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African Solutions for African Problems

08 May 2014, 10:09

Even with our elections, or maybe because of them and the human rights awareness they emphasize so clearly, the ongoing horror story of the abduction of the Nigerian schoolgirls stands out in glaring contrast. This appalling situation is an example of how not to look after the citizens of a country, and their human rights.

It has been many weeks since the girls were abducted, very little has been heard from the abductors about their fate, and still uncertainty prevails.

The little that has emerged clearly shows the powerlessness of the local authorities, and reminded me of the rallying cry of our former president Thabo Mbeki, talking about Africa and the African Union. ‘African Solutions to African Problems’. Right. So where are those solutions? How many weeks has it been now?

Calls for help have been – finally – going out to Western countries, and we can all only hope, a little desperately by now, that those girls are safe. How they have been treated is open to guesswork, given firstly that they are female and quite honestly females in war zones, particularly in Africa, are never  treated well. Then of course there is the one contact from their abductors stating that they will seize more girls – and they have – and will use them as slaves.

Since when, now, in 2014, have people become property? No I am not talking about any cultural practices, but purely and simply slavery . Again.

So while the West is contemplating sending drones into the area to find the girls, the African Union simply drones on.

What have we become when human lives, children's lives, become so unimportant?  Heartbreaking. 

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