Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Konaré rebukes Sarkozy

A spat has erupted between African Union head Alpha Oumar Konaré and French president Nicolas Sarkozy. The Namibian newspaper has a good resumé of the debate.

Sarkozy asked university students in Dakar, "Do you want to end the arbitrary corruption, violence? That money is invested instead of being embezzled. Do you want the rule of law? It is up to you to take the decision and if you decide so, France will be by your side like an unwavering friend."

This, of course, would be a first for France in Africa.

Konaré hit back at the condescending attitude of the French leader. The AU chief said he agreed with Sarkozy on corruption, violence and immigration, 'young people are aware of that and many of them have been fighting these things for a long time'.

A top leader in the French Socialist Party attacked Sarkozy for giving patronizing lectures to Africans on development while at the same time 'stealing Africa's best minds through the policy of selective immigration'.

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