Pan-Africanism, Politics

HISTORY OF AFRICAN LIBERATION DAY

PAN AFRICAN IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATION AND CONVENTION PEOPLE’S PARTY YOUTH LEAGUE PRESENTS THE 55 YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF AFRICAN LIBERATION DAY

 Place: CPP Headquarters at Asylum Down in Accra, Ghana

Date: 25 May 2013, Saturday

Time: from 1:00pm to 4:00pm

 THEME: “BUILDING A MASS SOCIALIST PARTY IS THE ONLY WAY TO TAKE CONTROL OF OUR RESOURCES TO LIBERATE AND UNITE AFRICA!”

 HISTORY OF AFRICAN LIBERATION DAY

 African Liberation Day is one of the mass institutions created by the Pan-African Movement since its organizational form began in 1900 at the First Pan-African Conference in London, England. It was originally called African Freedom Day, founded 15 April 1958 in Accra, Ghana by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s Convention People’s Party government. After Ghana’s independence 6 March 1957, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah organized a Conference of Independent African States (CIAS). At this time in 1958, there were only eight independent African states, which were represented by the governments of Ethiopia, Ghana, Libya, Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt, Liberia, and Sudan. After Pan-African conferences, conventions, and congresses, held abroad by Henry Sylvester Williams and Benito Sylvain, Marcus Garvey, and W.E.B. Dubous respectively, Pan-Africanism had finally taken root in Africa’s soil. The strategy of Pan-Africanist to free Africa from colonialism was to use “Positive Action” campaigns in the form of boycotts, demonstrations, strikes and the vote. When European imperialism prevented these avenues to achieve national independence, the African masses began to use Positive Action in the form of armed struggle for national liberation in Algeria, Kenya, Mozambique, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Zimbabwe, Namibia, and Azania (South Africa).

 

Foreseeing these two types of strategies of “Positive Action” unfolding on the African continent, the eight countries that participated in the CIAS of 1958, decided to institutionalize the liberation process to measure the freedom and resistance of African people against European imperialism every year. Therefore they proclaimed the:

 15th April should be named African Freedom Day, to mark each year the onward progress of the liberation movement, and to symbolize the determination of people of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation.

 The Eight African countries at the founding of Africa Freedom Day understood that only a unified and liberated Africa could free all Africans. Kwame Nkrumah in his welcoming address at the Conference of Independent African States said:

Today we are one. If in the past the Sahara divided us, now it unites us. And an injury to one is an injury to all of us. From this conference must go out a new message. Hands off Africa! Africa must be free!

 From this point onward, Africa Freedom Day was held throughout Africa and the world. In 1963 Kwame Nkrumah wrote a book, Africa Must Unite, in which he made a case for Africa’s total liberation and unification. It was published just before the Conference of Heads of States and Governments held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on May 22-25, 1963 as a prelude for setting up an All-African Union Government to end the various power blocs (Casablanca and Monrovia groups) and divisions among African states.

 On that occasion 31 independent African states, more than 1,100 people and 21 supporters attended the conference. All 31 Heads of States signed a Charter to bring into existence the Organization of African Unity (OAU) on the 25th of May and declared in African Liberation Day (ALD) – which is also celebrated throughout the world.

 This 25th of May marks the 55th anniversary of African Liberation Day, and the renamed OAU, in 2002, African Union’s (AU) 50th anniversary. The African Heads of States changed African Liberation Day to Africa Day and declared the day a continental holiday. Symbolically they recognized the correctness of President Kwame Nkrumah’s and the Convention People’s Party’s ideas, on the one hand, by placing his statue in front of the AU headquarters in Ethiopia. On the other hand, the African Heads of States left liberation out of the day and government out of the AU’s name, in rejecting Kwame Nkrumah’s ideas, because of their indigenous bourgeoisie class interest. From the accumulated sum of money stolen out of the pockets of the African masses, the African Heads of States think they’re already liberated, and because they have united as a class with foreign European capitalist and governments, there is no need for Africa to have a Union Government. By refusing to accept or acknowledge another of Kwame Nkrumah’s ideas, Class Struggle In Africa, the African Heads of States closed the space for socialism and opened the space for neo-colonialism in Africa. This retains the vast majority of Africa’s resources in the hands of the European capitalist class. Therefore it is important to acknowledge ALD as anti-capitalist, anti-neo-colonialist, anti-imperialist and anti-zionist, and thus, as an ongoing process that continues every day until all 54 countries in Africa form an All-African Union Socialist Government.

 POSITIVE ACTION FOR ECONOMIC INDEPENDENCE

 When President Kwame Nkrumah stated, “seek ye first thy political kingdom and all else shall be added on to it.” Many African leaders mistakenly believed Africa’s political independence should go no further than the micro-nationalist states which were inherited as a result of the artificial borders drawn by the European imperialists powers at the Berlin Conference of 1884-85, that imposed classical colonialism throughout the length and breath of Africa. However, the political kingdom, in contrast, that Kwame Nkrumah was referring to was a United Socialist Africa. Further, to consolidate the political kingdom so as to thwart neo-colonialism, he stated, “political independence without economic independence is meaningless. Hence also the struggle for Africa’s economic emancipation.” Voice from Conakry, pg. 66.

 Having great vision, Kwame Nkrumah foresaw that Positive Action was transforming itself constantly by moving from non-violent political strategies and tactics, armed struggle for national liberation (guerilla warfare) to taking control of Africa’s resources (economically). Positive Action would also be defined as “the sum total of those forces seeking social justice in terms of the destruction of oligarchic exploitation and oppression.” Consciencism, pg. 99. Hence, “destruction of oligarchic exploitation” infers socialism as the only way to seek social justice for the redistribution of Africa’s resources, equally, for ownership and control by the African working masses.

 To highlight the necessity for ownership and control of Africa’s resources by the working masses, Kwame Nkrumah evaluates the continent’s potential and exploitative advantage European capitalism has in taking Africa’s resources. Kwame Nkrumah states:

 Our continent is probably the richest in the world for minerals and industrial and agriculturally exceeds all the others in potential hydro electrical power, which some experts assess as 42 percent of the worlds total. What need is there for us to remain hewers of wood and drawers of water for the capitalist industrialized areas of the world…yet all stock exchanges in the world are pre-occupied with Africa’s gold, diamonds, uranium, platinum, copper and iron ores. Our capital flows out in streams to irrigate the whole system of western [capitalist] economy. Fifty two percent of the gold in Fort Knox at this moment, where USA stores its bullion, is believed to have originated from our shores. Africa provides more than 60 percent of the world’s gold. The basic economic might of foreign powers – come from our continent. Revolutionary Path, pg. 236-237

 Today Africa is first or second in quantity of the world reserves in bauxite, cobalt, industrial diamonds, coltan, phosphate rock, platinum, titanium, zirconium, and gold. The following are the mineral resources, in percentage, that Africa provides for the world.

 Manganese 39% aluminum 10% cobalt 57% iron ore 4% zinc 2%

 Bauxite 9% copper 16% steel 2% cement 4% chromite 44%

gold 60% lead 3% diamond 46% platinum 62% coal 10%

 nickel 47% petroleum 13% uranium 16% coltan 64% tantalum 10% graphite 2%

 Africa accounts for about 35% of the worlds mineral resources. Some other resources mined in Africa include niobium, silver, timber, rare earth elements, rutile, diatome, tin, tungsten, lithium, cadium, vanadium, and antimony. It is abvious that with the above named resources, Africa, being the second largest continent in the world, with over 1 billion people, if united, can produce any type of machinery, industrial technology, industries, manufacture any product on earth, develop nuclear capability and to engender all forms of energy on the planet for its modernization in one generation, in order to lift the great multitudes of African people out of poverty.

The working masses of African people organized with the proper political education and consciousness can defeat neo-colonialism and the indigenous bourgeoisie class in Africa who are giving away our resources and our sovereignty for a mess of pottage. Kwame Nkrumah defined neo-colonialism as “the state which is subject to it is, in theory, independent and has all the outward trappings of international sovereignty. In reality its economic system and thus its political policy is directed from outside.” Neo-Colonialism the Last Stage of Imperialism, pg. IX. With the exception of Zimbabwe under the leadership of Zanu-PF and President Robert Mugabe, who demand Africans have ownership of all Zimbabwean land and majority share of the country’s resources (Indigenization and Economic Empowerment) Africa’s 53 other countries are under neo-colonialism, and thus their sovereignty is questionable. It’s only the working masses organized in a socialist Party that can solve the problem of taking control and ownership of Africa’s resources.

 NKURMAH CALLS FOR SOCIALISM AND A MASS PARTY

 The Convention People’s Party is the only Political Party in Africa that states in it’s constitution that its “ideology is Nkrumahism based on scientific socialism” and is vying for political power; seeking to implement Kwame Nkrumah’s mandate to take control of our resources with the aims and objectives “to offer Ghanaians a government based on Nkrumahist principles” and “to work relentlessly for political and economic unity of Africa…” It was no accident that under Kwame Nkrumah’s socialist CPP government Ghana had the highest living standard in Africa (the same as Qathafi’s Socialist Libyan Jamahiriya); it had control over 65% of the countries resources (the Jamahiriya had control of over 90% of its oil); education was free, there was no unemployment, and there were over 300 industries and about 130 state farms (under Qathafi’s Socialist Jamahiriya education was free, Africans from most parts of Africa were working in Libya, and at the age of adulthood all Libyans were given a house). Nkrumah’s CPP government developed hydro-electric energy and was on the verge of developing nuclear energy to fuel the modern industrial development before the illegal overthrow of 24th February 1966.

 Socialism develops countries at a much more rapid rate on a humanist scale than the exploitative machinations of capitalism and neo-colonialism. Nkrumahism, as an independent ideology, coming from African culture and history, with principles of humanism, egalitarianism, and collectivism, is the guide toward socialism and Pan-Africanism as objectives.

 In contrast to capitalist states such as the US, Britain, and France that took 400 and 500 years to develop based on slavery, colonialism, an ideology of white supremacy, and exploitation, the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, with a socialist economic system, achieved industrial and military strength on par with capitalist states from 1917-1980 in less than63 for the United Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and 35 for Eastern Europe – albeit they betrayed the principles of socialism, their economies rest upon the foundation of socialism. China, based on a socialist revolution, brought about by Mao Tse Tung and the Communist Party, has the US in debt $3 trillion. China is the second largest economy in the world. It has the largest industrial capacity in the world; out produces the US in iron ore, 20 times more, which is a measure of industrial strength, (China produces 1 billion tones of iron ore a year to the US 50,000,000 tones of iron ore a year) and has a foreign reserve currency of $3.3 trillion. The US $16 trillion debt and its debt to China are considered a security threat because if they dump US treasury bills it will destroy America’s economy – these achievements by China all occurred in 64 years.

 Before the socialist revolutions in China and Russia, they were basically feudal backward societies, and now they have reached a level of economic parity with the US, Britain, and France without enslaving and colonizing other nations.

North Korea is a socialist country whose Head of State is 30 years old – Kim Jong Un – also Head of the Workers Party of Korea. They defeated the US in the Korean War of 1954, and the north Koreans, consisting of a population of just 22 million, have built their country as an economic giant by relying on their national defense power with nuclear weapons forming its pivot. This is their treasured sword of defense of sovereignty and forms the basis of their economy. With a strong socialist economy and an emphasis of a military first policy, they are able to safeguard the Korean People’s dignity by currently preventing the US from trying to provoke a war so as to ravage their country for resources.

 Venezuela under Hugo Chavez in just 14 years transformed the Venezuelan economy with the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (USPV). He nationalized the oil sector, which makes 85.3% of Venezuela’s wealth and provided financial aid and medical aid to other Latin American countries. Hugo Chavez USPV initiated the Bank of the South with other Latin American countries and developed its own currency, the Sucre, to distance themselves from the IMF and World Bank. Poverty rates fell from 48.61% down to 29.5% and extreme poverty rates fell 78% while there was an increase in health care and education. Malnutrition rates fell by 50% under Hugo Chavez and the USPV, and they created 16,000 supermarkets to reduce the cost of food 40% lower than private stores. The USPV instituted state funded free health care and free education for the people and constructed thousands of free medical services for the poor, enacted housing subsidies, and carried out an education campaign that made 1 million Venezuelans literate. In a show of solidarity with Cuba, Venezuela provides 96,000 barrels of oil per day in exchange for 40,000 Cuban doctors and educators.

Socialist Cuba has the best medical care in the world. Cuba’s life expectancy is higher than the US – 78 years in comparison to 77 years. Health care and hospital care is free for all Cubans. Cuba has an infant mortality rate of 5 per 1000 live births as compared to 6 per 1000 in the US. Cuba has 627 physicians and 94 dentists per 100,000 populations as compared to 225 physicians and 54 dentists per 100,000 in the US. In Cuba education is free from KG through University under socialism and Fidel Castro, Cuba sent over 30,000 troops in 1975 to support Angola’s Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) against an invasion by the white racist illegal settler colonial apartheid regime of South Africa backed by the US, NATO and world imperialism. South Africa was defeated at the battle of Cuito Cuanavale by the MPLA and the Cubans which led to Namibia’s independence and the African National Congress ascending to political power in South Africa; ousting the illegal white settler colonial racist regime politically.

 The only way the aforementioned countries have been able to function at such a high level for human development, is that they have applied Positive Action in the economic sector of society and have control of their resources under socialism, which makes them independent sovereign nations – economically and politically. Thus Kwame Nkrumah states, “I have also pointed out that political independence could hardly be maintained without economic freedom and independence.” Voice from Conakry, pg. 49. This is the true meaning of African liberation (Pan-Africanism) and sovereign Union of African Socialist States.

 MASS PARTY POSITIVE ACTION IS PAN-AFRICANISM

 Kwame Nkrumah states, “…it is necessary for Positive Action to be backed by a mass party and qualitiatively to improve this mass so that by education an increase in its degree of consciousness, its aptitude for Positive Action becomes heightened…this is why the Convention People’s Party of Ghana developed from an early stage its education wing, workers wing, farmers wing, youth wing, women’s wing, etc. In this way, the people received constant political education, their self-awareness was increased and such a self-image was formed as ruthlessly excluded colonialism in all its guises. It is also in the backing of millions of members and supporters united by a common radical purpose, that the revolutionary character of the Convention People’s Party consists…it’s mass and national support made it possible to think in realistic terms of instituting change of a fundamental nature [on a national and continental scale].” Consciencism, pg. 100

 Positive Action then becomes the education and critical organization of Ghanaians into the CPP as a mass Party to wage class struggle against the indigenous bourgeoisie to take ownership and control of Ghana’s resources under socialism, so as to expand to unite and liberate the entire African continent. In turn, this will destroy neo-colonialism, and restore Ghana’s true sovereignty and fulfill the aspirations for freedom of Africans everywhere. The obstacle in the path of these objectives is the indigenous bourgeois political wing represented by the NDC and NPP who are neo-colonialist parties that come from the same ideological womb of military dictatorship – the NLC. The Danquah-Busia tradition (UGCC,NLM,UP,PP,NPP) after throwing bombs at Kwame Nkrumah’s CPP democratically elected government, was only able to come to power as a result of an illegal overthrow and counter-revolutionary rebellion, in 1966. J.J. Rawlings joined the military in 1967 and became a military officer under the NLC, learning from them and every subsequent neo-colonial reactionary military and civilian regime, until he staged a coup with the AFRC and indemnified the illegal counter-revolutionary rebellion of the NLC in the 1979 constitution; the same as Busia (PP) in the 1969 constitution. The PNDC under Rawlings came back to power with an illegal coup that brought the NDC to power, and again constructed a 1992 constitution that also indemnified the NLC, abrogated the 1960 constitution which made the CPP, prevented their legal and democratic right to ascend to political power based on a 1964 referendum won with 99% yes vote, made Kwame Nkrumah illegal as the constitutional Head of State of Ghana, and outlawed the CPP, socialism, Pan-Africanism, and Powers of the People.

 Both the NDC and NPP believe in constitutionally, “the pronounced role of the private sector in the economy” [capitalism] “the property and resources of the republic of Ghana being vested in the President,” and the “laws in Ghana comprising of,…before coming in into force of the 1992 constitution…any act [or] decree…issued or made before that date [of the 1992 constitution] which means NLC decrees that haven’t been repealed but made illegal to communicate with Nkrumah, keeps Kotoka’s name on our airport as a hero are law, and in summary are the component parts of neo-colonialism. The evidence of the NDC adherence to neo-colonialism is the arrest of CPP youth along with hundreds of demonstrators on behalf of the US government on Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah’s 102nd birthday, Qathafi Victory March, 21st September 2011, violating the constitutional rights of Ghanaians, in support of Al Qaeda NTC terrorist mercenaries on behalf of US and British imperialism that has control of over 90% of Ghana’s oil and gold and other resources; at the expense of Qathafi’s democratic Socialist Jamahiriya (Era of the Masses) Pan-Africanist government. This is why we must see ourselves as one; north, south, east and west and control Africa as Kwame Nkrumah stated in 1958, and not let US imperialism divide us. There are eight military agreements that both the NDC and NPP with US Africom, which includes the US having a military base at Ghana’s airforce base, called an Exercise Reception Facility, to protect it’s vested interest and investment in Ghana. The NDC and NPP voted themselves a salary of GH86,000 a year with their housing allowance of GH50,000 a year and ex-gratia of GH200,000, over the course of four years they will receive GH148,000 – not including their car, driver, mobitel use, water, gas, electricity and free petrol – and bribes not accounted for. This is in contrast to a minimum wage worker’s salary of GH1075 per year and the per capita income of a Ghanaian worker of GH3200, which is a clear manifestation of the NDC and NPP being apart of the indigenous bourgeoisie class in a country that is declared Heavily Indebted and Poor (HIPC). They are elitist, corrupt and insensitive to the needs of the people.

 The people do not participate in decision making with regards to Ghana’s resources, while the PNDC/NDC have indemnified criminals that have illegally overthrew governments, stolen the people’s property, made military decrees law, and virtually impossible for courts or the parliament to change these; enshrined them in the constitution with full compliance of the NPP. This suggests the NDC and NPP are anti-democratic neo-colonialist parties prone to give away 90% of Ghana’s resources to the European capitalist class, while simultaneously raising taxes and petrol prices high at the detriment of the working masses. After four years of sitting in, most cases, darkness without electricity, having to walk several kilometers for water, high youth unemployment, high school fees, no housing and bad roads. These same neo-colonialist parties ask for the masses to vote for them into power based on democracy.

 Kwame Nkrumah states, “…since control of the modern state is linked up with the control of the means of production [resources] and distribution, true democracy can only be said to exist when these have passed into the hands of the people. For then the people exercise control of the society through their will as expressed in the direct consultation between government and them. This must surely provide the most concrete and clearest operation of true democracy.” Africa Must Unite, pg. 129

With this change in concept of democracy the people can therefore build a mass socialist party Positive Action and restore their sovereignty and move at an accelerated rate toward taking control and ownership of their resources and Pan-Africanism (the total freedom and liberation of Africa under an All African Union Socialist Government) – the essence of African Liberation Day. There is victory for us!

 

Sekou Nkrumah

Chairman

Pan-African Improvement Organization

panafrimprv@yahoo.com

Via Akili Secka.

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