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ED Disses Africans Mimicking Europeans, As He Opens PAPU Indaba

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By Matabeleland North Correspondent


PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa Friday took time to criticise some Africans he accused of continuously looking down upon themselves while apportioning high regard for Western ways of doing things.

He was officially opening the 10th session of the Pan African Postal Union (PAPU) Plenipotentiary conference and the 39th Ordinary Session of the Administration Council in Victoria Falls.

Mnangagwa told delegates to the conference that Africa’s tragedy was in “wanting to live western life.”

He said this while referring to the Victoria Falls which he said was named by David Livingstone in honour of his Queen Victoria Falls, insinuating that Africans do not appreciate one of the Seven Wonders of the World in its local context.

“Let me explain to you why it is called Victoria Falls. There was a man called David Livingstone who visited this area and found some people who told him it is called Mosi-oa-Tunya and he couldn’t comprehend. He named it after his Queen Victoria Falls who was sitting somewhere back there in his country. If we advertise saying visit Mosi-oa-Tunya you don’t come, but if we say come to Victoria Falls you come. That is the tragedy of Africa,” said Mnangagwa.

The PAPU conference started on Monday and ends this Saturday with more than 100 delegates from 25 countries.

Some attended virtually.

Mnangagwa challenged the postal services sector to re-define itself in line with modern trends so as to contribute towards the achievement of Africa’s Agenda 2063.

He said PAPU has an inherent obligation to advance and propel the founding vision of a united, peaceful, developed and integrated Africa.

“The onus is on the agencies of the African Union to be catalysts to the realisation of Agenda 2063 and the building of an Africa we all want. I urge the sector to continue diversifying into a broad range of new services to enhance and increase the competitiveness of the letter and parcel delivery business,” said President Mnangagwa.

He said the postal sector should facilitate provision of government services on electronic platforms such as e-government services for the convenience of delivery of services.

“The Pan African Postal Union is challenged to support governments on the continent to bridge the digital divide. This must translate to citizens having access to basic communication in line with Africa’s quest to create knowledge economies and innovation driven development,” he said.

Mnangagwa, who was accompanied by his deputy Costantino Chiwenga, challenged the postal services sector to adopt new technologies and ensure technological space remained safe from cyber criminals.

He said PAPU should play a developmental role in uplifting standards of living in line with aspirations of the Africa Union’s Agenda 2063.