The recently concluded World Economic Forum on Africa held in Abuja, Nigeria focused on growth.
Awa Marie Coll Seck, Minister of Health and Social Action of Senegal, in Investing in Health
Africa is an article of faith. I believe in this continent.
Marieme Jamme is the Founder of SpotOne Global Solutions and a Young Global Leader
Africa has been rising for a long time. I hope we will eventually get to a point where we have risen.
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance of Nigeria, in Africa Rising
Africa represents our fastest-growing region in the world. If you want to be relevant, you need to be in this part of the world.
But the event was overshadowed by the abducted Nigerian girls.
So many questions.
This past February, Boko Haram murdered almost 60 young Nigerian boys. A month ago 276 girls were kidnapped. 50 escaped. Amnesty International reports:
But a year on, the violence has intensified in both scope and casualties and the population are becoming increasingly vulnerable, not only to abuses by Boko Haram, but also to violations by the state security forces who have regularly responded with heavy-handed and indiscriminate violence of their own.
In the first four months of 2014, more than 1,800 people have been killed in the conflict. In April, on the same day that the schoolgirls were abducted from Chibok, Borno state, a car bomb planted by Boko Haram in an Abuja bus station killed more than 70 people.
What about the boys who were slaughtered? The men? The women? How were this many girls disappeared? What about the government’s involvement? How did the 50 girls manage to escape? Why was so much time allowed to pass? How many more 1000s will die?
And what about us? Political scientist and UCLA professor Ed Keller argues:
“There’s a certain amount of racism involved in the tendency to look upon African conflicts as being normal and being a part of the way Africans behave, as opposed to something whites need to be concerned with,” he said.
President Obama? Chicago vs. Sandy Hook?
Only questions. No answers.