What is with this #LibyaSlave thing trending? By Kehinde Bademosi

What is with this #LibyaSlave thing trending? By Kehinde Bademosi

There’s this infuriating stuff about my African people that makes me want to pluck my pubic hair with bare hands. What is with this #LibyaSlave ...

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There’s this infuriating stuff about my African people that makes me want to pluck my pubic hair with bare hands. What is with this #LibyaSlave thing trending? Are we pretending that our lives were worth more than $400 before this slave auction story started to trend? What exactly are we fighting? That other Africans who buy our people crossing the Mediterranean are doing something strange?

While the West has continued to plow us for their selfish interests, black nations continue to limp on one foot because of our blinding greed. Nothing new at all. We sold our own brothers and sisters into slavery for mirrors and silverware and then threw big parties to celebrate our influences amongst our little tribes and clans. When our rulers died, we buried many innocents people alive with them to keep serving them in yonder. According to Tunde Obadina, director of Africa Business Information Services (AfBIS), Slavery was already a common practice among Sub Saharan Africans long before the involvement of the Arabs, Berbers, and Europeans. According to Tunde, there were three types: those who were slaves through conquest, those who were slaves due to unpaid debts, or those whose parents gave them as slaves to tribal chiefs. Chieftains would barter their slaves to Arab, Berber, Ottoman or European buyers for rum, spices, cloth or other goods. (Tunde Obadina. “Slave trade: a root of contemporary African Crisis.” Africa Business Information Services. Retrieved 19 September 2010.)
The greed is still there today.
The greed that makes just one politician keep an entire state’s budget in a Swiss account for himself and his family, yet we celebrate him as a hero. The greed that keeps our street in the dark and our homes in shambles because our governments would rather have us import electric generators than figure out how to power our cities. The greed that keeps our food rotten on the farms because the roads to our farms are not yet made. Meanwhile, thousands of families cannot afford a meal a day. The greed that sprouts religious centers across our lands where a few manipulate vulnerable populations into ‘unholy’ submissions. These leaders fly private jets while our homegrown air transport services nosedive. And you say we are worth more than $400 in the eyes of our greedy leaders? Our schools have become mortuaries of ideas while our kids in diaspora continue to bag Harvard’s awards. They may not return home with their talents to practice. Whether at home or abroad, our immigrants live in a perpetual slave market. Our doctors and nurses are flying out in droves while our hospitals use candlelights to light the operation rooms. We keep quiet for as long as we benefit from the loots of the land. It’s called GREED, my friend. That’s what we should hashtag.

Our journalists ( the majority of them) have been bought, and our press only regurgitates news that keeps us misinformed. Well, it took a Western media like the CNN to uncover this story that’s been happening right under our nose. So, now it’s time to do what we know how to do best. Hashtag.

I will not hashtag Libya. All of us are living slaves in our countries, and we are not even priced for $400. We are sold and resold for less each day by a few who continue to rule the motherland. Our conscience has a price, and we sell it to the highest bidder. When Africa is ready to talk about a government that works for all irrespective of tribe, religious beliefs, and gender. When we are ready to address our mental slavery cultures and prioritize values for human lives, please pass me the hashtag. Right now, I have no grief to nurse. We’ve been slaves all along, and only waiting for the highest bidders


Mr Bademosi writes from USA. He is a frontline social critic and commentator on Nigeria and Africa. He may be reached by email at kennybrandmuse@gmail.com