10 January 2016

Rwanda: It Is Time Africa Opens Up to Africans

editorial

Visa fees have been waived for all African nationals whose countries will be participating in the forth coming Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) due to start next week.

That in itself is no extraordinary, but it just goes to stress that boundaries (borders), especially in African countries, are still the number one barriers to the continent's integration.

It beats logic when one has to travel to an African country and is subjected to unbelievable bureaucratic acrobatics and in an instant, someone with a western passport is waved through without any hindrance. In some cases, the countries where the visa-free traveler hails from will not extend the same courtesy.

Rwanda and Mauritius and maybe another country have opened their borders with free restrictions, especially for African nationals. It is not an act of kindness, just a simple step in promoting the much vaunted "African unity" that has failed to see the day, 50 years-plus later.

Football is one of the world's most unifying factors; warring factions lay down their guns to watch their favourite teams. That behavior even becomes more pronounced when the national team is on the pitch.

But when someone has to travel to another African country that has no diplomatic representation from the country of origin, and is directed to a former colonial power to decide on the visa request, then something is terribly wrong.

Africa should have a seamless border and travel policy and begin to realize that there is strength in unity and that diversity is not a threat but an added advantage.

Rwanda

Police, Tigo Sign MoU On Crime Detection

Rwanda National Police (RNP) and Tigo-Rwanda, a mobile telecom company, have signed an agreement establishing joint… Read more »

Copyright © 2016 The New Times. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 1,000 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.