By Allan Ssempebwa (Uganda)-“Revolutions are brought about by men, by men who think as men of action and act as men of thought.” This is one famous quote by a great African Pan-Africanist Kwame Nkrumah. As the African Union holds it 15th Summit in Kampla, it leaves scepticism as to whether African States are capable of working together to solve Africa’s most pressing challenges, to cause “a revolution” on the continent.
One such challenge has exposed its filthy dark head in the recent 7/11 twin bombings on Uganda now blamed on the Al-Shabab Mujahedeen militants with connections to the Al-Queada terrorist group. But even as threats on Uganda loomed, she became the first nation to respond to the AMISOM agenda in 2007 and took its troops to Somalia. It has remained the lone force until recently when Burundi joined in 2008, exhibiting commitment to flush out these militants in Somalia .Needless to say to say is that several African countries pledged to send troops such Ghana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone to the battle ground. But until 7/11, Uganda and Burundi remained the only countries in Somalia already reduced both in personel and hardware due to attacks from the militants. There seems no concerted efforts on the continent to end this scenario yet the major idea behind deployment was to have other states take part in flushing out terrorism but it seems like some African states are not in affirmation with ths A.U mission in Somalia.
Uganda alone is grappling with domestic predicaments like the LRA offensive in Northern Uganda which the government cannot entirely call a worn battle for as long as Kony re-groups from his unknown safe haven. Our economy only appears flourishing in terms of growth than physical development such as infrastructural development and yet instability appears to haunt the country both within and from outside to destroy even the little that we hold.The spirit of commitment and willingness should be emphasized as the Heads-of-State convene in Kampla. Nkrumah and Sekou Toure stood on this to liberate the rest of Africa from colonialism and yet today, no leader appears to borrow a leaf from the them. These were the times when a problem in a single country was considered a problem on the whole continent. The lack of such a spirit today explains why the mandate for the peace keeping role in Somalia was handled by only two countries for over three years now.