African Governments Doing Too Little To Stop Spread Of Islamic Terrorists In Continent – PLO Lumumba

The Foremost anti-corruption advocate and former Director of the Kenya Law School, Prof. PLO Lumumba, has expressed concern over the apparent nonchalant attitude of governments of African countries toward curtailing the scourge of militant Islamist terrorists ravaging the continent.

He made the remarks when he appeared as a guest at the online interview programme 90Minutes Africa hosted by Rudolf Okonkwo on Sunday.

A large swathe of Africa is currently under the occupation of Islamist terrorists and other non-state actors whose violent activities have led to the death of thousands and displacement of hundreds of thousands of innocent people.

In Nigeria, the menacing activities of Boko Haram and the Islamic State have devastated many communities in the north, with mass kidnappings, killings, and extortion featuring prominently in their atrocious methods.

Prof. Lumumba, who is the chairman of the PLO Lumumba Foundation, argued that the ideology of these terrorist groups operating in Africa should be viewed in the context of the Abuja declaration, which stated that there is a plot by radical elements in the “Islamic world to Arabize and Islamize Africa.”

The former Director of the defunct Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) went further, saying that it is in the context of that statement from the Abuja declaration that we must see the Boko Haram, Al-Shaabab and the other splinter groups’ activities in Africa.

“One can see in the entire Sahelian region now, from Mauritania to Mali to Burkina Faso to Sudan to Niger to Libya, how this agenda is playing out. In my view, there is no deliberate effort on the part of African governments to deal with this particular version of Islam which I think is not classical Islam.

“These are terrorists who are using the name of Islam to spread an ideology which is violent and is designed to dominate. And they have not only captured the Sahelian region and parts of North Africa, but they can also be found in the Horn of Africa,” the law professor said.

He expressed concern about the future of Africa if the trend is not reversed.

“And we don’t seem to have a plan to check their spread in the continent. If we are not careful, in the next 50 years, it is this bastardized version of Islam that will dominate the continent of Africa,” Prof. Lumumba said.

PLO Lumumba, who is a solicitor at Lumumba & Lumumba Advocates in Nairobi, Kenya, said that the political crises that arise after most elections in Africa are a result of the failure of Africans to tinker with imported governance systems that they called democracy, to suit their local realities.

“I don’t refer to them as a democracy but as imported governance system that doesn’t reflect the African reality,” he said in reference to the system of government in Africa.

The renowned pan-Africanist also called on African governments, through the instrumentality of the African Union, to lend a strong voice to the demand for reparation for the devastation wrought on the continent by the long years of slavery and colonization.

Prof. Lumumba agreed that there is currently a neo-colonial scramble for Africa which involves new players like the Chinese and Russians. To counter this new scramble, he called on Africa to heed the call of the first President of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah, who advocated for a unified Africa with a single government, army, and currency.

He said, “If we want to ensure that African countries are sustainable, we must have a united government which is confederal in character but which allows individual units to deal with matters of daily lives such as policing, taxation, agriculture, education, etcetera.

“So the confederal government will only deal with issues of currency, foreign policy, and policy coordination. In that way, all boundaries would be dissolved, and we would become a unified continent in diversity. I see the possibility.

“It will not be in our lifetime, but if we plant the seed today and nurture it, in a hundred years, that seed will grow into a tree, and that tree will become the Confederation of African States.”