African leaders should 'never go to bed' with ex-colonisers - Mkapa

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Harare - Former Tanzanian president Benjamin Mkapa has said that the new crop of African leaders need to be inducted into the founding fathers ideals regarding the continent, the state owned Herald newspaper reported on Thursday.

Mkapa, who ruled in the east African country for a decade, said this while on a week-long visit to Zimbabwe where he has already met with country's only ruler since independence in 1980, President Robert Mugabe, 91.

Mkapa said the emerging African leaders should "shun away" from the "dependence syndrome", adding that they should never "go to bed" with their former colonisers.

"I think first, there is [a] need for the younger generation to be properly inducted into the history of Africa. They should know that there was an armed struggle here and that people lost their lives," Mkapa was quoted saying.

Mkapa lambasted some of the current crop of African leaders, saying they were moving away from the principles of the founding fathers. He accused them of behaving "more and more like their colonisers" in many ways, especially where issues related to culture, politics economics were concerned.

Mkapa's speech echoed Mugabe's sentiments when he launched a book dedicated to Tanzania's founding leader, the late Julius Nyerere, recently.

Mugabe was quoted as saying that the new generation of African leaders should honour the ideals of  the continent's founding fathers, adding that they should honour their legacy.


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