Why Africa’s Ideal System Is Misguided In Copying The West Instead Of China

africa city
Credit: Iwaria

By Emmanuel Nafiu

The forceful subjugation of Africa ended in the introduction of the foreign political concepts of Democracy and Liberalism. In most cases, these ideologies failed to offer a seamless pragmatism to peculiar details of Africans. That is Africa’s historic structures and the demographic level of ‘know-how’. It can be argued that since the introduction of these foreign concepts that eroded Africa of a self-directed and innately begotten governance, Africa has been retrogressive in the development of every phase. To this end, an attempt to identify Chinese growth from a third world nation to a superpower is suitable to exemplify Africa’s path towards attaining similar progress. 

The Adoption Of Ideologies In Africa And China

Like China,  Africa needs a paradigmatic model of a collective disposition to pragmatism. This could look like ‘Whatever works for the common good’ and not a fundamentally principled ideology detailing the most efficient or effective. Liberalism and communism appear radically distinctive in a cursory glance due perhaps to a latent effect of brainwashing. In a retrospective look, they are similar utilitarian movements geared to ensuring an ideal coexistence but founded on extremist principles. Communism was verifiable in human history but was deemed obsolete as humans recognized a ‘sanctity’ about their existence, artfully constructing the word ‘rights’, which in communism was interpreted differently.

In this amphitheatre was Africa, a lost continent with an artificial identity being deceptively lured and ingeniously compartmentalised. Its perception was absurdly woven to cast an antithetical look on itself. This included the personality, values, tradition, governance, and practically everything Africa initially represented. It must be noted that Communism and Liberalism at that point were wrestled by two countries of exposure to Western education with a highly informed populace. Africa was however not. China, a monstrously populated country, was also led credulously into a needless ideological scuffle. Marxism/Leninism incorporated into ‘Maoism’ saw a country that trudged its populace into servility and forced labor.

Concurrently, Africa was dragged into a capitalist system that would provide a platform for the successful transitioning into Liberalism and Democracy. Since 1885, when it was territorially divided, Africa became compressed in a bubble. The political classes form a socialist arrangement with a faux de pas democracy, thriving on the intellectually impotent populace and an artful deception, which unfortunately the West accentuated. China, on the other hand, saw an ideologically revivalist approach from Deng Xiaoping. Pragmatism, at the expense of idealism, developed the Chinese economy to the second largest in the world in the space of three decades. 

Can Africa Succeed With Foreign Ideologies

The formerly recognized socialist China became immersed into both a state-sponsored and non-state-sponsored economy, with the former contributing 11 trillion Yuan. The Asiatic giant outpaced Japan, working at an interface between socialism and capitalism, idealism and realism.

In the turn of events, Africa, a continent with a roughly similar population to China, is admittedly in bondage. It is necessary to add that most African countries’ predicaments are bedeviled with an inflicted dilemma. One that reeks of an indirect effect of psychological perception and a political class draped with characters pathologically credulous to illusory beliefs. This is somewhat like the Maos and the 20th Century Chinese socialist Party.

Nigeria, the most populous Black country, with the potentialities of surpassing China’s demography in 2100, aptly typifies a paradigmatic structure of rote application and modelling of Western government. When Deng Xiaoping detected a structural fault in China’s political and economic system, he embraced a policy, fusing Capitalists mechanisms, to enable a socialists end product. In the 1990s, China’s resurgence in the world economy testifies to the sporadic awakening of millennials technopreneurs, like Alibaba, Shenzhen. In 2020, Chinese entrepreneurs are compared to Silicon Valley in attempts to manufacturing similar products.

How Ideologies Influence Africa-China Relations

With an obsessive economic culture of importation, the Chinese turned a meteoric lender to Nigeria, a country with vast human and resource abundance, like China, with over $17.3 trillion in debt. In comparison, China recognized the significance of ‘Kaig fa’ (open up) and the ideological fusion of capitalism and communism, with a centralized, autocratic government. In contrast, Nigeria, as in many other African countries, continues with a misplaced system, for an idiosyncratically different populace, by a defective and corrupt political class.

This is, however, not to be intently one-sided. China does have a human rights concern and their Internet access is restricted for structurally deemed appropriate sanctions. They have a President potentially working till death. But this and many other things that are classified as ‘negatives’ in Liberalism ensured China’s blossoming economy. In particular, it provided a sense of chartering China’s paths domestically without an external caricature system. It is now prime time that Africa employs a means of addressing inherent flaws via internally defined apparatuses and not through perpetual cloning of Western legacies.

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