By Arap D
If you are supporting a football team, support it on the basis of the quality of the game. That’s the beauty of football. Cutting across borders, races and all other human elements that divide us. I am a big fan of quality football. I support teams without putting into contexts socio-eco-political dynamics of their countries.
But for those who must introduce the political angle to justify support to a national team, kindly do so from a point of information. Let’s talk about France.
France might have several “Africans” playing for the national team but the truth is that of all European colonizers, France was and is still the most merciless, firmly holding hostage of its former colonies 50 years later after the official death of colonialism. Exploitative to the core. Here’s why:
1. Just before France conceded to African demands for independence in the 1960s, it carefully organised its former colonies (CFA countries) in a system of “compulsory solidarity” which consisted of obliging the 14 African states to put 65% of their foreign currency reserves into the French Treasury, plus another 20% for financial liabilities. This means these 14 African countries only ever have access to 15% of their own money! If they need more they have to borrow their own money from the French at commercial rates! And this has been the case since the 1960s.
2. France has the first right to buy or reject any natural resources found in the land of the Francophone countries. So even if the African countries can get better prices elsewhere, they can’t sell to anybody until France says it doesn’t need the resources.
3. In the award of government contracts, French companies must be considered first; only after that can these countries look elsewhere. It doesn’t matter if the CFA countries can obtain better value for money elsewhere.
4. Presidents of CFA countries (former French colonies) that have tried to leave the CFA zone have had political and financial pressure put on them by successive French presidents. In certain instances, France funding rebel groups to oust democratically elected governments . Paul Kagame for a long time has been branded the “enemy and dictator” tag and fought viciously by several French governments for opposing the French neo-colonialism.
5. These African states are French taxpayers – taxed at a staggering rate – yet the citizens of these countries aren’t French and don’t have access to the public goods and services their money helps pay for.
You all can now shout how France is your “black national team” at the World cup finals. France cares so much about your support and association yet their very own white citizens especially the far right hate the national team for being full of immigrants.