Unlocking Africa’s Economic Heart

John W. Forje


In spite of its resources potential, Africa remains the least developed continent on Planet Earth. The paper props into issues promoting or inhibiting the sustainable transformation of the region. It does so by critically unleashing fundamental issues delaying its transformation nexus. The geo-construct of these landlocked states calls for specially designed economic approach to respond to a set of socio-political and economic developments on the continent for over 500 years. European colonialism influenced the pattern of governance of African countries and they continue to do so in several of these states. Colonialism established ruling hierarchies and entrenched forms of poor citizenship which were both blatant (as under apartheid), but also subtle (as in forms of Orientals). Colonialism also produced ways of knowing and meaning-making, which imposed particular forms of reasoning and, at the same time, marginalized or silenced alternative ways of understanding the world. Western colonialist domination imposed an artificial backwardness on African countries and her people. It caused both an abnormal stagnation of cultural development and even cultural retrogressions. The effects of these western-centred influences on developing nations have been a ‘set of facts’. These ‘facts’ are widely employed as evidence that purportedly proves certain delusions – Africa is poor because it is poor to begin with. Therefore, the paper has two objectives, (i) to discredit and discard widely held delusions concerning the poverty of the continent, delusions widely spread among both European and African circles; and (ii) in place of those delusions, supply an applicable set of policies, made comprehensively for practical realization of the sustainable transformation of Africa. It adopts a progressive Afrocentric approach rather than the Eurocentric development strategy that has dominated the economic transformation of the continent for ages. Poor governance backed by poor leadership remains the underlying factors of the continents underdevelopment. A sea of confusion clouds the socioeconomic transformation of the continent. The focus of the paper is on African states in general and in particular landlocked states, leadership and resources use in the transformation of the continent so that the people benefit from natural resources. As such, the paper examines the narratives (positive and negative) emerging from the OBOR and FOCAC offensive for Africa which equally challenges that of Western Europe which has for long seen its role as hegemonic and unquestionable. Theoretically and empirically, the analysis concerns challenging clashing world views and perceptions having implications for the continent’s transformation China’s engagement in Africa. It is clear that countries on the coast line are of advantage, the existence of poor leadership can equally be a curse to these countries. The cases of Nigeria and Cameroon illustrate a good example (Omotola 2006; Forje 2011; Asonganyi 2015). Putting western influence in Africa to one side, how do we aid Africans in achieving the most rapid realization of the people’s mental potentialities, for mastering the advanced technologies? African industry and agriculture urgently require improving the welfare of the people?

Full Text:


DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/bmr.v6n2p17


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Business and Management Research
ISSN 1927-6001 (Print)   ISSN 1927-601X (Online)

Copyright © Sciedu Press 
To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the 'Sciedupress.com' domain to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.