Association for Free Research and International Cooperation


United States: Has Trump’s protectionist policy made America great?

While running for Barack Obama's succession, Donald Trump campaigned on the principle of "America first", the ideology from which he derived his famous slogan, “Make America Great Again”. With that mythical phrase, the Republican candidate drew crowds and rekindled hope for a once again powerful America on the world stage. The American billionaire's project involved reviving the American economy at a time when countries like China are increasingly imposing their leadership on the world stage. From word to action, the Republican candidate upon election, adopted a protectionist trade policy and isolationism in his foreign policy that caused much fuss even within his own political family. As he seeks to renew his time at the White House, many economists argue that the 45th U.S. president's formula has greatly benefited his country's economy; at least in many areas before the dark chapter of the health crisis caused by COVID-19.
3 April 2020

Accountability and transparency in fighting corruption in Africa

Terrible Diseases and viruses like Ebola, Coronavirus, measles, and cholera have invaded the countries of the world. However, some of these devastating diseases have been contained. For instance, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea were able to contain the Ebola outbreak that struck the three West African Nations some years back. The devastating nature of these diseases can be likened to how corruption has eaten and continues to eat deep into the African continent. The continent has recorded commendable strides in attaining political independence, its economic trajectory is gradually falling into place. Notwithstanding, vices like corruption continue to be an impediment to the continent's total economic transformation. In 2018, the African union commission chair Moussa Faki Mahamat revealed that the African continent loses about fifty billion US dollars a year in illicit financial flows, noting that retaining these huge sums of money in Africa would help finance its development projects.
1 April 2020

COVID-19: The journey, the impact and the quest to save humanity

When the first reports of the corona virus started to come out of China, global health officials and African citizens were very worried about what would happen if the virus started spreading in Africa, where many health systems are already struggling and in sorrowful state. The novel Corona virus has been slow to take root in Sub-Saharan Africa, but after 27 February 2020 the narrative gradually changed after the region experienced its first case in Nigeria. The epidemic continues to disrupt life across the world, almost everything has come to a halt, business, entertainment, social life, religious life The virus has brought the world close to a standstill and panic is taking center stage right from the government level to the poor peasant Africans in the remote of places.
24 March 2020

Juvenile delinquency : a rising social problem in africa

Problems relating to society, or people themselves within a society are considered as Social problems, and Juvenile delinquency stands out historically as one of, if not, the most prominent of the social problems and associated with the field of youths and deviant behaviours. In contemporary time, we find youths ranging below 18 years committing crimes that deserve punishment by law, but are treated otherwise than if they were adults, depending on the society and its laws.
22 March 2020

Import bans: sustainable solutions for the development of African countries?

Faced with the challenges of independence and the complete decolonization of the African continent, there have been many different opinions on the various policies to be implemented in order to achieve full autonomy. Between political transformations and economic reformations, foundations have been laid for a concrete development process specific to the countries of the continent. However, despite all the goodwill of some leaders, such as Thomas Sankara, who nurtured the ambition to see their countries change their status by being part of the intermediate zone termed "emerging countries", it has not been an easy journey. For the most ambitious among them, the severe financial crisis of the 1980s and 1990s did not totally alter the remarkable results of the economic transformation. Opting almost for a more incentive-based policy, centered on the "I consume what I produce" model, many of these countries have turned to local companies to boost development.
20 March 2020

Censorship a better ordeal for africa digital space or not

The internet and social media, in particular, is uniquely designed to promote freedom of speech and expression significantly. The platform in current times is considered as the most important and powerful place for finding information, sharing opinions, as a mode of communication, most people including government officials have used the platform as a direct communication tool in ways previously unheard of, also the platform serves as a powerhouse for keeping data, and all kinds of information. In other words, the internet and social media never forgets anything and holds all information . Massive changes have been initiated into every sector in Africa through the use of the internet and social media. In leadership, politics and governance, health, business, entertainment, etc. There have been continuous transitions into digital formats and presentation which is present in our everyday lives.
18 March 2020

The Debate on free education in Africa

Free public education enables easy access to education for children and young people. However, this policy, which is aimed at improving the literacy rate in Africa, has become a strategic political instrument for most African leaders. They have taken the vulnerability of poor countries as a bait to serve them these projects under the banner of a political campaign project. This is the case of Burundi, where the "elimination of school fees has become a powerful electoral strategy", as explained by Afrique Renouveau. This has also been the case with Malawi. These countries have suddenly put in place an ambitious policy of free education, which has been met with a public outburst, but which does not take into account the criticisms surrounding the bad financing policy. A handful of African countries took the free education route, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi and Mozambique.
16 March 2020

Human Rights violations spark consciousness in the continent

Most African countries continue to witness degrading human rights situations with arbitrary arrests, violent suppression of peaceful protests and killings on the rise in the continent. Several years after the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, the continent is marred by continuous cases of human rights violations. According to the 2017/2018 report by Amnesty International, the human rights landscape has been marked by violent crackdowns on peaceful protesters as well as attacks on political opponents, human rights defenders and civil society organizations. However, the rise in protest and efforts by activists and civil society organizations in recent times indicates that the African people are ready to fight and defend their rights. Citizens in Nigeria, the Gambia, Liberia, and Zimbabwe in the last decades pressured leaders to open up political space and today some countries have been granted the freedom of speech.
13 March 2020

The Agriculture fair: French interference in African politics in the spotlight

The honeymoon between Cameroon and France did not last long after all. While it was believed that relations between the two countries had returned to normalcy, Emmanuel Macron aroused the anger of the Cameroonian authorities at the Agriculture Fair in Paris, by having a discussion on the human rights situation in Cameroon and the crisis in the English-speaking regions of the country with an illegal immigrant. Beyond the discussion, the French leader made some shocking remarks that confirm the Cameroonian public opinion, by boasting of having control over the management of the country's political affairs. The concept of these statements is condemned and questions the basis of relations between France and its former African colonies almost 60 years after independence.
10 March 2020

Thomas Sankara and the boycott of the debts by African countries: Debt Trap

What does the future hold with the massive re-indebtedness of African countries since the plebiscite on the boycott of colonial debt advocated by Thomas Sankara? How should we define the economic future of these African countries that are caught up in the vicious circle of debt? The answer to these questions is simple. Beyond the continuation of a colonial legacy, it is a skillfully orchestrated system that consists in further enslaving poor countries; maintaining them in a situation of partial dependence that would lead one to think that some people decide to take loans and while others only "satisfy" a demand. One realizes that many decades after independence, many countries, especially those that had France as a colonial master; continue to deposit 50% of their foreign exchange reserves in the French treasury. Under the perspective of a "colonial pact", this system, inherited from colonization, lays the foundations for understanding the background of the debts.
8 March 2020

Intra-African trade : A game changer to economic stability

The business of exchanging commodities for value has undeniably been the backbone of prosperity through the ages. In recent years, however, conversations bordering on the importance of intra-African trade has gained prominence following positive forecasts for the business prospects of the continent. Consequently, the African Rising narrative has been carried by the diviners of economic fortunes. Since 2015, the African Union (AU) has been working to improve trade on the continent. In March 2018, in Kigali, these efforts culminated in the landmark agreement called The African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) among 52 out of the 55 African countries. This agreement constituted policies that sought to eliminate tariffs on goods and services and increase liberalization of trade while tackling barriers that will make the agreement ineffective.
6 March 2020

Self-funded Elections in Africa, an Achievable Challenge

The financing of elections is a major challenge faced by many African states. The expenditures for the organization of electoral campaigns range from the printing of ballot papers to the purchase of ballot boxes, ink, voting booths; not to mention the training of staffs, the equipment and ensuring the security of polling stations among others. According to the Independent Network for the Supervision of Elections in Africa (RISELA), "Any election, whether local, regional or national, must lead to three objectives: strengthening national cohesion, respect for the laws of the Republic and consolidation of political dialogue”. In this same light, many argue that elections in a country cannot be the object of foreign funding for the simple reason that the hand that gives is superior to that which receives.
4 March 2020
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