The current President of Malawi, Lazarus Chakwera has said that Africa risks being plundered of its natural resources by the East and the West.
He was speaking at the 42nd Sadc summit this week in Kinshasa, DRC. The event was held under the theme, “Promoting Industrialisation through agro-processing, mineral beneficiation, and regional value chains for inclusive and resilient economic growth”.
We must defend what is ours and make sure that no one takes from us what is ours. If the world wants what we have, they must buy it in a fair trade so that we can use the proceeds to build ourselves new cities, new universities, new infrastructure, new industries, and new programmes that will lift our people out of poverty and meet the needs of the most vulnerable among us, including people with disabilities.
With the resources we have, we refuse to be anyone’s beggar, and with the unity we have, we must refuse to let anyone steal from us or use us to steal from our own people or each other. The plunder that we have allowed the West to conduct here in the DRC is a sin we need to repent of, resolve, and refuse to see repeated anywhere else in our region. So let’s show and tell the world with one voice that Africa is open for business, but it is not for sale.
Our collaboration in repelling outbreaks of conflict in pockets of our region, and our strengthening of ties of member states will usher in a new era of solidarity and brotherhood. We are adding value to those who preceded us.
It takes only Africans to build the African continent and no foreigners will develop the continent. When they give us money it cannot help us build our roads, and in the past, they have only fuelled tensions.
There is no one outside Africa who is coming to build Africa the way we want it to be built, not the Americans, not the Europeans, not the Asians. We must leverage our natural resources, which if we are not careful will be stolen by ‘forces’ from the East and the West.
– The Herald
Chakwera is the outgoing chairperson of SADC. The incoming chairperson is DRC President Felix Tshisekedi. The chairperson position rotates on a yearly basis among the 16 member states.