AFRICA B/MILLIONAIRES CLUB


President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle...

President Obama with president Denis Sassou Nguesso of Congo. Obama taller but Nguesso richer.

Would you like to hear about small African news! Are you sure? Well, I am feeling dandy so let me oblige.

I see two articles in the African section of Yahoo. The first one titled ‘Prominent Nigerian bank CEO sentenced over loan crisis” and the other one is about “Banks in Britain handled millions of pounds for two Nigerian ex-governors accused of corruption

It is a coincidence if both articles are about Nigeria. The reading is small but the amounts are staggering. I am not taking about small change but millions of dollars. The Nigerian Bank CEO sentence is a 6 months jail term.

Bernard Madoff for his panzy scheme received a 150 years sentence and an asset forfeiture of US $170 billions. The guy is 70 years old, so you exactly know where he will die.
Madoff should have embezzled his friend’s money in Nigeria or any African country, there it’s safe and he would be out by now.

In Africa, if you are part of the government or well connected, the harshest sentence is a slap on the wrist. During scolding time, the same business goes on since the whole family is involved.

Justice is only for the poor, try blowing a kiss at a rich person’s goat and you may get the fiercest kick you ever got.
Don’t argue, take the kick. You want to protest in the name of being an animal lover!
Fine, wait a bit; let me predict your future…Here you are …”Latest news … A person guilty of carnal knowledge with a goat ends up in jail. The warden provided a small pillow for comfort and hopes the prisoner does not commit suicide with it… latest news, read all bout it, latest news!”
More or less that what African justice is!

When president Bongo of Gabon died he owned together with his family 39 flats, 70 bank accounts and nine cars in France. This “small” fortune was acquired in France only. So think what the little chap owned in other places. Probably the whole country belongs to him while his people starve.

These guys with their entourage live large. The UN General Assembly is over and I guarantee you that among all the world delegation at least one African country, or one of its member, was among the biggest spender while in NY.
President Denis Sassou Nguesso, of Congo Brazzaville, paid US $200,000 for a short stay in 2006 at the Waldorf Astoria. That’s US $40,000 more than the US $160,000 which Britain gave as humanitarian aid to his country the same year.   Also, he ordered two bottles of champagne at $630 a pop.
I don’t know what they celebrated. I was not invited. Were you?

African culture is communal. It conforms to the meaning of “Republic” attached to most of the name of African countries. In Latin the word Republic means “res publica” or public affair. What belongs to you, belongs to everyone.
African governments live by the same principle but they add in tiny letter at the bottom of the form; private. The tax payer money is the government’s private property.
Oops! You feel gracious and want to list me some exceptions. Sorry, it is the same all over the continent, even in South Africa.
Why do you think Zuma wants to muzzle the media?
Oh! Good! I see a light bulb on top of your head.

You rarely see an African statesman or members of the family on the official list of the richest people in the world.
Well, have you ever heard about the son of Teodoro Nguema Obiang?
His daddy, president of Equatorial Guinea, gave him a job as Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, making $60,000 per year. Not much money but acceptable for an oil rich country with inhabitants under, I mean way under,  the poverty line. Anyway, I am sure daddy added lost of freebies to the salary.
However, I wonder how he stretched that little money to buy in California, through one of his company,  a mansion in Malibu worth $38 millions and a luxury jet for $33 millions. That’s only tokens; I understand the brat is a gadget-lover-play-boy.
The poor block is not even among the “Who and Who” on the millionaires list.
That’s shameful. Aren’t we sad!

I take a walk and buy the Daily Nation, in Kenya, from an aggressive newspaper hawker.
I rarely buy local newspapers, I feel for the excellent journalists, but they all practice self-censorship for survival and to make a living.
Unless certain to get away with a story, they all write tame honky dory tales of “I love you and kiss kiss” for the glorification of the government policies.
The front page of the Daily Nation reads: “Revealed: Fraud and waste of tax billions.” The Kenyan government has an US $860,000 hole which they cannot account for and that’s not including the stolen money meant for the Internally Displaced People (IDP) during the chaos of the last elections.
Thats nothing new, but I will keep the newspapers for the crosswords. I love crosswords.

Elections are another problem in Africa; it is dangerous, volatile, colorful and provides another dimension to the word democracy.
Good and bad politicians, to avoid more death from political chaos, form ugly alliances to make the international community happy.
I call the alliances Multi Alliance Looting (MAL). MAL is a good acronym; it translates to BAD in French.

Anyway, Kenyan government has an US $860,000 hole. The story will make lots of noise, an inquiry will be made, the issue may resurface again then the story will join its twins in the silent twilight zone.

I have a strange feeling that I will get in trouble when I pin point what everyone knows but his afraid to voice.
I live in Africa and the only thing democratic is the word which they put in front of some country’s name.

Going back to Yahoo, I now read “Alarming’ numbers go hungry in 25 countries: report”. I know, you do too, that the poorest country in the world are on the African continent.
Soon you will hear campaigns about giving to Africa; Help Africa, Stop looting Africa, Stop plundering African resources, Africa is sovereign, Stop meddling in Africa, Give to the hungry, No rain no crop, …
That’s enough!
Your philanthropic heart squeezes, you feel for your wallet, take it out and open it …
You hesitate, look at me.
“Good heart, I have a question for you”. How much more money African looters deserve?”

Patrick-Bernard

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2 responses to “AFRICA B/MILLIONAIRES CLUB

  1. Great post. I have a similar site at Millionaires Club if you’re interested.

  2. LOL! Whoah- lurve your writing!
    Someone that does justice to the injustice systems we serve as Africans!

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