Pan Africanism refers to the philosophies which were focused on promoting the idea of the unification of Africa. Over the years there were changes in the historical period and the evolution of ideas, but through these periods, one thing that remained the same is the unification of Africa. The reason that the pan- Africanism often stayed the same is partly that it developed in the institutions of higher learning. One of the pronounced supporters of pan-Africanism was Kwame Nkrumah. His idea was that Africans should be able to liberate themselves from the ties fo the colonial master. This focus was much more political as compared to the other champions of pan African. He was able to champion this movement and achieved some level of success. This paper will look at some of the achievement of Pan-Africanism based on Nkrumah’s model.
First, the movement led to both political and cultural liberation in the African countries. Some African states gained political independence through -peaceful transition of power when the former colonial master handed over power to the African. The first country that was able to attain liberation in 1957 and South African was the last in the year 1994. However, it was not just a natural thing as only countries transition to a peaceful shift of power. Some states had to fight hard to achieve some freedom. The liberation of Ghana inspired some movement such as Mau Mau in Kenya and ANC in South Africa. Although different states attained independence at different times, the countries that had freedom provided resources for liberation movements in the other countries Aggarwal, A. (2018, May). The connection of pan-African movement and coincided with the liberation of the African Americans during the Civil Rights movement. Therefore, the two movements informed each other. But one of the things that seemed evident is that there was unity of purpose that helped to achieve the liberation of the African people.
Pan-Africanism also created a sense of unity among Africans and Blacks all over the world. Through the quest to achieve freedom, Kwame Nkrumah was able to challenge the African leaders to come together with the aim of calling for freedom for his people. The states that had already achieved independence worked hard and provided a hiding place for militia groups that were still fighting for freedom in their nations. A good example is how the countries in the southern part of Africa all united to provide a room for the freedom fighters in South Africa. Even in the cases where the colonial authorities pursued the leaders, the leaders sought refuge in the other countries in South African (Getachew, 2018). Some of the transition governments were formed in foreign nations and move into their home countries at a later stage. Therefore, the pan-African movement achieved so much unity among the African leaders of the time.
The movement also achieved an economic freedom for the African people. Through the quest for liberty, African was able to get back the resources that had for a long time been under the control of the colonial powers. Over the years of colonisation, the White man had taken control of all modes of production including land and labour. However, through the Pan African movement, the Africans were able to get back these resources and still make their lives even better. However, it has been argued that Neocolonialism has still limited some of the African nations from achieving their full potential (Getachew, 2018). A case in point is the Congolese conflict. Several studies have shown that the conflict in the country has often been instigated by other international players that are interested in the countries resources. However, in many of the African states, the Pan-African movement led to economic freedom and the emancipation of Africans.
Pan-Africanism also led to the improvement of education and attainment of higher education levels for the African both in Africa and abroad. During the colonial period, most Africans did not get the chance to get a primary education, latter own to advance their studies. There were no facilities that offered training for the Africans. A case in the example was in South African, where the African schools were not well equipped and also did not have teachers. However, with the coming of Pan-Africanism, the people were able to champion for equal chances of education (Bird 2018). Pan Africanism lead to the establishment of universities and other institutions of higher learning that could ensure that Africans can get a chance to advance their studies. Therefore, Pan-Africanism had an impact on the educational standards of Africans and black in the world.
However, some people have often argued that Pan-Africanism did not achieve much in Africa. There are still cases of extreme poverty and poor leadership that many countries still experience. Besides, there does not seem to be any unity between African leaders to deal with the problems that they are experiencing. From this view, it has been hard to point out some of the substantive benefits that pan African achieved.
Conclusively, pan Africanism was a great time in the history of African and the world as a whole. The principal aim of the movement was to unite all blacks not only in African but across the globe to stand up and champion for their rights. Over the years, the action was able to rally leaders from various parts of Africa to call for their rights and thus achieve independence. From such a view, then pan Africanism reached its goal.
Aggarwal, A. (2018, May). Politico-cultural Philosophy of Kwame Nkrumah. In Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy (Vol. 32, pp. 3-7).
Getachew, A. (2018). Securing Postcolonial Independence: Kwame Nkrumah and the Federal Idea in the Age of Decolonization. Ab Imperio, 2018(3), 89-113.
Bird, G. K. (2018). Bringing African Scholarship Back In: Lessons from the Pan-African Political Project. In Recentering Africa in International Relations (pp. 261-281). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.