By Abdulmumin Giwa
This is the second time I am writing on the issue of some African countries making efforts to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC) accusing it of being biased against African leaders. Just of recent, Gambia concluded processes of its withdrawal while South Africa and other African countries including Burundi, Namibia and Kenya are considering taking a similar step.
The Gambia is accusing the Hague-based tribunal of “persecution and humiliation of people of color, especially Africans’. This has moved the emotions and sentiments of a lot of Africans and people of color across the globe.
The Gambian government says “there are western countries, at least 30, that have committed heinous war crimes against independent sovereign states and their citizens since the creation of the ICC and not a single western war criminal has been indicted”
It has roused some Africans into condemning the ICC while others are calling on it to change its ways. Africans have blindly been steered into believing that the ICC is unfair to African leaders who hail the idea of withdrawing from it.
Even if the allegations against the ICC are real and could be substantiated, it can never be refused that there is a verse difference between the crimes committed by those African leaders in comparison to those of the Western European and American countries.
Just like rightly stated by the Gambian authorities, the crimes committed by those European countries were committed on other sovereign nations and not on the people they are leading. Unlike the Africans who commit such crimes on their own people those accused of such war crimes in Europe commit such crimes on other countries. This fact cannot be dismissed.
The way and manner African leaders rule over their people is extremely dictatorial, tyrannical and authoritarian. Most of such African leaders are stooges of some leaders in Europe and America and of recent, like in Nigeria, Saudi Arabia. All they are after is serving the interest of their masters in Europe, America and others to the detriment of their people.
Such interests could include minority cleansing, genocide and economic and political crimes. Virtually all of these African leaders enjoy immunity in their countries and could even act against the constitutions of their countries and disobey court orders in their countries thereby going against the tenets of democracy.
Such leadership delinquencies are never found in European or American leaders. More so the war crimes committed by them are in conjunction with and support of the leaders of the affected sovereign nations in Africa and other colored nations. Mostly the leaders are in pursuit of deals of benefit to their countries in Europe or America and of personal benefits of the African leaders and not to their people.
If there are no ways by which the African leaders would be brought to book for crimes against humanity they commit then a new wave of slavery is being introduced. So it is wrong to view it from the point of view of ICC punishing African leaders and so they should withdraw from the ICC. It should rather be viewed from the point of view that the ICC be made to prosecute all signatories to the Rome Statute that are ratified.
There are a lot of crimes committed by African leaders on their people that one would never hear European or American leaders committing on their own people. The European and American leaders respect, protect and uphold the fundamental human rights of their people which is different with the African leaders who disregard, abuse and flaunt the fundamental human rights of their people. Keep all sentiments aside, this is the truth.
It is only in Africa that it is not news because a uniformed personnel, a police or soldier, violates citizen’s rights and nothing is done. The African leaders have made it so suppressive that it is considered as normal for those in authority to brutalize ordinary citizens because they are in position of power. This nonsense cannot happen in Europe or America.
For instance in Nigeria, the present Muhammadu Buhari regime killed over 1000 unarmed men, women and children in Zaria, Nigeria burning some of them alive simply because they are Shiites Muslims and he is Sunni Muslims and he sees them as his adversaries. Where in Europe or America can this happen that a Catholic president will kill all the Anglicans because he is in power? It is only in Africa that you have power-drunk leaders with elements of insanity in their brains.
For instance Omar El-Bashir of Sudan is accused of killing about 30,000 people through genocide against Masali and Zagwa people he is leading; Paul Biya is accused of shedding the blood of over 20,000 of his people through kidnapping and murder of those who oppose him; Mengitsu Haile Mariam was accused of killing over 400,000 Ethiopians of the Kebele tribe he considers as his adversaries; Idi Amin of Uganda was accused of killing over 25,000 of his people who are Obote; Ahmed Sekou Toure of guinea is accuse of killing 100,000 after declaring a one party system of seven years term and had been president several times over; Marcius Nguema is accused of causing over one-third of the Guinea population to flee the country due to fear of his brutalities and is accused of killing over 50,000 people; Hessein Habre of Chad is accused of genocide against the Hajerai and Zaghawa people where over 80,000 people were said to have been killed.
These are the types of leaders we have in Africa that could kill their people for personal whims and caprices and not for national interest. They are either carried away by foreign, political, tribal or religious interests for which they can kill their people to achieve. What a mentality.
Even now as they fight to bring down the ICC, they are being used by the European and American leaders to discredit the ICC to avoid them ending up before the Court. That is why the trend is not pressurizing the ICC to prosecute the European leaders guilty of war crimes but to condemn the ICC for punishing African leaders for war crimes. Why is the trend in this direction moving from country to country? Most of these African leaders are European and American stooges serving their interests.
The African leaders submit to them willfully for protection to remain in power. They allow themselves to be used to fight proxy wars in their lands. Is only in Africa that the Americans, Israelis and Saudis can come and instruct the Nigerian president to wipe out Iranian interests and influence because Iran is their adversary and not because Nigeria is at war with Iran.
Those Europeans and Americans guilty of war crimes are using their stooges in Africa to fight against the ICC to discredit it and to bring it down to save themselves and subsequently empower their stooges leading Africa. That is simply what is happening now.
It must be noted that the African leaders commit such war crimes against their people to satisfy the interest of the European and American leaders due to elements of neo-colonialism and defeatist mentality.
In Nigeria for instance, President Buhari wants to cleanse the Shiites for America and Saudi Arabia who see the growing Shiites population as a threat to their interest. They see it as the influence of Iran in the region which they must contain by all means. Hence they select and support the president and give him a mission. For his own interest and to continue in power he does what they instruct and in the end he becomes a war criminal while they pull aside and leave him to face the ICC.
Even in other colored countries that are not African, like in Iraq, it was America that made Saddam Hussein in order to fight Iran. They armed him and use him to fight war with the Islamic Iran for eight years and even allowed him to take over Kuwait and then used that to finish him to sweep their dirty work under the carpet. That is why their war crimes are committed offshore and not in their homelands unlike the African leaders who commit the war crimes on their own people for the interests of the masters in Europe and America.
Even in Yemen, the said leader in power is being imposed on the populace by foreign powers made up of Saudi Arabia, America and Israel. He is not in the country but his people are being killed to place him in power. In Bahrain also the majority are being ruled by a minority that bring foreigners to the country and register them as citizens while they deny the majority citizenship. These kinds of things cannot happen in Europe or in America.
Definitely it is wrong for any right-thinking African to think that his country withdrawing from the ICC is in his interest. Those African and colored leaders enjoy immunity in their countries and are to a certain extent beyond prosecution for crimes they commit against humanity in such countries. Hence the ICC remains the only hope for suppressed Africans and colored people against their leaders not because the ICC is fair to all, but because the oppressive African leaders will face the consequences of their actions. This could serve as deterrent to those who intend to get power to suppress others.
My belief is that the African leaders would not easily be submissive to the European and American leaders and serve their interest against their people because if they do, they would end up being indicted by the ICC while their masters watch from the other side. The campaign should be geared towards making the ICC to be fair to all and not to withdraw from it. This is what the European and American leaders would not want to see. Sincerely speaking African leaders are not worth being supported against the ICC and the ICC should continue to stand firm. Those Africans and colored who support bringing down the ICC are only digging their own graves and serving the interests of the imperialist dictators. Let the ICC stand and be pressured to be fair to all.
By Abdulmumin Giwa