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Kole Omotoso (1943-2023): A Chemistry Of Fiction And Faction



Dele Jegede In Conversation With Prince Yemisi Shyllon
Prof. Toyin Falola

By Toyin Falola

Within the field of African literature, the famous figure of Professor Kole Omotoso stands out as a luminary, exemplifying extraordinary intellectual acumen, firm ethical convictions, and steadfast devotion to advancing the welfare of society. He is seen as a figure who illuminates the way for others. My deepest condolences go out to the family, friends, and colleagues of this remarkable Nigerian author and professor, whose passing at 80 has left a legacy that will be felt for a long time in the world of literature and beyond. We were separated by two houses at the campus of the Obafemi Awolowo University, and I knew his late wife and three children in the 1980s. He supported my projects, most notably The Encyclopedia of the Yoruba, to which he contributed an entry and money for its free distribution.  

Prof.Kole Omotoso

Professor Omotoso is a highly esteemed scholar in the field of African Literature. He established himself as a prominent figure within the literary community by demonstrating extraordinary knowledge of various literary genres, showing competency as a playwright and essayist, in addition to his noteworthy achievements as a novelist. His writing abilities are readily apparent in his significant works, such as the books The Edifice, The Combat, and Just Before Dawn, on which I was privileged to have organized a Workshop. Each piece of his work thoroughly analyses the human condition by digging into topics such as personal identity, cultural dynamics, and the intricacies inherent in post-colonial African society.

In addition to his literary accomplishments, the quality that most distinguished him was his unshakeable commitment to maintaining his moral integrity. Professor Omotoso believed that the formation of human identity should be based on ethical standards, and he demonstrated these ideals by committing himself with unflinching determination. His writing was always infused with a powerful sense of integrity and conviction, which made them powerful catalysts for the development of society.

Throughout his life, Professor Omotoso was a zealous champion for folks on the periphery of society. As a result, he was looked up to as an inspirational figure by succeeding generations of authors and thinkers. Amid oppressive ideologies and authoritative governance, he courageously spoke the truth to those in positions of power. He did not fear the potential repercussions, aligning himself with the general populace to facilitate constructive transformations. His dedication to social justice was clear from his writings and his active participation in initiatives to support underrepresented communities and further values of fairness and impartiality. This made his commitment to social justice more obvious than it would have been otherwise.

Professor Omotoso exuded a sense of infectious confidence because he was convinced that his work ought to be self-explanatory. This belief was the source of his self-assurance. His literary works provided enjoyment and information, posed challenges to prevalent social problems, and pushed for a more just and equitable society. One of his most notable contributions to the field of African literature was his participation in the compilation of the anthology Modern African Literature, in which he collaborated with other esteemed writers. These efforts contributed to establishing African literary discourse as a canonical body of knowledge, which was one of his goals during these endeavours.

Professor Omotoso established himself as a prominent figure and an influential member of his social circle by taking a pragmatic approach to drawing attention to his actions, or lack thereof. He made a conscious decision to forego the pursuit of monetary fortune, focusing his energy on maximizing the transformative potential of his writing instrument rather than accumulating wealth for himself. Respect and reverence were bestowed upon him by those who had the good fortune to become acquainted with him because of his devotion to his values.

Professor Omotoso’s dedication to equality and fairness exceeded academic considerations. Omotoso fostered a spirit of camaraderie and generosity by cultivating robust interpersonal connections with individuals across various hierarchies. As a result, those with whom he connected were profoundly and indelibly impacted by this spirit. His compelling pedagogical style was an inspiration for a large number of students, which helped to establish him as a beloved mentor for aspiring authors and thinkers. Also, his genuine dedication to providing attentive support and doling out excellent advice further cemented his role in this capacity.

Professor Omotoso’s literary works are potent representations of his firm commitment to bringing about positive social change, and they function in this capacity admirably. He demonstrated a dual position within society, acting as a sharp observer and an involved participant. He also used his literary skills and works to advocate transformative measures, question prevalent norms, and stimulate constructive undertakings. His words have been an inspiration to a great number of people, and his thoughts will continue to provoke profound reflection and contemplation in the minds of readers all over the world.

Transcending territorial boundaries, Professor Omotoso’s literary skill has earned him acclaim and respect on a global scale. His works have been published in several countries, surpassing the bounds of geography and earning broad recognition and respect from readers worldwide. International fame was bestowed upon him due to the excellent ways he portrayed the complexity of human nature and African culture in his writing. The penetration of his literary works allowed the promotion of African literature to a wider spectrum of readers, enabling individuals from various cultural backgrounds to actively interact with his enthralling narrative.

Professor Omotoso rose to fame as a highly sought-after presenter at several global literary gatherings, academic conferences, and cultural festivals due to the growing acknowledgement of his achievements. His captivating narrative style and astute analysis of societal issues kept readers and listeners interested in what he had to say. By participating in these exchanges, he developed connections with authors and academics from different countries, thereby cultivating an international network of intellectual luminaries who shared the same goal of fostering intercultural comprehension and achieving societal change.

Notably, Professor Omotoso’s efforts to promote the transmission of African literature on an international scale played a significant part in increasing his admiration within the greater global literary community. He successfully challenged the prevalent Western-centric perspective on literature through his written works. In doing so, he expanded the intellectual horizons of global readers by demolishing preconceptions connected with Africa and ending misconceptions about the continent. In addition to his role as a professor, he played a substantial and pioneering part in the academic research field of African literature. His contributions have been both significant and groundbreaking. As a result of his extensive understanding of African oral traditions and the merging of those traditions with written literature, he produced powerful works that significantly altered the academic discussion. 

Professor Omotoso’s scholarly works and literary compositions delve into the complicated interplay between culture, language, and literature. They illuminate the profound importance of language as a formidable instrument for preserving cultural legacy and articulating individual identity. His analysis in his writings highlighted the intricate interrelationships between literary texts and socio-cultural situations, offering a better understanding of common literary practices in Africa. 

During his work as a teacher to many students, he was an example worthy of emulation, encouraging an emerging generation of academics to become involved with African literature. His scholarly contributions went beyond the scope of his research pursuits; therefore, he significantly impacted the academic world. This, in turn, was a factor in establishing a family tree of academics committed to investigating the complex and varied parts of the literary heritage of the African continent. Professor Omotoso’s literary works captivated readers and permeated various art forms. As a result, they have contributed to enhancing popular culture and elicited innovative responses from audiences. His engaging narratives have been brought to life through lively enactments in several literary works.

Furthermore, Professor Omotoso’s body of work has motivated contemporary artists, musicians, and visual producers to attempt to capture his narratives’ essential ideas and motifs within their creative mediums. The tales he constructed were a backdrop for intellectually stimulating artistic renditions about issues such as personal identity, societal equity, and the enduring strength of the human spirit.

Professor Omotoso’s work evolved significantly throughout his career, echoing the shifts that have taken place in the literary world and the social environment through which his narratives have been analyzed. The author’s earlier works garnered praise from reviewers for their insightful assessment of Nigerian society and their captivating representation of diverse characters attempting to navigate the difficulties of a post-colonial setting. These aspects of his work were particularly lauded. As he proceeded to investigate the complexities surrounding identity and cultural heritage issues, he gained recognition for his ability to successfully reconcile the contrast between traditional and modern components. This capacity served the purpose of highlighting the universal character of human experiences, which transcended cultural boundaries.

Professor Omotoso’s literary style underwent a discernible evolution as he progressed down his career path, gradually becoming more nuanced and including elements of experimentalism in the process. His works displayed a tremendous command of the English language, adopting intricate literary strategies to effectively transmit deeper levels of relevance. Critics have praised Omotoso’s talent for evoking a range of feelings through evocative imagery and poetic language. This has helped establish him as a leading figure in literary history renowned for his profound intellect and refined artistic sensibilities. His distinctive literary voice garnered increased attention and admiration due to the expansion of society’s ideas on African literature. Due to his propensity to challenge preexisting standards and experiment with alternative narrative structures, he was often regarded as a seminal figure in the history of literary innovation. This forward-thinking approach to African storytelling broadened the minds of aspiring authors and provided them with new paths to investigate, which enlarged their horizons.

As we reflect on the passing of this towering figure in the world of writing, we are compelled to realize the huge void that his passing has left within the world of literature and among those who were fortunate enough to have known him. His life and efforts have unquestionably left a positive legacy that has impacted our globe and will continue to impact future generations. This is a legacy that will endure for generations to come. Professor Omotoso’s excellent contributions have not only improved the field of literature but have also served as a source of inspiration for meeting the many problems that can be found in the world with an amazing level of bravery.

By remembering the life of Professor Omotoso, I am paying tribute to the one whose ideas and principles will continue to profoundly impact intellectual and emotional spheres into the foreseeable future. His significant contributions to literature, his dedication to advancing social fairness, and the mentoring provided to aspiring intellectuals have left an indelible mark on the literary conversation in Africa and beyond. For all of us, his literary legacy will continue to serve as a wellspring of motivation and illumination, and we pray that his soul will rest in eternal peace.


Kole, your tent pitched with the great

lined up with Petronius,

unravelling communal senses,

beating common sense into towers high.

So, the apex would mumble to beat back,

repairing the town or tuning you out of it.


Omotoso, keeper of the collective wisdom.

Well-laid down like Ifa,

provoking, invoking, and unveiling metamorphosis;

that could drive Africa to the coast of Olokun and Olosa,

bringing coveted hope, faith, and fate


Through ink-stained nights, rays from glass-stained windows

a golden heart and parchment’s grace,

you weave a tapestry of the human race,

and of Africa, of its giant and the rainbow nation

With quill in hand, scrolls allayed, and dreams in sight,

a vision and path, clear, bold, and right you crafted.

You spoke to the soul of the Giant of Africa,

Planting seeds on its soil to quicken it.

Told its crippling wills and limbs,

Of silent stories vast, and of salient hopes that feed

The minds of millions, young and old,

to hold the head to work the body.


Bankole Omotoso, your Baba named you well,

He saw the vision of a jewel social builder,

Building the mind, the town, and Africa.

You are an African pride evidenced by scrolls,

By your art, you called the world, and it marvelled


The Yebo Gogo man in the heart of the Rainbow Nation,

Painted joy, imagination, and theatrics,

Engaging the freedom calls,

The streets’ salutations,

And the limp for hope.


Just before dawn,

They say the darkest hour prevails.

But you, an epitome of hope of the dawn to come

Have left just before the dawn

You raised the dusk

And disappeared in the midst of this dark


From this plane, you have transcended,

But Kole, you have scrolled the fireflies,

Lighting our paths through these darks


Your ship might have sailed at Cape Town

But from the crust of the Soweto,

Through Johannesburg and the surge of Lagos,

To the cradles of Akure, where it all began,

Your footprints are evident even on the rocks

Good Night, Yebo Gogo Man.


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Moral Values In A Changing World



Prof. Hope Eghagha

By Hope O’Rukevbe Eghagha

JUSTICE: This world has degenerated into abysmal filth, immoral ungodly concupiscence, infantile greed, atavistic, primitive acquisition of property, and satanic hopelessness! The judiciary, the political class, the church, our royal fathers, and most other socio-cultural institutions have fallen into the cesspit of indiscipline and lack of respect for ethics! The Labour movement that used to be in the forefront of discipline cannot be trusted anymore!

MARIAM: Hehehehehehe! Okpoyibo! Big grammar is talking. I must invite Hon Patrick Obahiagbon to compete with you on explosive vocabulary.

PROFESSOR: That’s an old song. Our parents said the same thing some forty odd years ago.

UMUKORO: You are right; it is the way of the old to berate the world and say the past was better!

JUSTICE: Kindly don’t reduce the profundity of my introspective submission to the jejune level of the banal as has been the hallmark of pseudo-intellectuals in the polity!

MARIAM: I am going to get a new and bigger dictionary. I can’t find Michael West anymore!

JUSTICE: If you still restrict yourself to the archaic confines of Michael West, then you are a victim of historical detention, arrested development, and exploration of the brave new world!

MARIAM: I give up!

UMUKORO: Who still uses a dictionary in the 21st century? Ask Google my dear, ask Google!

JUSTICE: Your infantile and rudimentary knowledge of homonyms limits your capacity to process thoughts of the new century. Away with you, thou physically beautiful body without an intellectual soul. I take exception to people denigrating my exceptionally brilliant exegesis on the state of Homo sapiens!

PASTOR: ‘And in the last days, iniquity shall abound and the love of many shall wax cold’, so said the Master. The time is here!

PROFESSOR: A broken record! A broken record waxed hundreds of years ago!

PASTOR: But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved!

PROFESSOR: Saved from what? Another holocaust? Another atomic bomb dumped on humanity?

PASTOR: Do you spurn sacred and biblical prophecies?

PROFESSOR: General prophecies mean nothing to me. Look here Mr Pastor. For all the false prophecies which members of your infernal gang of profiteering pastors gave before the last general elections, you should be behind the bars of God!

JUSTICE: It is not late, not too late at all. The hounds of heaven are waiting for all the false pastors, especially those who have commercialized the Lord’s work! A wonderful and abominable thing is happening in the land. The prophets prophesy falsely, and the people love it so!

PROFESSOR: One preacher I knew used to say that one false prophet was more dangerous than 100 armed robbers. Now I understand why!

UMUKORO: Armed robbery is no longer fashionable. Pen robbery fetches millions of naira with one stroke. Just add two zeros to the figure or transfer public funds to a private account.

PROFESSOR: I spoke metaphorically!

PASTOR: When it is becoming fashionable for persons of the same gender to marry and be recognized by the state, then the world is coming to an end.

UMUKORO: Sodom and Gomorrah incurred God’s wrath with that abomination!


MARIAM: When Supreme Court judges dispense political justice, then the end of the state as we knew it, has come.

UMUKORO: Even in America! Democratic judges give judgment guided by the so-called liberal values of the democrats while republican judges give conservative verdicts like abolishing the right to having an abortion!

JUSTICE: What then is justice?

MARIAM: Self solution! Your name is justice!

PROFESSOR: Aren’t we mixing oranges and apples in the same basket?

PASTOR: Let the tares and the wheat grow. At the harvest the Lord shall do the separation of sheep from goats!

JUSTICE: Eschatological metaphors can be used to rationalize and explain currents and undercurrents of contemporary events. It is very convenient to do so!

PROFESSOR: I am disappointed that our Nobel laureate could make such a one-sided pronouncement on the 2023 general elections. Unlike him, he didn’t speak like a man who comprehends the totality of our traumatic experience in February 2023!

MARIAM: But he spoke his mind. The Constitution guarantees freedom of expression!

JUSTICE: He spoke with the finality of a judge. I respect him for that. But he should also like an elder have acknowledged the level of rigging and violence which marred the exercise. The general thinking is that he is silent on that aspect because a friend of his now occupies Aso Rock!

MARIAM: That is a most uncharitable thing to say about a man of such intellectual distinction and moral probity!

JUSTICE: Excuse me! Has he occupied any public office in the country to enable you to arrive at that conclusion? Has he been tested?

MARIAM: His name is a shield. His name travels before him.

JUSTICE: Why did he wait for the PEPT to make a pronouncement before proclaiming his tigritude?

PROFESSOR: Let’s leave that old man alone jor! I’m more interested in the shuffling feet at the CBN. What exactly is going on? Was there no due diligence before Shonubi was asked to act as Governor of the Central bank of Nigeria? Didn’t they know, couldn’t they have suspected that he was part of the rot that ran that institution aground in the dying days of the former president?

PASTOR: Alas, it has given the president the opportunity to appoint his own man as governor. The new man by all account is competent and exposed in the financial world!

PROFESSOR: My only worry is whether he will have the gumption to say no if he receives obnoxious directives from his boss.

JUSTICE: How many appointees in our country have the liver to say no to the indiscretion of their bosses? It is not in our DNA!

MARIAM: In Lagos state, the Speaker of House said no to the governor on the appointment of some commissioners! The heavens did not fall.

PROFESSOR: The heavens almost fell. But that speaker is arrogant. No big man can trust him. Or was he dancing to music being played in higher quarters to spite the governor?

MARIAM: Who knows! It is possible. The ways of politicians are not straightforward. How could he say that he and the governor are colleagues! He has no respect for the office!

UMUKORO: I felt sorry for the governor! This attempt to humiliate him all in the name of politics.

JUSTICE: I hear it is all about 2024. If he is thinking of becoming governor, that statement will return to haunt him in future!

PASTOR: Now! Now! Now! Is the Dubai visa ban still hanging over us or Mr. President got the desert kings to lift the embargo?

JUSTICE: Is there any ‘gbajue’ going on?

PROFESSOR: Hahahahahaha! The more you look, the less you see. Proverbs to bones and silence!

UMUKORO: I don’t think it is ‘gbajue! It is possible that there was an agreement in principle which would require Nigeria to finetune certain details before going public. A federal government cannot tell lies about such public matters!

PASTOR: When the saviour comes, let him that be on the rooftop not come down to be saved. You will run to the mountain and the mountain will be melting!

MARIAM: And the sea will be boiling!

PROFESSOR: Who will save us? Who can take the nation back to factory reset? Shall we invite Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Gen. Aguiyi Ironsi, and Ahmadu Bello to rescue us?

PASTOR: Perish such thoughts please! Those men have not been able to save themselves. How can they save anybody? Jesus Christ is the answer!

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A Response To Toyin Falola’s Obasanjo, Obadide And Obajoko



Former President Olusegun Obasanjo

By Yinka Agbetuyi

Toyin Falola’s “Obasanjo, Obadide and Obajoko” is a timely article that captures the complexities and contradictions of a Yoruba (even Nigerian) in transition. It reframes the questions: ‘transition to where?’ How will this transition be better managed? Until these two questions are adequately resolved Yorubaland (and Nigeria) will always be in constant crises.

    It is very important that the essay brings out the fact of extant kingships alongside modern polities in Europe like the UK and Belgium, (there are still twelve extant monarchies in Europe) where the monarchs are not subordinated to modern politicians and humiliated thereby. So which West are the Yoruba (and Nigerians) copying?  Newfound lands, mainly the US – as well as Australia and Canada- stolen from the aborigines.

    Yoruba people and fellow Nigerians must constantly be reminded that the success of the anticolonial struggles was about stopping such occurrence in Africa.  Perhaps Yoruba Nation advocacy was geared toward the same goal, but lacked effective strategies. At the last stop before Tinubu’s unexpected victory, the groundswell was for Yoruba Nation advocates to go into partnership with other Nigerian ethnic nationalities and evolve a workable blueprint that takes into consideration each group’s preference and the rate of and speed of integration into the totality – the North’s preference at independence, and Awo’s true federalism- supplanted unfortunately by the adoption of an American presidential federalist model, hook line and sinker!  My reaction over the decades is that Nigeria is not necessarily vying with others for the position of the 51st state of the US.

    In my own summation in diverse forums, as it exists now in Europe, the royal houses should be clearly delimited and given definite CONSTITUTIONAL roles and worthy remuneration. First Class traditional rulers should earn the same salaries as sitting governors (Nigeria can afford this option many times over from a mere fraction of its stolen wealth if recovered). Monarchs will in turn underwrite the integrity of the polity by being constitutionally tasked with the appointment of auditors who will scrutinise State spending (states and federal) and projects in their domains and report directly back to such MONARCHS for onward transmission to state chief executives and the presidency.

    Traditional rulers should be elected and appointed only by traditional councils and their appointment signed into law (but not subject to nor subordinated to) the state governors.  After all the days of crass illiterate caricature of traditional rulers is long gone.  Traditional rulers should therefore be structured as parallel instruments of and facilitators of governance in a check and balance structuration of governance, in a carefully integrated whole to achieve total governance – the transient and the permanent. Lesser traditional rulers should be administered by the First-Class rulers (in council) who will recommend their emoluments, (and functions) subject to rankings to state governments.

    Only First-Class rulers (in council) should be able to recommend the creation and elevation of lower ranked rulers to the states according to the existing norms of such communities, (they did this well enough in the precolonial days) and the state government should only administratively approve or reject such recommendations based on financial contingencies. This formulation should neutralise party politicking in the creation and maintenance of traditional rulership.

    Yes, traditional rulers must be constitutionally barred from seeking and accepting contracts from their states of origin and from the federal government, the same way a governor is not notionally entitled to be awarded a contract by their own government.  In the British system, this is called declaration of interests by parliamentarians (whether in government or not) in the register of interest book.  This is to prevent conflict of interests of the person in government (and their associates) and their official duties.  This provision demonstrates that greed is a universal phenomenon unless and until checked by relevant laws (witness the UK Parliament’s expenses claim scandal in 2010.)

    Now that the Tinubu struggle has been fought and won, the Yoruba Nation advocates, must in continuation of their activities not rest their oars on the ship of State, but intensify such by taking the lead in the quest for this new reality, by reaching out to like minded nationalities across the country to achieve the constitutional change for a better, stable and prosperous tomorrow for Nigerians.

Prince Agbetuyi is a Professor of Comparative Arts & World History at the Edutronix Institute, London.


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Use Your Penis: Hopes, Expectations And Realities Of African Migrants In Europe



The panelists at the event.

By Leo Igwe

The issue of migration to Europe has been in the news. There has been intense discussion on how to tackle the flow of migrants to, not from, Europe. There have been reports of boats carrying migrants capsizing or missing on the Mediterranean Sea. Many Africans have died trying to enter Europe via the Sahara desert. North African and European countries have taken measures to curb illegal migration and human trafficking. Still, the migration flow out of Africa continues and shows no signs of abating. Why has the migration of Africans or migration from Africa become such a huge problem? What are the hopes, experiences and realities of these migrants?

In August I was invited to speak at a seminar on migration. The focus was on the migration of Africans to Europe. The event took place in Bergen, Norway. As a doctoral student, I lived in Germany for six years. I was invited to speak at programs on migration. Governmental and nongovernmental agencies in Denmark and Germany organized the events. I did not find these events interesting because the focus was on human trafficking and the role of African juju and witchcraft. Do not get me wrong. Human trafficking is a huge problem and needs to be addressed. But we have to tackle the problem from the root. These events were by my estimate a complete waste of time and money because organizers and participants were not ready to tell themselves the truth, face the facts and address the real issue. They want to make themselves feel good and privileged while talking about these helpless Africans streaming to their shores. Organizers were more interested in marginal voodoo, and oath-taking issues. They made it seem as if there was something unusual about African migration. But there was not. Migration is as old as human beings. Humans from all races and regions have been migrating from one region to another, from one country or continent to another. Before this recent wave of migration out of Africa, people from Europe, America, and Asia have been migrating to Africa. They are still migrating for business, social, economic, religious, and political reasons.

Contemporary African migration is mainly economic. It is driven by poverty, miserable living conditions, and the devastation of African economies by European, Asian, and American companies. To tackle the problem of migration, African economies must be fixed. The continent must realize an economic leap. Now instead of focusing on the economic roots of the problem and how to address them, many Europeans and Americans expend energy discussing trivialities, such as the role of voodoo and so-called powerful witch doctors in Nigeria. Well, at these events, I told the organizers the bitter truth. I told them to forget this juju or voodoo talk and face the reality: the destruction and revival of African economies. I told the organizers what they did not want to hear. And they never invited me back.

But this time around it was different. The organizers were not Europeans or Americans. A Nigerian student at the University of Bergen staged the event. He contacted me some months ago, drawing my attention to the plight of African migrants in Norway. He explained how many who travel to Norway and other European countries had their hopes and expectations dashed. Many who migrate to this country or other European countries end up entrapped. They are compelled to go into things they did not plan to do. Many migrants end up in a new form of slavery, in a marriage to a European citizen. Left with the option of going back to Africa at the end of their study or marrying to get the documents to stay, many end up contracting a marriage, in many cases a paper or document marriage. These marriages entrap them, they turn these migrants into errand boys and girls. Many of them are mistreated. They suffer silently. If they misbehaved, their partners would threaten to report them to the authorities and get them deported. I was told that many in the African migrant communities were not helping matters. Someone told me that he approached some migrants seeking and wanting to know how he could navigate migration issues. But the person told him: “Use your penis”. I guess for a female it would have been a case of: Use your vagina. While studying in Germany, some African migrants told me how they were sexually exploited, and dehumanized before they could get legal documents to stay in the country. One woman told me that everyman who wanted to help her wanted to sleep with her.

So, the program was cathartic. It provided a space to let out these pains, sufferings, disappointments, and frustrations.

The event brought together ‘free-will’ migrants and Norwegians. The panelists were from Ghana, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Belarus. I was the only international guest on the panel. Other panelists discussed the hurdles that they have faced, and the challenges that they confronted trying to live and integrate in Norway. As one panelist noted, many who come to study were unable to find a job at the end of their program. In many cases, they graduated and found out that there was no job for them, or they were unable to speak the local language, which was a requirement for many jobs. Another panelist from Ghana, married to a Norwegian, discussed her challenges as a migrant parent in Norway. She recounted how her child had suffered racism in the school. She narrated an experience where the child did a group assignment with four other white Norwegian children. And the teacher gave her child four marks for the assignment and other group members five marks.

There was some discussion on illegal migration and the risks involved. Some Norwegians in the audience noted that many African migrants knew about the risks they could face migrating to Europe. And still, they decided to embark on the risky journey. There was a lot of focus on migrants and their experiences traveling from Africa. However, little or no attention was paid to the European connection with the problem, the fact that western foreign economic policies have devastating effects on African economies. Africa is a market for Western goods including Norwegian stockfish. Apparently Europe needs African markets not African migrants. Western multinationals are relentlessly plowing and plundering the resources of Africa in ways that have displaced the local populations. African professionals are leaving in droves. They are migrating to work in the West and the Middle East. So, Western economies profit from the migration flow and the cheap labor it provides. Western countries benefit from the economic status quo that has turned Africans into migrants and refugees in Europe and America. To contain the flow of migrants to Europe, the situation in Africa must change. African economies must begin to grow and improve. Western governments must end the economic exploitation of Africa.

Dr. Igwe directs the Advocacy for Alleged Witches.

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