20 November 2012

Africa: Kaunda Receives Achievers Award

FORMER President Kenneth Kaunda says Africa should liberate itself from poverty and underdevelopment and stop relying on "outsiders" to take the lead.

Dr Kaunda said the continent had in the past suffered some of the most degrading practices known to humanity.

He said Africa endured slavery for a long time, followed by colonialism in the aftermath of the Berlin conference of 1884 when the continent was partitioned by the European powers of the day.

Dr Kaunda said this in a speech read for him by Zambia's Ambassador to Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg and the European Union, Grace Kabwe during the occasion to receive the Voice Magazine Achievers Award 2012 at De Koning Party and Event Centre in Amsterdam.

"It is important to mention that the partition was done without due regard to the interests of the indigenous people. The colonial settlers did not consider the African people as being worthy of any respect.

"In South Africa for instance, the settlers introduced an evil system of apartheid under which the African people suffered some of the worst acts of racism and racial discrimination," he said.

Dr Kaunda said the people of South Africa were denied their rights for a long time notwithstanding the fact that the United Nations had in 1975 declared apartheid as a crime against humanity.

On the award, Dr Kaunda said he felt greatly honoured to have been nominated by the Voice Magazine Achievers award committee for the prestigious award.

The Voice Magazine is an informative publication which covers different aspects of development taking place in Africa.

Dr Kaunda said the magazine was, therefore, helping to bring out to the readers in Europe the reality on what was taking place on the African continent.

He said this was a positive initiative because in this day and age, people were living in a fast globalising world.

"We now live in a world in which issues of trade and investment opportunities across different international boundaries are being facilitated through regional integration, international cooperation and understanding," he said.

Dr Kaunda said Africa was a continent blessed with immense natural resources and that there was need to focus attention on enhancing its economic and social development.

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