela several years ago falling over themselves to eulogise him at his death. This is not only because he showed in his life time that he is made of better material than all of them put together but also because we Africans allowed them to take centre stage.

Africans always allow Europeans and their American cousins to call the shots. It was Europeans who sent Mandela to jail and the same Europeans released him after he was considered more dangerous locked up than free.

They dismantled apartheid when it became an embarrassment to them.

Now they are the ones telling us Mandela’s life story and all the efforts other African countries, especially Nigeria, played to set him free have been carefully deleted from history.

A wise man once said, “history is merely a piece of fiction written by the Victors”.

When Mandela left prison a wiser and more matured man than when he was thrown into jail he confounded his captors who quickly switched gears and became his best friends.

On the other hand, a disappointed Mandela was hoping to find an independent Africa with progressive leadership but what he discovered was that most African countries were actually in a worse state than they were under colonial leadership when he went to jail.

It was only natural for him to become best friends with the same people who jailed him especially after he discovered that the economies of most African countries were still tied to the apron strings of their former colonial masters.

If Nelson Mandela died with any regrets it’s probably the fact that he was the only African leader that Europeans and Americans had any respect for.

Take for instance his memorial service where America’s president was given centre stage to read an eulogy. President Jonathan was at the same memorial service but no major media organisation acknowledged his presence.

Yeah, nobody acknowledged the presence of Goodluck Jonathan, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at Mandela’s memorial.
Nobody remembers that Nigeria spent millions of Dollars to support the African National Congress (ANC) members in exile.

It was Nigeria that led a successful boycott of the 1986 Commonwealth Games in protest against the attitude of the Thatcher led Conservative government to apartheid South Africa.

Nigerian passports were issued to opponents of the apartheid regime so that they could travel around the world and drum support for release of Nelson Mandela and dismantle apartheid when the South African government wouldn’t issue them passports.

For several years, Nigerian Civil Servants were contributing a part of their salaries to support the struggle against apartheid.

What we got paid in return is not appreciation but a complete airbrush from history and it’s not because Mandela and South Africans are ungrateful but because they are too ashamed to associate themselves with our leaders.

Mandela would sooner travel to a country where there is stable power supply and security; make friends with Clinton and Blair, who were held accountable to the people they governed, than hang around those who would treat him like a god while oppressing the people who elected them to office.

Mandela would rather associate himself with a country where a cabinet minister resigned over accusations he insulted Policemen on duty than hang around a President who refused to sack a minister facing legislative probe for spending $1.5 million dollars on bullet proof luxury cars.

Madiba avoided Africa because the state of affairs in so many African countries reminded him of how black South Africans were treated by white South African only worse because it’s now black Africans oppressing other black Africans.

When the tide turned around for Mandela, the organised western world – the same people who jailed him – made a decision to claim his legacy while his African brothers, who paid a price to get him freed, were busy tearing down the good work they built.

The same way he realised that the way forward for South Africa was forgiveness and reconciliation he also realised that the sensible thing to do was to fraternise with the people who jailed him and not the profligate and corruption ridden African leadership.

We pushed “our” Mandela back into the arms of his jailers even after he had been set free from a physical prison because he realised that African leaders may be parading themselves around in luxury cars and private jets but they were still ideologically imprisoned.

Since he didn’t want to go back to any kind of prison he aligned himself with those who put him in jail because they did not only set him free from a physical prison they also had the power to set him free from the ideological prison that other African leaders were still trapped in.

They are now the ones re-writing Mandela’s life story and thanks to our leaders our children will probably never know the role we played in setting him free from jail and South Africa from an evil political system.

Culled from here

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