African Countries Unload on U.S. President Trump After His Disparaging Remarks

Several African nations have denounced the characterization of their nations as “shit-hole countries” by U.S. President Donald Trump.

US President Mr. Donald Trump
US President Mr. Donald Trump

The vulgar reference was reportedly made by the American President at a meeting with Congressional members last week at the White House.

In an official response, the continental group known as the African Union (AU), in a statement issued last week from his headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia said, “The African Union Commission is frankly alarmed at statements by the president of the United States when referring to migrants of African countries and others in such contemptuous terms. Considering the historical reality of how many Africans arrived in the U.S. during the Atlantic slave trade, this flies in the face of all accepted behavior and practice.”, the statement released by its spokesperson said.

The southern African powerhouse South Africa summoned made a formal protest on Monday over the U.S. President’s remarks and at a meeting with the top U.S.    representative in Johannesburg, South Africa said that it was concerned about the “statements that were allegedly made by President Donald Trump.”

U.S. diplomats in Ghana, Botswana, and Senegal were also summoned by those countries in order to register their protest at the statement allegedly made by the U.S. President.

African Union ambassadors at the U.N. on last Friday issued a strongly worded statement in which they said, ” “The African Union Mission wishes to express its infuriation, disappointment and outrage over the unfortunate comment made by Mr. Donald Trump, President of the United States of America, which remarks dishonor the celebrated American creed and respect for diversity and human dignity.”

The Gambian Foreign Ministry denounced the U.S. President’s remarks saying, “The Government of the Republic of The Gambia is appalled by the remarks and finds it inconceivable that a President of a country regarded by many as one of the most tolerant and democratic countries in the world would utter such racial remarks.”

“The Government of the Republic of The Gambia is appalled by the remarks and finds it inconceivable that a President of a country regarded by many as one of the most tolerant and democratic countries in the world would utter such racial remarks,” the statement noted, and concluded by saying “The Government of The Gambia, therefore, calls on President Trump to withdraw his remarks and give a fitting apology to the African continent and Haiti.”

President Trump and some of his allies have denied making the disparaging comments.

By Emmanuel Abalo

West African Journal Magazine

 

 

African Countries Defy and Vote Against U.S. on “Jerusalem Declaration”

Philadelphia, PA – A vote on Thursday at the United Nations General Assembly shows a total of 35 African countries in the General Assembly voting against the world super power the U.S. to reject its recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state of Israel.

United States UN Ambassador Nikki Haley
United States UN Ambassador Nikki Haley

The U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley issued a threat to countries which voted against the US saying international funding assistance could be cut off. Then candidate Trump had vowed during campaigning that, if elected, he would move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.

African countries which voted against the US include: 

Algeria

Angola

Boatswana

Burkina Faso

Burundi

Cabo Verde

Chad Comoros

Congo

Cote d’Ivoire

Djibouti

Egypt

Eritrea

Ethiopia

Gabon

Gambia

Ghana

Guinea

Liberia

Madagascar

Mali

Mauritania

Mauritius

Morocco

Mozambique

Namibia

Niger

Nigeria

Senegal

Somalia

South Africa

Sudan

Tunisia

United Republic of Tanzania and Zimbabwe

Togo President Faure-Gnassingbe
Togo President Faure-Gnassingbe

Togo was the only African nation which joined in support of the United States along with Guatemala, Honduras, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia and Palau.

African countries which abstained from the vote included: 

Benin

Cameroon

Equatorial Guinea

Lesotho

Malawi

Rwanda

South Sudan and Uganda

There were no votes recorded for the Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Swaziland and Zambia

Of the 16 member nations of the sub-regional economic grouping known as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), all voted against the U.S. declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel except for Togo which supported the US while Benin abstained from voting.

Sierra Leone, as an ECOWAS member, recorded no vote.

Of the 15 member countries of the southern Africa regional economic grouping – the South Africa Development Authority (SADC) Swaziland, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia recorded no votes , while Lesotho and Malawi abstained.

20 African countries comprise the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), a free trade region which stretches from Libya to Swaziland.

An 8-country trade bloc in east Africa makes up the Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD) and include Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, the Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda. The countries of South Sudan and Uganda recorded no vote at the UN General Assembly meeting on the issue while the rest of the members of the group against the United States.

Of the 5 nation Arab Maghreb Union, a trade and political bloc of North African nations consisting of Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia, all voted against the U.S.

35 African nations joined the world community in defying the U.S. at the U.N vote to demand that the world super power rescind its declaration of the contested city of Jerusalem as the capital of of Israel. The non-binding and symbolic vote puts the U.S. in an awkward ad isolated position internationally.

Even major allies like the UK, Japan, German and France voted for the UN Resolution. 

It is unclear why Togo, the lone African nation, sided with the U.S. This long time African ally of the U.S. is facing political upheaval with calls and protests against President Faure Gnassingbe to step down from power.

Sierra Leone President Ernest Koroma
Sierra Leone President Ernest Koroma

Sierra Leone recorded no vote and although no explanation was given, and it is assumed that the outgoing Koroma Administration is playing safe so not to hamstring the “Jerusalem position” of a new government which takes over following elections in March, 2018.

The U.S. Ambassador to the UN, following the vote, declared it null and void and re-echoed the position of President Donald Trump to cut of aid packages to countries which voted against the U.S.

 “We will remember it when we are called upon once again to make the world’s largest contribution to the United Nations,” Ms. Haley said. “And we will remember when so many countries come calling on us, as they so often do, to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit.” 

Muhammadu-Buhari
Nigeria President Muhammadu-Buhari

Sub-Sahara African countries are the biggest recipient of U.S. economic and development aid with the bulk going to the following countries in fiscal 2017:

Nigeria – $604.8 million

Ethiopia -$512.6 million

Kenya – $618.5 million

Uganda -$457 million

Zambia -$417 million

Egypt – $150 million

Senegal – $100.8 million

Liberia – $95 million

Ghana and Ivory Coast – $145.4 million

Egypt is the recipient of about $1.31 billion in security assistance.

UN Voting Record on Jerusalem
UN Voting Record on Jerusalem

It remains to be seen how the non-support and defiance of African countries against the U.S. on the “Jerusalem Declaration” will affect future economic and security assistance.

By Emmanuel Abalo

West African Journal Magazine