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African leaders and their people

Jul 3, 2012, 1:11 PM

Many African leaders show signs of humility, and to be caring for their people, the moment they come to power.

They make big promises to respect the rule of law and democracy.

However, many of them soon after they settle in power begin to see these fundamental principles of governance as foreign concepts.

African leaders have many things to learn from the misfortunes of Mubarak, Taylor, Gbagbo, and Gaddafi etc.

They must all learn that the abuse of power will no longer be condoned by the international community.

Take for instance the case of Sudan, where it seems President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, one of Africa’s longest serving leaders, is not enjoying his presidency these days.

For the past two weeks, anti-austerity protesters have been calling for the resignation of the Bashir government.

Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes in Darfur, charges Sudan has dismissed as baseless and politically motivated.

However, if the demonstrations continue to escalate despite mass arrests, it will be a serious political development in that country.

African leaders including Bashir must know that they owe a duty to their citizens to respect the rule of law and democracy.

Leadership is about being accountable to your people.

African leaders who rule their countries with an iron fist must know that, one day, they will be made accountable for their actions.