Wade proposes special plan for the Diaspora

Durban- South Africa (PANA) -- Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade on Saturday suggested the development of "a special plan" aimed at "correcting the numerous injustices which Blacks of the Diaspora are still victims of".
The plan, which will be complementary to the New African Initiative, conceived at continental level and within the framework of the African Union, will thus provide a link between Africa and its sons and daughters scattered worldwide by the vicissitudes of history, Wade said in an address at the World Conference against racism in Durban.
He explained that such a plan would make it possible "to examine, on a case by case basis and, if need be, serve as compensation for the injustices to which Blacks of the Diaspora have been subjected.
He added that Blacks continue to heavily pay for those injustices through various forms of discriminations and marginalisation even in their own countries".
On claims of compensations for the slave trade by the African group at this conference, Wade reiterated his total opposition "to any such decision in favour of Africa".
"Indeed, the slave trade is a real crime against humanity which no one denies.
But we have to accept that the mere fact that the descendants of slave traders regret it will not bring us much", he pointed out.
"However, we have a duty to remember and this can be done only by setting up research institutions on our own history, the construction of steles and monuments, making films narrating the itinerary of our heroes, opening all the archives and making them accessible to all and finally, building cultural bridges to encourage the free flow of exchanges between Africa and its Diaspora scattered throughout the world", he said.
Wade leader cautioned that the issue of compensation should not continue to be seen in global terms, warning that doing so would be "an error".
"This issue should not either divide Africa and its sons and daughters of the Diaspora and thus become an impediment at this third World Conference Against Racism," he implored participants at the meeting.
"The problem is simply not well presented, since we are all aware that the consequences of the slave trade are not the same everywhere," he added.
Based on that reasoning, Wade recommended that henceforth the Durban conference, the need has arisen to "come up with means of a massive action for Blacks of the Diaspora in collaboration with countries and regions where they reside".
Focussing on the African continent, Wade advised that its problems no longer be seen in terms of opposition between Blacks and Whites.
As the third millennium is ushered in, a new humanity is about to emerge and our continent should bring in its contribution to avoid being left behind", he further cautioned.
"The black people's genius enabled them to resist all the ordeals that they were subjected to by history and continue to face up to all these hostilities.
" "And this proves that with the New African Initiative, which the continent has been provided with, Africa can perfectly overcome the handicaps inherited from its past without begging and even rise to the level of all the other nations of the world," Wade emphasised.

01 september 2001 18:05:00




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