Africa FOR SALE!

Chinese goods have taken over the Africa market

Chinese goods have taken over the Africa market

I cried and laughed as I looked into the mirror this morning to get set for work. I cried as I wondered what the future hold for my children and my children’s children. I laughed because something told me I’m just hallucinating. But read on to draw a line in that oxymoron: The bed sheet and the pillow case I slept on were “Made in China.” The slippers I used to the bathroom, the tooth brush and paste (Colgate), the sponge and soap were all “Made in China” or outside Ghana.

Then the tears in my eyes intensified as I just realized that the cream I was using, the deodorant, the hair cream and even my shaver were all imported. I put on my singlet and under pant they were “Made in China”, my shirt label had “Italy Style” on the label, the jeans I wore was bought in Germany when I attended a course in Berlin in October last year. The water I used to bath, brush my teeth and drink daily has been privatized to a foreign company. As I was about wearing my socks and shoe I prayed “God let this come from Africa.”

Your guess is/was as good as mine – “Made in Italy” for the shoe but the socks had no label (but I’m sure it came from an Asian country). So I finished dressing and realized from head to toe was totally foreign goods with no “Made in Ghana” or “Made in Africa” on me.

Ghana and for that matter Africa can boast of beautiful green forests. But even common tooth picks to clear our teeth of food leftovers and matches sticks to light our lamps are all imported from China.  What again did I leave out?

I guess same applies to most African and third world countries. As governments in affluent countries are stimulating their economies with Stimulus Plans to grease the wheels of their local businesses, Africa is busily importing their goods and rather creating employment for them as our local businesses collapse.

We rush for any “garbage” the outside world imports to us. They come cheap but of low quality. We don’t mind. Our governments go and sign all manner of useless FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS at the detriment of our local industries. What future are we leaving for our children and children’s children?

My fear is that I might wake up one day and see the tag “AFRICA FOR SALE!” and on that label I won’t be surprise to see “China Made” since we have refused to think but allow others to dictate our future.


3 Responses to “Africa FOR SALE!”

  1. 1 ajmunn March 4, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Great post. I share your pain. I have heard you say it is only African’s who can project Africa in the right light. Africa needs the right investment. Aid handled by African governments goes to feeding the government and does not fund the private sector.
    Come on, invest in Africa. By pass the governments, invest in its people.

    • 2 accreporter March 4, 2009 at 6:21 pm

      Thanks Ajmunn, it’s sometimes painful to see the continent nose diving. There must be that political will and discipline to follow laid down rules to get things right. Yes we can! The private sectors should be empowered. Governments in Africa create room for individual investors and intellectuals to carry their rich views across. Africa is the continent with hope but poor management.

  2. 3 Alex March 28, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    Nii, I am very disgruntled about how my mother Ghana is hugely relying on foreign goods from toilet soaps to bedsheets. Its about time Africans and especially Ghanaians wake up to start producing their own goods for themselves. I was recently talking to a Kenyan friend and I told him, before leaving Ghana a few years ago, I never came across a product made from his country or from other African country. The stupidity of an African is to buy the cheapest product hoping it will last forever, which he ends up buying the same product again and again. Cheap product always come with cost in the long term and that is what we are failing to acknowledge. In Malaysia here, the people prefer buying their local products than made in China goods.
    Our leaders are too naive to learn from the past, and I am just scared for my future children whether to raise them in my own mother country or somewhere else….

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