View Full Version : Africans, Tear Down The illegal Berlin Walls

4th July 2011, 06:47 PM
Berlin is noted for building notorious walls to divide peoples. First let us be clear that there is a huge difference between the physical Berlin wall which separated the West Berlin from East Berlin and divided the World between the East and the West during the cold war era.

What type
of Africa do we want?

An Africa
imposed on us or an Africa built through our own abilities and efforts?

A question
this piece would like to explore.

We often
hear from our Europeans neighbors when talking about Africa,

This must

That must

He must go.

She must

They never
say the illegal Berlin walls in Africa must go.

The Berlin
walls in Africa are illegal and must go.

unity is the surest way to dismantle the artificially and the illegally built
Berlin walls in Africa.

The illegal
Berlin walls in Africa are a curse.

We must
break the curse

We must
undo the curse

We must
remove the curse

We must
reverse the curse

The illegal
Berlin walls in Africa must go NOW.

And the notorious and imaginary one built in Berlin in 1884/85 and transported to Africa purposely to create a wedge among Africans and keep Africans perpetually divided, weak and dependent. In 1884/85, some few Europeans arrogated to themselves the right to butcher Africa like the Elephant and share the meat among themselves.

To get a picture of what happened at the so-called Berlin Conference, pay a visit to a slaughterhouse and observe how the butchers work. This is how the operation is captured by the African novelist, short story writer and essayist, Ayi Kwei Armah.

“The dismemberment of Africa at the 1885 Berlin Conference, a process much like the butchering of a huge elephant for sharing among jubilant hunter kin, marked the triumphal peak of the theory and practice of European supremacy.”

At this conference, they built artificial, illegal and imaginary walls in Africa. Unlike the physical wall built in Berlin, these were not made of concrete, but were built in our minds.

In our mental state as Africans, we see ourselves divided by these imaginary walls, meanwhile we are one. These imaginary walls have made us to see one another as the enemy instead of seeing ourselves of belonging to one huge and same family.

In our minds as Africans stand the illegal Berlin walls that divide Nigeria and Benin,Gambia and Senegal, Zambia and Zimbabwe, Libya and Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria,Mali and Niger, Guinea and Liberia, Uganda and Kenya, Chad and Sudan, Namibiaand Angola, Gabon and Congo, Ghana and Cote D’Ivoire, Somalia and Ethiopia and so on and so forth.

The architects of the illegal walls of Berlin in Africa intentionally built the walls in our minds through education and religion. Therefore, in our mind’s world as Africans stand the walls of Berlin. So with these walls built in our minds and unseen with the physical eyes, unlike the physical one built in Berlin, their removal is very difficult, but not impossible.

Walls protect or separate. In our case, the walls were built to separate us and make us easy preys for domination and control through the divide-and-conquer tactics. We need to build new walls in Africa to defend our humanity, dignity and resources. This can only happen through a continental Unity.

China’s great wall has symbolically served as a bulwark for China. Today China can be proud for fortifying her territory against external aggression. “A United States of Africa is the most visionary solution to the minor issues of ethnicity and regionalism because in an African Federative Union we are all Africans” Prof. Molefi Kete Asante

In January 20, 1981, when the former US President Reagan took over the US administration, he made it a duty to see to it that the wall of Berlin dividing Europe and hindering the growth and advancement of European people, wealth and power is removed. He saw that the Berlin wall was hindering the free flow of economic and political activities in Europe, thereby affecting the prosperity and security of Europe and by extension the United States.

He therefore challenged the then Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev to work diligently and speed up the breaking down or removal of the Berlin wall, which had become a huge obstacle to European/US advancement.

He spoke those famous words “Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall”. By the time of Reagan’s request, Mr. Gorbachev had already initiated the “perestroika and glasnost” policy in the then Soviet Union. So answering Reagan’s request was not difficult, as the perestroika and
glasnost met the Reagan’s request and the chemical reaction that ensued, saw the eventual dismantling of the cold war physical Berlin wall, opening the floodgates for a new era of Western power, wealth and exchange of ideas. Unfortunately, Africa is still locked up behind the walls built in Berlin over a century ago. No wonder we are made to feel like illegal human beings everywhere we go.


Long before Reagan appeared on the scene our independent forefathers led by the indefatigable Kwame Nkrumah with clarity, merged the challenge of Reagan and the response of Gorbachev.

Throughout his political career, Kwame Nkrumah forcefully advocated for the removal of the illegal Berlin imposed walls in Africa as the surest way to end Africa’s unfortunate and unacceptable misery. Balkanization of Africa, he claimed was Africa’s bane.

A united Africa, he argued had the potential of unleashing a continental wealth and security unmatched in the annals of human history. Recent happenings on the African continent have proven him right. Sadly Africans in his generation rejected his sound and visionary counsel.

We are today experiencing the devastating effects of rejecting his counsel. Words never die. We are emboldened as never before to re-ignite the fire and restate that Africa must unite and remove the illegal Berlin walls in Africa. This time around, we hope Africans will respond positively and bring down the illegal Berlin walls in Africa.

I have personally witnessed the enormous transformation that the fall of the Berlin wall has brought to Germany/Europe and the entire TransAtlantic alliance. Germany being the economic and scientific and technological engine of Europe influences the dynamics of the European society. So a rich and united and powerful Germany is translated to a rich, united and powerful Europe. Today with the Berlin wall down, cross border exchange of goods, people and ideas are on the increase. Europe is more powerful, prosperous and secured than any time in her history.

So what are we waiting for? The examples are there for all with eyes to see. Let me quote Kwame Nkrumah, ”From the examples before
us, in Europe and the United States of America, it is therefore patent that we in Africa have the resources, present and potential, for creating the kind of society that we are anxious to build”.

For us in Africa, it was a missed opportunity 50 years ago. It is not too late for us to recapture the fervor and the transformational power of African Unity.The advantage in removing the walls of Berlin in Africa far outweighs living in Africa separated by the illegal walls of Berlin. Let us reject the Africa imposed on us and build our own Africa.

The illegal Berlin Walls in Africa must go. Behind our diversities is the penchant for unity. Africans, tear down the illegal Berlin walls in Africa.


A United
Africa - More Wealth

A United
Africa - More Security

A United
Africa - Less Poverty

A United
Africa - A Clean and Green Environment

A United
Africa - Modern and Sophisticated Infrastructure

Source: Boafo, Otibu