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Commentary: Leaders and what they leave behind for the next generation

As I reflect on the wonders of nature, I thought about trees in the forest. I observe that every trees produces fruits not for itself but for people, other animals, insects and birds. In this law of life, there is fountain of lessons to be learned for those who reason.

There are fundamental lessons for human beings in this law of life but specially our African leaders. Large number of African presidents seldom live with question of what they will bequeath for the future generations of their countries.


It is unfortunate but, most of their only wish is that the world will end with them as presidents at the top of their countries and by all means necessary. This irresponsible self-centred mind-sets that many of our African leaders have, is the tap-root of failures in the continent.


This may explain the reason many do not want to leave power even when they have reached the end of their presidential terms and their creative usefulness as leaders.

This strong sense of entitlement without responsibility is certainly a mark of excessive narrowness of minds on the part of our presidents in many African countries.

Thus, instead of developing their countries for all, they set narrow groups that organise political institutions to perpetuate ruthlessly their grips on power, continually creating systems that pits self-interested individuals and groups against one another.


Herewith, this mind-set, any development they attempt to initiate, is done for the single purpose of party political consideration and to entrenched themselves in power.

Hence, our young people are left meandering hopelessly in their countries with very little prospects of better life other than risking their lives through perilous back way journey to any where, but Africa.


For this reason, our hospitals are empty of basic blood bags and much needed ambulances but country overflows with expensive Sport Utility Vehicles “SUVS” with tinted glasses owned by political leaders plying on dusty roads.


The not-producing for future generation syndrome may also explain why we have filthy hospitals with insufficient doctors and nurses, equipment, poor electricity and water supplies.


Hospitals where our mothers untimely die of giving life for the sustainability of our countries, without eyebrows raised by our leaders. The irony is, the same empty hospitals are the very ones they are taken to when they spectacularly fall from grace and get sick, alas.


But instead of opening doors to humane ideas, civilising processes, invest in building human capacity, enhance youths talents, invest on education and transforming their countries with its incalculable resources for the future generations.


These selfish leaders do volte-face on their promises of creating heaven for their degradingly and miserably poverty laden countries.

As a result, when they conspicuously betray the trust of their people, they creatively resort to divide and rule tactics through ethnic entrepreneurships, and succumb to appeals of linguistic and religious divisions to mask their failures. That is why we should resist these failed leaders to sheepishly tempt us in to tribalism and/or anything that will divide us as a country.


These parochial and incompetent leaders are disloyal to almost everyone but themselves. The potential of their budding generation – the future of their countries, lain fallow - under used, but, they do not simply care.


They could have acted as gel to hold their country men and women together, and turn the fortunes of their future generations in to a disciplined, industrious, skilful, prosperous, formidable and productive people.


But no, they are bogged in corruption, incompetence, injustice and paralysing the creative drives of their dynamic people.

Finally, we have no alternative but to change the system. To lead the crusade to change agrarian self defeating selflessness of our leaders, emphasising on the superiority of ideas, ethnical conduct over corruption, immorality and indiscipline in our countries.

It will be only then that our good men and women will have the opportunity to serve our countries fully and well.

Ebrima Scattred Janneh(EB)

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