Poverty is a factor that is affecting most of the countries in Africa. Julius Nyerere argument on how to eradicate this problem of poverty is evidence as he tries to explain why some countries for example; Tanzania is facing high level of poverty. He also tries to explain how the rich countries exploits the poor countries by making the poor countries compensate for losses incurred during economic transfer to the oil producers. This is seen as the richer countries are the ones that determine the prices of the exports not having in mind the cost of production incurred by the poor countries while producing the goods. This intern forces the poor countries to direct most of their finances to certain commodities e.g. oil hence neglecting others.
Thomas Sankara tries to justify the need for revolution by taking the power from individual persons to the people. He father explains how the revolution may reduce the corruption experienced in the country, bring about diplomacy and also create even distribution of the countries resources among the citizens. The revolution tries to save the country from the few individuals who have made the country loose it respect. This is by providing bad governance hence contributing to the suffering of the citizens while their families enjoy life at the expenses of the poor citizens.
Julius Nyerere’s argument on the eradication of poverty
Julius Nyerere argues that the entire idea of aid is wrong. He continues that it is wrong for most of the people to be forced to beg without dignity. When one is poor because the other is rich or when one is rich because the other is poor, the wealth transfer from the rich to the poor is once right. Being that in a nation there is a government that oversees the transfer of the wealth, while in the world the authority to do this work does not exist hence creating confusion on how the transfer should be affected. Being that the poor and the rich countries are on the same plant and that the rich countries are getting richer and richer at the expense of the poor countries. This gives the poor countries the right to demand change as the proletariat in the developed countries also demanded change in the past. Hence, the only issue is whether the needed change comes by confrontation or dialogue. It is known that 50% of the world’s populations are in countries with per capita Gross National Product of not more than $200 per annum. Professors Tinbergen has anticipated that 10% of the world’s population consumes 25 times of what the remaining 90% of the population consumes. The situation above is not accidental as, if there is a given amount of riches created in the world. If one group takes more of the riches available than the other group, this limits the amount of wealth available for others.
In 1973 when the bill of oil in Tanzania rise from 200 million to 750 million in 1975, it was a reduction in the Tanzanians’ wealth but an increase in another person’s wealth. However, the extra cost of oil in Tanzania is not because Tanzania consumes extra oil but is to pay the extra amount which developed nations have to pay the oil producers. Julius Nyerere continues to argue that oil use is required in modern agriculture. However, extra production price cannot be accounted for as Tanzania cannot set the price of the sisal fiber. This is because the sisal fiber export prices are set in North American and Europe. The things needed to be bought with the export of sisal however have their cost increased to meet the manufactures extra oil cost. This reach countries not only increase the cost of their products due to the increased cost of oil but also to compensate the owners and the workers of the higher oil prices implicated in producing the consumption goods. For the wealthy countries workers cost of living is prevented from falling this is by increasing their cost of living and the owners to prevent their profits from depreciating. Both costs are incurred in the goods they sell. By this we not only pay for the extra riches acquired from the poor countries by the oil producers but also compensate the wealthy country people for the loss they incurred during the wealth transfer of from their economy to the oil producers (African Affairs, 1985 pp 489).
Thomas Sankara’s justification of revolution against the previous government
Thomas Sankara justifies that the revolution was not only a revolutionary coup against 17 May 1983 reactionary alliance, but the Upper Volta people's long straggle outcome and against their enemies who are external. The revolution gave the people the hope of satisfying theirs
Freedom, democracy, real progress and independence. It was also seen as to restore the greatness and dignity of the country that has been in 23 years of neo-colonialism of mockery. The revolution was also mobilized as the people of the previous government were guided by their personal interest. They applied the most untruthful methods, theft of goods, corruption at large, property speculation, influence peddling, nepotism and favoritism were on a daily basis. They used the state power for more theft and moved for the luxurious holiday abroad in a yearly basis. Their children went for the education in luxurious schools in abroad and increased of any slight sickness; all state resources were directed towards providing care in abroad luxurious hospitals. All this took place in the expense of honest people in poor conditions. The riches of the country was benefiting the minority, and the larger populations were in a miserable condition.
Within this majority are the working class, who despite their monthly income, were trapped in the entrepreneurial consumer society. Their capitals were taken before they withdrew them. Among the majority are also the peasants. They are harassed, expropriated, humiliated and imprisoned every day. Even though it is their hard work that brings riches, and their production keeps the poor economy going. The same peasant who helps the economy of the country is the one who suffer the most from poor roads, health services, buildings, lack of schools and their children’s education equipment.
The National Revolution Council brings about the responsibility of restoring the nation to its rightful place by also fighting against oppressors and exploiters. Thomas Sankara justifies that the August revolution is to end imperialist exploitation and domination and is to be built on everybody’s involvement. The objective of the revolution is to give power to people. It is to destroy the machinery of the neo-colonial state and design a new machine that guarantees people power. Giving people the power eliminate the domination by the conservative exploitative classes hence do away with anti-democratic dictatorship over the economy, politics, justice, administration, ideology and culture. The revolution will be taken to every province, village, every public or private business every home and everywhere. If placed in mind that people’s interest comes before personal interest the chances of making, mistakes will be minimal. The revolutionary main objective is to build our countries new society. This will enable all citizens with the revolutionary mind to build their happiness. For this to happen, the revolution will put in motion a complete disturbance in all cultural, economic, and social sector not considering how it may displease the backward looking sector and the conservative of the society (West Africa,1995 pp 428).
The main contribution to the increase in poverty level in the world is the large gap between the rich and the poor. The rich mainly use the poor to solve their financial problems mainly by exploiting them. This can be by using the poor to ascend to state position hence mismanaging the countries resources to benefit their personal need. This intern increases the gap as the rich become richer and the poor become poorer.
As most nations tries to solve the problem by trying to evenly distribute resources among various regions, the world should also have a criteria of trying to reduce the gap between the developed and the underdeveloped countries to solve the increasing poverty level in the world. However, this is not easy as every nation tries to secure its economic well-being. This is evident in the text where the Tanzania fiber prices are set in Europe yet it is produced in Tanzania. This clearly depicts lack of independence in controlling prices of commodities produced by the developing countries. As well Tanzania increases its oil prices to its citizens in order to cater for the extra amount that the developed nations have to pay the oil producers. This results into a very big economic disparity levels between the developing and the developed nations.
On the other hand, Thomas Sankara argues that power should be transferred from an individual to the people so that the citizens can be protected from exploitation by the few rich individuals who benefit themselves together with their families at the public’s expense. This transfer of power will result into democracy, real progress, independency and balanced development across the nation.
African Affairs: Journal of the Royal African Society. London, 1901. Print.
West Africa. London: Afrimedia International, etc., 1917. Print.