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Saturday, 30 January 2010


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Konde is a thought leader. African leaders are merely exploiting simplistic populations to stay in power. It is an incestuous lust for what can be gotten at neither real cost nor challenge.

Many of them are hand-picked and are no natural winners.

George Achu

George Achu - Jan 30, 2010
The African Propensity for Permanent Leadership Unraveled Emmanuel Konde
The African Propensity for permanent leadership Unraveled.
I believe Emmanuel Konde's thesis on the African propensity for permanent leadership is not substantiated. It is vague and overbroad. It seems to be an attempt to justify the institution and maintenance of autocratic nation states in post colonial Africa. His reflection only goes to confirm the public perception that he actively supports the despotic post colonial Camerounian regime. This is food for thought and a challenge to African political scientists and pundits.


konde,in this excellent piece you,ve not shown why Europeans who rejected monarchy and it,s callous effects have all been too eager to see it perrenised in Africa.The African traditional set up was democratic,with the chiefs;quarter heads;elders;councilors each having their roles carved out. Had this set up been exploited positively,like was the situation with the rest of Europe receiving lessons on how state institutions work from Greece,there wouldn,t have been that penchant to hang on forever.But earlier enough these chiefs received directives on how to sell their subjects into slavery and keep those who stay behind under the same yoke.


I agree in part, but there is a chicken and egg relationship. Political conditions must be ripe to foster economic activity, even if that politics is not ideal from a civil libertarian's point of view. Case in point, China. The Chinese communist party, to all intents and purposes a dictatorship adjusted to create conditions for a free enterprise capitalist economy.

What is real leadership about, apart from helping people to rise above their circumstances? Characteristically, you are giving your CPDM crooks a pass, sir. Have you heard about J.J. Rawlings? Was he not president of an African country in dire straits? Please, do not enshrine mediocrity with excuses.

Austin Ngenge

Konde in his treatise overlooks so many elements that have nothing to do with the social and cultural that contribute to culture of permanence of power a s inculcated as natural human instinct leaves much to be desired.firstly the external consequence of neocolonialism and multinational intrigues that help to keep the despots in power.

Konde ignores the fact that that the people hang in there not because of some inbuilt human

George Achu

What would political scientist and pundit Dr. Emmanuel Konde have said if he represented Cameroun at the African Union? That Col. Muammar Gaddafi, president of Lybia and outgoing president of the African Union should not be "thwarted over African Union Presidency"? I ask these questions because in an article published on Up Station Mountain Club Blog yesterday, Dr. Konde vehemently defended the theory of THE AFRICAN PROPENSITY FOR PERMANENT LEADERSHIP. If Konde and his supporters are serious, they should launch a campaign, with Gaddafi, Biya and other like-minded autocrats, for the African Union to abolish term limits to enable Muammar Gaddafi to be the "permanent leader" (president) of the African Union. The Gaddafi case confirms the opinion in my previous article below that the theory of an African propensity of permanent leadership is designed to justify the dispossession of the people of their sovereignty. If this thesis has some basis in some of Africa's traditional societies, why should it be extrapolated to the modern nation state, if not to deprive the people of their sovereignty. Is this not why Europeans overthrew their monarchies and colonized people fought and are still fighting for independence? For our friends of the Republic of Cameroun, I hope the mask has been removed.

Dr A A Agbormbai

An irresponsible article.


For those who can read between the lines, this author portrays the feat of a historical clown- very un-progressive in his thinking.

Africa is what it is today because of ideas like this. Intellectual or not these are the bushes we have to clear before rooting out African dictators. He is of no use to modern Africa and clearly insensitive to issues at hand.
What a shame!!


unfortunately nobody has inalianable rights to facts. Konde,s hypothesis completely missed the point. Leaders don,t cling to power because of environmental constraints.Louis IV,Louis VI,Marie Antoinette,Emelda marcos all contradict the fact that they clung to and misused power as a result of the dire economic situation of their respective countries. It was rather as a result of greed,which is a terrible human vice. If it was a natural phenomenon that people cling to power because of the backwardness of their environment , colonialists would need not provide despots with guns to murder already disadvantaged people. Why do African leaders need to consult their masters in the West when about to form new governments? Why can their natural disposition to cling to power not enable them do things themselves?

Bob Bristol

Well, I think the article makes some sense but one thing which Konde forgets is that some of those monarchs in Old European History were still experimenting on "good" methods of governance. We've come a long way. We are now faced by 2 chioces. One works and the other doesn't. And our leaders have decided to choose that which doesn't work and they are getting the endorsement of people like you, Konde. In a sense you are precipitating the bloodbath that facilitated the toppling of the monarchs. We are in the 21st century sir.


If the institutions of the chiefs,lamidos are European creations,why would they cling to something that is foreign to them? If they are their creation then Konde's idea that environmental constraints perrenise their stay in power is wrong. It is those who created these institutions


European diplomats are the cause of many problems we face in Africa , lets not ignore their activities in Africa then only we will be able to elect our leaders.We have been heating at the wrong spot, fighting our leaders alone is not enough, but those who bypass us and impose leaders on us should be tadgeted too, in this case the Europeans.We have been worshiping the European while they are making fools of us.We must knw that European are to be blamed, particulaly the diplomats who have been organising many coup etat in many coutries in Africa recently in Ivory Coast.We must stop worshiping these Europeans they are trouble makers.They are misleading Africans via CNN,BBC and many others medias.Know that Europeans are not better than Africans,all depent on how Africans see themselve if you still think European are beter than Africans you limit your chance to oppose their malicious activities because you still see them as "superior" to you. What a delusion.

Marc donbon

This is pseudo-intellectualism at its best. The argument is artifitial and contrited. Its an artifitial article that makes an excuse for tyranny and repression. The same kind of argument that justifies mass killings in Rwanda. Basically, it is a plead by an outsider to be seated at the table of the masters so that he too can participate in the feast while holding his fellow countrypeople down in their lives of misery and degradation. Shame on such a useless person.


Since when did semantics & the circumvallating of fiction around facts become equitable with absolute Truth...???

What exactly is it that Konde is unravelling....???

Konde is a master at playing with words around gullible & an uninformed Cameroonian public who are eager to worship words & symbols & not be bothered to take apart pseudo-intellectualism & outrageous assumptions which are entirely baseless & bearing no relationship to facts & reality.


lorater Roc

The article is out of place and out of time.leadership and the propensity to hang on at all cost surely are synonymous to Konde.He tires to justify and defends a principle that has dragged Africa to the stone age with Africans now begging for a return to colonialism as the only way out of the leadership mess.And he thinks the idea of being permanent in power is an outcome of the social and cultural environment.This is fabricated fiction to me because we have seen regime change in many African countries who operate a similar social and cultural conditions to the case in question.What konde should tell us is how being permanent in power helps to move Africa forward.He fails to understand that the despots are kept there by western interests and ethno-tribal agendas.The leadership mess which is the only achievement Africa can boast of since the colons departed is watered by hypothesis such as the one Mr Konde suggests.


What a farce! The propensity to be a "dictatorial ruler for life" is environmentally influenced? Well medics in some quarters have also hypothesised that lunatics, schizophrenics, psychotics and people of similar disposition are the products of their environment. They also go on to rightfully conclude that these people belong in straitjackets and loony bins. Does that then imply that African leaders with their propensity to be induced by their environments should be institutionalised? If so would their environmentally challenged supported be dumped in with them? What a baseless pretentious article!


supported should read supporters

Va Boy

It is part of the Konde-Entrepreneur-CPDM narrative, to blame the victim, to blame the emigrants, those who have made the choice to stay abroad or go abroad because of the impossible conditions created by their sponsors. It does not wash. It is false.

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Interesting essay. Sums up most of my views on the issue and I feel vindicated. It is rather unfortunate that most commentators prefer to spew expletives, instead of a contrary opinion.


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