A prominent Kenyan lawyer and activist has described the new wave of emigration of African talents abroad as modern-day slavery.
Prof. Patrick Lumumba, a former head of the Kenyan anti-corruption agency, was speaking at an Independence Day Anniversary event in Lagos, Nigeria.
He said that Africa must redefine itself and that the trend of mass exodus of professionals from Africa to Europe, America, and others was like modern slavery.
“When we judge Africa, we must ask ourselves from whose lens are we judging Africa?” Lumumba said. “The colonizers left (Africa) but never left. Africa is the only country that is still being referred to as francophone or anglophone.”
“We were the enablers of the first industrial revolution when our ancestors were taken to work on the farms in Europe. We enabled that revolution. Right now, we’re enabling the fourth and fifth industrial revolutions which is why there are talent visas because they’re taking our talents. If it is not our nurses, it is our IT experts or our engineers. We are gleefully letting them away. When I see our heads of state say we have signed the contract to take our workers to Saudi Arabia, (it is) modern-day slavery.”
Nigeria to Consider Postal Service Franchise
Nigeria’s Minister of Communication, Innovation, and Digital Economy, Dr Bosun Tijani, has said that the government is considering introducing a franchise system into the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) in order to revive it.
Tijani said that if NIPOST was not working as expected, a lot of sectors of the nation’s economy would not be able to add value to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products.
“The reality is that we can’t have a vibrant economy if people cannot move goods,” Tijani said. “If a farmer in Funtua cannot grow fresh vegetables and get them to Pastor Poju in Lagos, who is conscious of his health and wants to eat clean, then we have a problem. That farmer is not going to be able to add to our GDP, Pastor Poju is not going to get the service that he requires. So, the GDP number won’t be where we want it to be.”
“So, NIPOST has a critical role to play in connecting all of us. So, we are trying as much as possible to re-imagine what NIPOST is all about, perhaps turn it into a franchise where a young businessman can own a NIPOST location, not own outright, but the government can franchise it out to you and you’ll run that location.”
“That location will not only serve for delivery purposes, it’ll also become a location where you can go and sign up for your passport if you want to. You can go there to open a bank account. You can go there to also transact all sorts of businesses. It becomes a business centre, really, for you. That’s also something we are reimagining,” the minister said.
Africa is facing a brain drain as many professionals are leaving the continent in search of better opportunities in Europe, America, and other parts of the world. This is a major challenge for Africa as it deprives the continent of the skills and expertise it needs to develop.
Nigeria’s Postal Service is struggling to keep up with the demands of the modern economy. It is slow and inefficient, and many Nigerians do not trust it to deliver their mail. The government is considering franchising the service to private investors in order to improve its efficiency and reliability.