Monday, 16 May 2016

David Cameron's 'Corrupt' Countries Remarks

The British Prime Minister, David Cameron reportedly made the remarks in a conversation with the Queen. He was caught on camera and a spokesperson told the press that Mr Cameron was aware. That make it clearest that the British Prime Minister had thought well of it previously. It is all about this week's anti-corruption summit in London. According to the report, Mr Cameron said substantively we have got some leaders of some fantastically corrupt countries coming to Britain. Nigeria and Afghanistan, possible the two most corrupt countries in the world. Next the responses said he apologized to the Queen for the remarks but the same spokesman said that the Presidents of Nigeria and Afghanistan had ‘acknowledged the scale of the corruption challenge they face in their countries.’ The latter is an obvious diplomatic fudge to blunt the British Prime Minister's insult on the two countries.

First, the error, No country is corrupt. It could be some people in any particular country that would be corrupt, if proven. That is why the sweeping label on countries in that charge is false. It becomes rude where Prime Minister Cameron is hosting the leaders he knows among clean and unclean for a summit he had said in advance that he and them will push the fight against corruption to the top of the international agenda where it belongs. Externally, that is diplomatically, the one word description for Mr. Cameron is he has been indiscreet. However, given the other pertinent consideration that he fully know what he had planned to say, nullifies indiscretion for other implications including racist, a most unpleasant stuff from a leader of a party whose past government had been booted out of office partly for holding retrograde views on race. An inference to why he only apologized to the queen is regrettably an uncomforting but compelling pointer. By some related history Conservative and Labor governments in Britain had been sleaze or corrupt-prone and similarly had been British cabinet Ministers and members of Parliament in which instance it is common knowledge that a British MP would survive only on the extra cash. That is bribery. There are too many instances of corruption. British governments dating back form Suez through Profumo via political party funding payment of the Chinese Company's access to contract scandal that listed Jack Straw and Malcolm Riff-kind, both of whom had been British Foreign Secretaries. The record across Africa and developing countries is full with British companies involved in corruption.

At the time of Abbot Pharmaceutical scandal here in Ghana, late 60s and after into early 70s of Col Kutu Acheampong's YENTUA, we won't pay era there were cases of the same. Whereas those would indicate that the British Prime Minister, David Cameron has a dim recollection of his ancestry history, a brief example with reference to say that the British have a lot to answer for using the brown envelop alongside alcohol for access to African traditional authorities and usurp their power as part of subjugating their people into colonial rule. All that is to rebut Prime Minister Cameron to remember you do not unplug termites standing in a queue of them. However it is at the same time right to acknowledge that he means good in his effort put into his words to tackle corruption which he suggests has for too long been a taboo head-on. It is worthwhile for the world and he might make history, not for himself and or Britain in Europe which is uncertain now but his own to join with former US President George Bush internationalizing the war against terrorism and Tony Blair, his Labour Predecessor who declared describing the state of poverty in Africa as scar on the consciences of the developed countries who like him would always like to point to developing countries as corrupt though corruption, by definition is infinitely universal and ancient all countries and all cultures.

And such is the fact stubbornly stuck at the bottom of impediments stopping the resolution of corruption everywhere neither just Nigeria nor Afghanistan as the British Prime Minister Cameron would have it.

BY PROF NANA ESSILFIE-CONDUAH, A POLITICAL HISTORIAN AND CHAIR OF JOURNALISM AT THE AFRICAN UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATIONS IN ACCRA.

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