The US State Department chief scribe, Antony J. Blinken, who is constitutionally referred to as the secretary of state has been parading East and West Africa in recent past with the intent to re-enforce the concepts of American democracy; human rights; rule of law, and security for his audience (Senegalese, Nigerians, and Kenyans). But little did Secretary Blinken know that the US no longer had the usual moral authority on the world stage to lecture Third World countries on the tenets of democracy; rule of law; human rights and security.
Even though, Sec. Blinken is fully aware that the US has erred ill-responsibly on the tenets of democracy, his selected audience (Kenyans, Senegalese, and Nigerians) are no different. They are also notoriously known for their ongoing gross human rights abuses, systemic corruption, and lack of good governance, yet the Secretary chose to wine and dine with them something unusual. This action on the part of the Secretary has compelled some political pundits to advance a few questions: “Does US parade in Africa politically expedient? Does the US want to prove to China that it is back in political business in Africa? Does the US have the moral authority to still lecture Third World countries on the tenets of democracy despite its own shortfall? These embarrassing questions are asked because the US 46th President Trump, a staunch Republican Conservative willfully attempted to overthrow a duly elected government for his own political aggrandizement and greed for power.
Sadly, the US is presently in a damaged control mood on the World stage as she tries vigorously to rekindle the hope, trust, and democratic confidence of all her democratic allies at home and abroad especially African leaders who have been condemned million times by the West for being totally unfit to protect the tenets of democratic rules and good governance. However, Secretary Blinken’s visits (Kenyans, Senegalese, and Nigerians) didn’t scare these notoriously known countries (Kenyans, Senegalese, and Nigerians) from abusing their fellow citizens’ human rights nor promote good governance. In spite of this, Blinken had to bite his tongue to make his host countries very comfortable, probably because of the unstoppable China advancement in Africa.
Interestingly, the US is having sleepless nights because China President XI Jinping had cleverly managed to entrap 32 of the 52 African countries into a huge debt of billions of dollars. China’s import and export bank in 2015 released a total of $62.7 billion to Africa, especially the 32 countries that are currently on China’s life support machines. For example, Blinken’s host countries Kenya, Senegal, and Nigeria are hurting slowly because of China’s huge loan burdens. Kenya was given a loan of $758 billion in April 2021, Nigeria was loaned $3.1 billion; Senegal took a loan of $70 billion, but Senegal Pres. Macky Sall is bleeding with tears in his dining room thinking about how to pay China. Nigeria has been caged. Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta is in a tight basket worrying about how to pay the Chinese’s loan.
Sec. Blinken bilateral budgeting of $2.17 million to Nigeria is not good news for Nigeria. Nigeria was hoping to spend the money to pay off its debt to China, but Sec. Blinken would no doubt frown on such an idea because it would definitely put the secretary in a difficult position back in America because the American financial system doesn’t support such a corrupt initiative.
Furthermore, Sec. Blinken is playing a catchup game with China, but there are multiple bumpy roads ahead of the US. First, the US is not prepared to release any funds without conditions, the Chinese on the other hand are willing to do just that. Second, the US is not too much into the loan business but the Chinese are. The Chinese huge loans are not necessarily based on whether Third World countries are practicing good governance, protection of human rights, and rule of law. President Xi Jinping is not concerned about corruption in Africa. China is after natural resources in exchange for loans and for greedy African countries to confess that they believe in the “One China Policy.” With such a major confession on the part of African countries, they can now dine and wine with President XI Jinping and his Chinese Community Party.
On the contrary, it appears the US is forcing Third World countries to pledge their allegiance to defend the tenets of democracy; upholding good governance; protecting human rights and wage wars on corruption, promotion of security, the practice of transparency and accountability; cultivate the spirit multi-partisan; conduct free and fair elections and protect democratic institutions, civil societies, and free-press. These values are propositionally nonsensical to China Pres. XI Jinping whose eyes are set on Africa’s natural resources in exchange for huge loans whereas US is promoting democratic tenets in Africa in exchange for bilateral agreements. Is democracy truly relevant to Africa or the Chinese loans in exchange for natural resources?