Radio Shrine! Gan! Gan! Lately on this page I have been doing some video streaming from those who know, people who give substance to all the messages passed out here. For those of you who took the time to watch them, you saw for example: African Origin of civilization by Cheick Anta Diop. For your information, Dr Diop is perhaps the greatest in terms of scholarship on African civilization in the 20th Century. Apart from Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois, Cheick Anta Diop was the only other man awarded the honour as one who has the greatest impact on Black thoughts in the 20th Century. Those who had the opportunity to meet him describe Diop as a man of incredible versatility. He was a great Physicist, and was privileged to have worked in one of the most advanced laboratories in France under the supervision of Frédéric Joliot-Curie who in turn was a close friend of Albert Einstein.
At a time when only about a dozen people in the world could understand Einstein, Dr. Cheick Anta Diop had already translated his (Einstein’s) works in his native Senegalese Wolof language. Because of his scientific skills, Dr. Diop was able to accomplish many fits. He for example invented the chemical process, to test quantity of melanin in the skins of Black people who had died thousands of years ago. By this process he could prove without the slightest shadow of doubt in a scientific manner that the mummies that were excavated in Egypt belonged to Black people. Prior to his works, the scientific world was divided on the true identity of the mummies from the Egyptian Pharaohs – some claimed that they belong to Semites, Caucasians, or whatever but African.
Thanks to Dr. Diop’s works, he was able to prove that the quantity of melanin present in the skins of the tested mummies could only come from a Black person. He was until his death in 1986, the President of the world Black Researchers Association that has as objective to assemble and highlight Africans and the Diaspora Africa from all related fields (history, anthropology, literature, political science, etc.) The contributions by black individuals, movements, and groups of both the present and the past with a view to enhancing our understanding of their true philosophical and historical importance as well as their specific contributions to areas of creative and intellectual endeavours such as science, humanities, the arts, etc. You also saw, video stream of African Presence in the Americas and Africa Presence in Early Europe by Dr. Ivan Sertima. As often reiterated on this page, apart from Cheikh Anta Diop and Théophile Obenga, Dr. Ivan Van Sertima, is also another personage that has contributed immensely towards African awareness in the last half of the 20th Century and beginning of the 21st Century.
In the video stream of African Presence in Early Europe, Dr. Sertima puts in perspective the history of the role of the African in world culture. He considered recent archaeological and anthropological studies that present new evidence of little known contributions by African people to the advancement of European civilization. He detailed the physical and cultural presence of Africans in Europe. Other topics covered include: the debt owed to the Moors for the Renaissance. Leo Africanus’ Geographical History of Africa as a source for Shakespeare’s vision of Othello, the Africoid Grimaldis in Europe, the black Moors and the origin of Greek philosophy, African popes and black Madonna’s. The book with the same title is divided into six parts: The First Europeans, African Presence in the Ancient Mediterranean Isles and Mainland Greece, Africans in the European Religious Hierarchy, African Presence in Western Europe, African Presence in Northern Europe, and African Presence in Eastern Europe.
Also video stream of the Destruction of Black Civilization by Dr. Chancellor Williams based on a series of interviews by Dr. Chancellor James Williams - author of "The Destruction of Black Civilization". He shares his view of "Black self-destruction" and its causes, how for example as a young person in the school system during history class, young Black students are embarrassed to identify with African past history. How Africans are brainwashed with the history of Europeans as RICH and according to their books African origin, history, culture, heritage, home land, etc. started at slavery.
Also for those who understand the French language, video stream of the Transatlantic Slave Trade by Professor Bwenba Bong and how it destroyed African production Industry. The Professor of Cameroon origin showed how during the Arab slavery in Africa, the continent continued to produce – her Industries functioned and continued to feed her population. How Arabs were even employed in African Industries and in agriculture. But with the arrival of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, African Industries stopped and the continent could only produce humans for the transatlantic trade. Those who attempted to cultivate the land were forced into slavery. It is important to note that while this exercise is not intended as simple revisionism or delving into forgotten past, it has as objective to prepare our minds for the struggle ahead. We have to bear in mind like I often reiterated on this page that the situation on the African continent is getting worse. Many people have died for the cause trying to change things in Africa, and for me I think it will amount to a worse crime to let great people die in vain without any attempt to give fulfilment to the cause they lived and died for.
In the last decades we agree, trust has completely evaporated from our public life. Again as often reiterated, no-body believes the word of politicians, corporate leaders, bankers, religious figures, etc. And this applies to leaders in Europe and the Western Hemisphere too. They have in the majority been exposed as total frauds, hence an urgent need for action to take our country and indeed continent back. We all agree that education is the key to make any difference but certainly, not the type of education existing in Africa today. Have we stopped to ask ourselves why there are such high drop-out rates in African schools?
The answer is not far fetched; our school children have nothing to identify with, they have been taught to look-up to Europe and America for inspiration. According to books available in the school curriculum: maths, history, reading, writing, etc were invented in Europe and the Western Hemisphere – leaving African children with an inferiority complex. These are not the same thing we learn from all those video stream posted on this page. As I have often stated here the work of a whole generation of scholars will go to waste, unless these works are channelled through African school curriculum and education system. It is important to look around us to understand the urgent need for action. Blog after blog, headline after headline all heralding the fantastic anarchy that corruption has led Nigeria and indeed Africa.
Even the first executive governor of Kaduna State in his blog: Balarabemusa@77 declared that “Nigerian leaders are thieves”. Alhaji Balarabe Musa, lamented that governance system in Nigeria had changed from the one based on public interest first to self-interest first. He said Nigerian leaders from counsellor to the presidency have always emerged the richest in their respective constituencies after leaving office. Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, was quoted in one of those blogs saying that political office holders steal state funds because Nigerians do not stone them. Governor Rotimi Amaechi statement, reminds me of a song from Fela titled: ‘Original Suffer Head’: “….before we all go Jefa Head Oh! We must be ready to fight for am oh! If they have water, light, food and house in France today it is because the French people in 1789 made a REVOLUTION.
We all know very well that revolution is not knitting embroideries, it not having dinners and parties. Instead of Nigeria’s political class encouraging the masses to overcome years of fear and apathy and take to the streets like the case with Arab streets, they prefer like Fela sang in Sorrows, Tears & Blood: “I no want die! Papa dey for house! I want enjoy!” Corruption the cancer that is devouring the African society and impedes the continent’s progress, has been lavishly treated in all his works particularly Fela’s denunciation of African leadership and their complicity in the wide-spread. Majority of the finger-pointing of the politico-financial corruptions are directed at those persons in charge of politics on the African continent, but from all indications this bad decease emanated from the Western Hemisphere and today it has spread almost everywhere in the world becoming a contemporary universal reality. In view of the recurrent nature of corruption, one can ask where the African money from corruption banked. The answer is no far fetched – Europe and some parts of the Western Hemisphere.
Without being Felacentric as some critics say because of my regular reference to his songs, apart from Cheikh Anta Diop, Dr. Ivan Van Sertima, and Theophile Obenga, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti is also another personage that have contributed immensely towards African awareness in the last half of the 20th Century and beginning of the 21st Century. Using music as a weapon in his special musical creation called afrobeat, Fela invited Africans and Diaspora Africans to be proud of their African heritage as he sang in Blackman’s Cry. A very important point to note here is that every song of Fela Anikulapo-Kuti from his Africa 70 to Egypt 80 works, are narratives of Nigeria’s contemporary history. From his 1973 Confusion, with his Pan-African solution - critical of what transpires as government on the continent, to his Army Arrangement – a narrative of how the military institution have high-jacked the people’s clamour for freedom and democracy, all of Fela’s songs are nothing but Nigeria’s contemporary history – an actuality today and tomorrow as everyday is a testimony of all what he sang about. In this gloomy landscape of general demobilization and inaction characterizing African officials, it is important to put into context Fela’s songs and how he sang yesterday about today and tomorrow to come.
Like Fela sang in Confusion Break Bone (CBB): “If I say food no dey! Na old news be that! If I sing say water no dey! Na old news be that! I come sing say inflation! Na old news be that! I come sing say corruption! Na old news be that! I come sing say mismanagement! Na old news be that! I come sing say stealing by government! Na old news be that! The thing wey dey worry me! How these problems come get big head! Which President never steal? Who will solve all these confusion?” Before I translate this piece sung in Pidgin English I would like to make a digression. Fela chose to sing in Pidgin because he felt that it was important to get across to the millions of Nigerian first before moving on to other parts of the continent. Remember that we did not have social networks then like we have today.
Returning to the lyrics of CBB he sang: “If I say there is no food for the people to eat! That is old news! If I say there is no water to drink! That is old news! If I sing about Inflation! That is old news! If I sing about corruption! That is old news! If I sing about mismanagement! That is old news! If I even sing about stealing from government officials! That is old news! What is worrisome in all these is how did these problems become so endemic? Which Nigerian President has never stolen? Who will solve all these confusion?” This is a 1986 song, 27 years after its release has anything changed in the way Nigeria is governed? All the issues raised in today’s blogs and news headlines were issues he sang about in the last three decades.
“Let us ask ourselves what is government” is a quote from another song titled Movement of the People Political Statement 1 (MOP 1) Fela sang: “Let us ask ourselves wetin be government! Government na father of the people! Father must like him son! Son must like him father too! But the things wey dey happen for Africa I will make an explanation! The government wey we get na overseas sense them get! Them no be father, we no be them son! Them be the masters, we be the servant! The government wey we get them be Blackman for them face! The government wey we get them be Whiteman for them yansh!” For those who don’t understand Pidgin English: “Let us ask ourselves what is Government! Government is the father of the people! And as father he would like his son and in return the son would like his father too! But what is happening in Africa, I would like to give an explanation! The government that we have! They have over-sea ways of thinking! They are not our fathers and we not their sons! They are the masters, we their servants! The government we have are Black-men facially, and White-men in their arses! That is why most African leaders have military and the police to protect them.
Again like often underlined on this page, Nigeria’s so-called peaceful transition from military rule to a democratic civilian regime is nothing but an illusion. The army is still very much in control as all the registered political parties are controlled by former army generals. Today they put-on civilian clothes and use religion to create a political base. There is even more talk from some of the leaders of the registered parties of dividing the country – with the North breaking away from the rest of the Nigerian nation. North/South dichotomy talk in Africa is as old as colonialism - the policy that created the military institution. It is nothing but diversion that enabled the colonialist like the ex-generals to continue to divide and rule like Fela sang in Colo-mentality. Where is the opposition in Nigeria’s so-called democracy? Another important issue to note is that there is no point looking for the sponsors of Boko Haram outside the circles of Nigerian Army so-called retired Generals. If the American CIA can find Ben Laden close to Pakistan’s Army Barracks.
If we really are searching for Boko Haram leader - we should start our search in the massive palaces of Nigeria’s ex-Generals. Like I said in my book Fela - Phenomenon & Legacy, all the political parties are controlled by ex-generals and they are using religion to divide and rule - wake-up my fellow country people! Please pass the message!