Opinion: The Françafrique countries should question it’s need for France

The last two weeks or recent days the French President Emmanuel Macron have proven how the elites of Paris is disregarding the former colonies, if it is Mali or Algeria. I am sure behind closed doors and within trusted associates the words could be even striking. Because, these words has been said in public and with no proper excuse.

In that regard, when the Head of State of France is saying that. The previous colonies should question the need to be bound by mechanisms and by agreements tied to Paris. Since Paris clearly don’t respect you or honour you.

Françafrique consist of Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad (Tchad), Cameroon, Republic of Congo, Comoros, Central African Republic, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea, Mali, Madagascar, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Togo, and Tunisia. That is lot of counties and huge part of continent. The French are involved also in republics and nations, which they were the colonial power over. However, this here piece about them. Since they have still a significant place and plays a role for the power-balance in these countries.

About the “Colonies Francaises d’Afrique”:

The countries still bound by a monetary union and a common currency, which is Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo, These are all part of West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU). The second monetary union of the CFA Franc are based on these countries: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon. These countries are a part of the Central African Economic and Monetary Union (CAEMC).

The French and some of their allies tried to relaunch it as “Eco” in 2019 and that has gone nowhere. That should say a lot. I doubt that is only happening, because of regime changes. Nevertheless, I don’t expect any serious movement on this matter anytime soon.

We know Benin said it wanted to leave CFA Franc … that hasn’t happened either. Paris and the elites there has a way of keeping everyone under their control.

What would be healthy would be for all heads of state and parliaments, ministries and such evaluate the relations, agreements and ties with it’s former colonial master. Since, as an independent nation it is nothing saying that you should be there forever or have to be mocked on a irregular basis by Heads of State of France. Neither, should the French has trade advantage or mineral extraction agreement, which other nations companies couldn’t have. That could possibly make it more profitable and earn more tax-dollars to the state reserves in any given republic.

It is time for all of them to consider this. Everyone has some sort of ties and this is why they are still indirectly having influence. That is why everytime something happens or in regards to French interests. Things gets tense and you never know when things will pop-off. This is why the Republic’s need to oversee and have a proper oversight of it. It is like this has have never been done.

All mechanism and statutory bodies, which is connected needs also to be looked into. This here will take time and needs to be inquires. There is a need to directly investigate and also see what sort of affects it has had over the years. If there is a beneficial relations or one-sided. Since, there might be some good parts, but a lot of it is a way of the French to never let go.

After everything Macron has done. The Francophone Africa needs to react and not accept this sort of acts. Right now he does this to Algeria and Mali. Who knows when the “wrong” head of state get elected somewhere and he will use his power to stifle them. Even if that was the will of the people and not the will of Paris. That is what is striking here and that is why these republic’s needs to see over everything. We know the French will feel insulted and infuriated. Since they are entitled to it all. However, this wasn’t their to begin with. This isn’t Marseilles or Bordeaux, but it’s Yaounde and Lome. Peace.

UNOWAS: Mahamat ANNADIF reaffirms the mobilization of the United Nations to support Guinea-Bissau in its efforts to consolidate democratic institutions (03.06.2021)

CEDEAO – Communique Final: Session Extraordinaire de la Conférence Des Chefs d’Etat Et De Gouvernement de la CEDEAO (Par Visioconférence, le 23 avril 2020)

CEDEAO: Communique (27.02.2020)

CEDEAO: Communique (21.02.2020)

World Bank working paper reveals astonishing amount of aid money to the African continent going directly into tax havens!

The World Bank working paper named ‘Elite Capture of Foreign Aid – Evidence from Offshore Bank Accounts’, which was finally released yesterday is a devastating read. Not because of the facts in it, but because of the extent of the misuse and theft of aid money. The World Bank are now proving by small samples how much of their loans, grants and funds, which is given by donors to the WB, which happens to be moved to tax havens by the regimes that needs it. That is eating of the plate of the poorest and living lavish on others people’s dime.

Just in the Annex, the truth really comes forward, where it is only a small samples, but showing the distasteful enterprise still. Like from table one. You can see that a certain amount of African countries have taken out huge funds into havens deposits and non-haven deposits.

The report explains this about the table one: “The table shows the 22 countries in our main sample and presents summary statistics for the main variables in our analysis. The sample includes all countries for which annual disbursements from the World Bank are equivalent to at least 2 percent of annual GDP on average. Sample mean is the average of the 22 countries in the sample. Annual WB aid (% of GDP) is annual disbursements from the World Bank as a fraction of annual GDP. Annual ODA aid (% of GDP) is annual Official Development Assistance (ODA) from all sources as a fraction of annual GDP. Haven deposits is foreign deposits held in the 17 countries classified as havens. Non-haven deposits is foreign deposits held in the countries not classified as havens” (World Bank Feb 2020).

Nation Haven (million USD) Non-Haven (million USD)
Burkina Faso 32 88
Burundi 103 19
Eritrea 8 11
Ethiopia 64 155
Ghana 76 446
Guinea-Bissau 8 16
Madagascar 193 232
Malawi 31 82
Mali 27 133
Mauritania 32 150
Mozambique 40 161
Niger 29 79
Rwanda 149 41
Sao Tome and Principe 4 8
Sierra Leone 32 82
Tanzania 145 437
Uganda 73 188
Zambia 117 306

When you add into the A6 Table of the modestly aid-dependent countries. You see yet more African countries, where the money a flowing out of the coffers. Where surely not all aid is going where its supposed too.

The report explains table A6 like this: “The table shows the 24 countries for which annual disbursements from the World Bank are between 1% and 2% of annual GDP on average. is the average of the 24 countries in the sample. Annual WB aid (% of GDP) is annual disbursements from the World Bank as a fraction of annual GDP. Sample mean is the average of the 22 countries in the sample. WB aid disbursements is annual disbursements from the World Bank as a fraction of annual GDP. Annual ODA aid (% of GDP) is annual Official Development Assistance (ODA) from all sources as a fraction of annual GDP. Haven deposits is foreign deposits held in the 17 countries classified as havens. Non-haven deposits is foreign deposits held in the countries not classified as havens” (World Bank Feb 2020).

Nation Haven (million USD) Non-Haven (million USD)
Benin 42 96
Cape Verde 14 20
Central African Republic 18 53
Chad 11 91
Comoros 7 27
Democratic Republic of Congo 910 93
Cote d’Ivoire 387 787
Gambia 24 82
Guinea 54 114
Kenya 1277 1784
Lesotho 11 28
Senegal 253 487
Togo 82 146

Without going into deep technicalities of these operations, neither how the World Bank came through these numbers. We can see there is a staggering amount of funds that disappear and goes missing. Which was supposed to go to development or directly to support the state functions. Which happens to end up in tax-havens, surely by someone closely associated with the state or heads of state. Since, these sorts of amounts couldn’t have left the nations without the approval of the executive or head of state.

We can also clearly see, that some aid is directly feeding the rich and keeping tax-havens alive. Giving them financial stimulus and also covering the expenses of the elites in the respective places. There is certainly a mismanagement and a need for more oversight from the World Bank. But also more mechanisms to stop the misuse of aid. If it is supposed to help and not just create a very vastly elite in the nation in question. Because, with this sort of operations, they have clearly achieved that. Peace.

Extraordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government: Communique (09.02.2020)

Ghana: Declaration by the Government of the Republic of Ghana on the Adoption of the ‘ECO’ by UEMOA (28.12.2019)

Union Economique et Monetaire Ouest Africaine: Communique de Presse de la Session Extraordinaire du Conseil des Ministres de l’Union (27.12.2019)

Opinion: The ECO seems like halfbaked CFA

By my reckoning, the rebranding of Central African Franc (CFA), which was the relic of the colonial French rule in Western African states. During the last few 48 hours, there is news of a new currency, which has implications, but also imperfections.

The ones praising this move is naive. The reason is simple, Emmanuel Macron or the French is still not giving way to power nor influence. They are still having their hand in the cookie jar. They are still involved with the inner-works of the financial sphere of the former colonies. They are maybe stopping the control directly from the National Bank of the French.

This move is to ease the pain of the past, but still the French and the European Union will have their stakes in it. As the pegged currency will be accordingly traded towards the Euro. A Euro, which the French has influence over in the EU. Therefore, the former colonies and the ones accepting this “ECO” Currency are accepting control from Paris and Brussels still.

They are maybe done with the regulations of CFA and the banking system as known today. But the ECO will be measured after the Euro. This is all a condition, that still benefits the former colonizer. If it wouldn’t, he wouldn’t have accepted it. Not like the French wants to loose influence nor the ability to easy trade with former colonizes. Why do you think most of the cars in Tunisia is French and not a random Skoda?

With that in mind, the ECOWAS was not launching this, but Macron was. Therefore, the whole thing seems like ploy to leave one relic behind, hoping people would be so happy that they don’t look into the mechanisms of the new currency. Not like the French would ever drop influence nor their strong hand over Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal & Togo. All of these will still be semi-controlled by Paris.

I have a hard time believing the intent of the French is to give way. No, this is just a shift to extend their power and find new measures to secure it. By remaking the former currency and the monetary union these nations have. Not like they are suddenly creating their own or having 8 separate ones. If they did that, then it might been significant. Where the own national banks, together with Ministry of Finance would make and ensure the safety of own national currency accordingly and necessary for their own Republic.

To remake and rename, only questions the motives behind the move. Other, than trying to clean the dirt of your hands and call it good days work. After years of questioning the currency and the stranglehold of these Republics. By having appointed men in their National Banks and having their gold in Paris.

I lack faith, but I am also very cynical about it. I’m not easily buying into it. I am hopefully wrong. Until the measures, until the mechanisms are all out and the proof of a vital change. It just seems like a small ploy to trigger hope for a difference, when its really just a new name and the same landlord over it. Its still the same farm and the same output, but the master just renamed the land differently. Peace.