When Donald Trump was inaugurated on January 20, 2017, there were little misconceptions that the 45th President of the United States would be a friend of Africa.
His campaign was wildly controversial for the presidential candidate of the United States of America. Anti-immigration rhetoric, adoration of Vladimir Putin and sexual misconduct allegations were the highlights of Trump's troubled campaign.
When he became the leader of the free world, there were little misconceptions that he would cosy up to Africa. With a (white?) America first philosophy, Africa was obviously down his list of priorities, that's if it was on the list in the first place.
In true form, Trump's comments on Africa have been what we expected. A year into his presidency, Trump used a derogatory term to describe African and Latin countries.
"Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?" allegedly said, Trump. The White House was quick to deny this claim but the allegation has stuck like maggots on a corpse. And why not? The POTUS' colourful expressions make his infamous comment on Africa believable.
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On Thursday, August 23, 2018, Donald Trump decided to get into the land reforms in South Africa. "I have asked Secretary of State @SecPompeo to closely study the South Africa land and farm seizures and expropriations and the large-scale killing of farmers. “South African Government is now seizing land from white farmers.” @TuckerCarlson@FoxNews" he tweeted.
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Anyone with a scant knowledge about apartheid and institutionalized racism would understand why black South Africans have been clamouring for their lands taken by Afrikaan settlers to be returned.
Trump's tweet was misleading and a product of Fox's steadfast right-wing agenda. His tweet was swiftly denied by the South African government and farmers as well.
Donald Trump's latest blunder is a scathing criticism of the leader of the most populous black nation in the world.
According to a report by Financial Times, sources revealed that Trump informed aides after his meeting with Buhari that he never wanted to meet someone so lifeless again.
"The first meeting, with Nigeria's ailing 75-year-old Muhammadu Buhari in April, ended with the US president telling aides he never wanted to meet someone so lifeless again, according to three people familiar with the matter," the newspaper claimed.
The ironic and funny thing about Trump's remarks on Buhari is that during his visit to the White House, our President went the diplomatic route when asked about the infamous shith*le comment.
Don't let us get it twisted. No one thought Trump was a saint but his lack of diplomacy and colourful use of words have shocked the world. It has alienated traditional allies.
For Africa, Trump's comments on Africa clearly shows where he stands. Africa is not his top priority and to be fair it ought not to be. Donald Trump got into power on a wave of a largely dominated white base who want to wrestle back America from the hands of minorities. They could care less about what happens in Africa.
Now, more than ever is the time for Africa to stop seeking handouts from Washington no matter who is in power. We should determine our fate. For too long a time, this continent has been an afterthought for foreign leaders.