Burkina Faso, Republic of Guinea, and the Republic of Mali
In February 2023, the Republics of Burkina Faso, Guinea and Mali commenced discussions towards greater unification of their countries. In the last public statement on this possibility, the Foreign Ministers of these countries affirmed in a 9th February communique that “[our countries] must imperatively move towards federalism”.
WAPO salutes this initiative. We recognise in it the undying spirit of Pan-Africanism that moved the founders of modern Africa even after three generations of neo-colonial repression of such initiatives as the Mali Federation (Mali, Senegal, and Benin) or the “Union of African States” which involved Ghana, Guinea, and Mali and would had incorporated the Democratic Republic of the Congo if the West had not destroyed the latter’s democracy and tortured and murdered its leader Patrice Lumumba. We believe that it is such practical action that can lead us forward to the desired unification of our continent. We must unite to coordinate and plan our production, trade, infrastructure, economic development and defence. We must unite to claim respect for our cultures and civilisation. And We must unite to create the capacity to defend our territories and interests.
WAPO believes that unification of our peoples across European colonial boundaries is necessary for meaningful independence and democratic development. It is something that all Pan-Africanists must fight for. If we fail to make progress, we face either collapse back into direct Western colonial rule or rule by unstable mixtures of semi-feudal and backward religious elites and warlords on the other hand.
The establishment of unity will be internally challenging. Our Peoples have been exploited, repressed, and humiliated so long that many will consider unification an expensive enterprise or a pure distraction. They also have been so bombarded with backward divisive ideas that they may see other African citizens as opponents or competitors rather than brothers and sisters. That is a purely ideological contradiction that must be met with information and education by Pan-Africanists everywhere. The capacity of the leaders of Burkina, Mali, and Guinea to inform, educate, and carry their citizens along in a fundamental reconstitution of their sovereignty, economies, democracies, and security will be far more profoundly democratic than the reinstatement of neo-colonial constitutions and corrupt elites that ECOWAS demands.
WAPO has no illusions about how difficult this struggle ahead is for Pan-Africanism. We will offer principled ideological, political, and process support taking the lead from our comrades in Burkina Faso, Mali, and Guinea so as to give this struggle the greatest chance of success. We will press for a popular process that mobilises all citizens of the three countries based on
anti-imperialist, self-reliant, peaceful development. We will raise awareness and support for the unification process and its prospects within ECOWAS and across the world.
- Reaffirms its support to this initiative;
- Declares that any Federation of States has always been built from a core, a small group of States, confronted with a common adversity, a common challenge; and
- Calls on all the peoples of West Africa to continue the fight for a strong and independent Africa.
ACCRA-February 24, 2023
WAPO is a platform of organizations of pan-Africanist workers, women, youth, culturists, media, and political activists operating in West Africa. Our goal is a politically united African State. Our commitment is to bring the values and principles of Pan-Africanism to bear on subregion’s socioeconomic challenges. And to link West Africa constructively to the rest of Pan-Africanism. We are headquartered in Accra, Ghana. Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org