The big vegetable syndrome refers to the name given to the close allies of president Mobutu of Congo during his reign (1965-1997). During this time, the president and his friends engaged on a looting spree which finally condemned the people of Congo to extreme unfathomable poverty to present hence their nickname” Les Grosses Legumes”. This phenomenon is what has been experienced in most of our African countries; we need to rise up and fight against it if we tend to change the course of Africa history.
For those willing to stand for change, books of history have some good lessons and caution for us; we need to understand that powerful groups often stand against economic progress and against engines of prosperity; and that economic growth is not just a process of more better machine, and more and better educated people but also transformative and destabilizing process associated with the wide spread creative destruction.
Creative destruction forces should be created and build over a period of time. These creative destructive forces should be grounded on principles that reflect the basic tenet of life; respect and social justice for all. The principles will only be developed if we learn to build trust among common citizens. To this point I am optimistic. I am optimistic that exploiting regimes in most of our countries in the cradle of man are soon going to collapse to pave way for new political and social dispensation.
Yes! We have been crippled by leaders who are after personal aggrandizement. I know we are faced with a challenge of breaking the vicious cycle of poverty; just because those in power are always clever enough to create institution that support and propagate their insatiable hunger from continuous exploitation and accumulation of wealthy.
Therefore, with knowledge of their past dirty tricks; we need to step out, step out armed with the truth and clear intentions; to liberate Africa from this shame. To liberate our mother Africa from the hands of the enemies whose only intentions are to keep us under servitude of poverty. However, as we prepare to do this; we need to be informed of the opposition that we are going to face on the way, this reality should then give us a reason to build a stamina to stand the kind of opposition awaiting us. The words of victor Frankl, the author of man’s search for meaning he who finds a why, can always stand any How, should be our solace as we seek justice in the midst of established crooked system . This is the attitude I seek to encourage you to have.
We should strive towards developing our stamina before we set out to the battle field. The preparation should take more of our time now. Just like athletes spend numerous time on tracks in mountains, we have no otherwise but to set into the field of practice if we have to forge a formidable force against the injustice that we have suffered for a long time.
Our practice, should be a quiet endeavor, we should not commit the mistake Moses in the Old Testament made by killing an Egyptian while he was being mentored in the palace. May be If we ever commit this mistake then we will be forced to run to exile just like Moses did running to the wilderness to be a shepherd ; running away from our countries , abdicating government positions just because we think they are doing evil will derail the process of restoring Africa dignity. Let us be careful and vigilant.
Our ability to postpone gratification of seeing a free Africa is crucial for a long term strategy. I believe this gives us- youth ample time to learn their evil ways while within the palace. For then, we can be in a better position to device ways of countering them.
I agree it is extremely irritating; it is cantankerous to be in a house that parent propagated unimaginable atrocities to fellow men; of which you think is an abomination. However, if you start complaining about and antagonizing them of what they think is ubiquitous and acceptable , they can banish you or become defensive. If this unfortunate incident happens; it will deny you the easiness of carrying out your mission of effecting change. it is easy to fight from within than outside. Let us be patient. They say patience pays.
Fellow youths, we were born in such a time as this for chance to afford us the opportunity to make history. I am aware you feel angry about the insensitivity of leaders who are not ashamed of exploiting your circumstances. I too feel flabbergasted most times when I experience the insensitivity, irresponsibility, fighting, and impotent political rhetoric from our leaders , but I am hopeful that a time is coming-sooner than we think , when, if we stand by the truth and spirit of Ubuntu as Africans ,we will get the opportunity to make things right.
We have an obligation, an obligation of saving the future of our generation. However we need to seek wisdom before we wedge the war against the big vegetation. They have corrupted our systems. Their old boys clubs have deep rooted networks. These networks can be destabilized, but the force to carry out the revolution should be like what happened in Europe “Glorious Revolution”
We need a social revolution, a revolution that will seek to right the institutions that were set to help the few elites in the ruling class to control the people. This eminent social revolution should be based of love equality and social accountability. We need thorough preparation. In the meantime , keep the peace, do only the necessary, until that time that we will be ready with the right tools and weapons to wedge the battle.
When that time will come, we will not be stopped; instead we will take the fight by storm .I believe with the spirit of patriotism, respect for humanity and social justice for all we will win.