French President Emmanuel Macron Bids to Boost Influence on a State Visit to Africa
The President of France is this week scheduled for a state visit to Africa to boost the flagging of the French influence on the African continent. He is also set to convince young Africans who are eying a future in Europe that France would be their best bet.
The first tour by the president is set to begin on Tuesday, and he is expected to visit Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso which happen to be former French colonies. He is also planned to visit Ghana. This comes amidst efforts by the European Union to control the flow of immigrants entering Europe through the Mediterranean Sea without exposing them to human traffickers. In countries like Libya, these immigrants face rape, torture and are even sold out into slavery as recently shown by CNN.
The French president will also be looking for backing on the international front for the new counter-terrorism force comprising of five nations. France is planning to lead the force in the fight against Islamist fighters in the Sahel region. He will also stress that he wants a partnership with African countries on an equal basis rather than with African nations taking a subordinate role. This partnership will promote entrepreneurship and education as well as the lead in the fight against the disease, famine, and illiteracy in the continent.
At 39, Macron is the youngest president ever to take the instruments of power in France, and he is taking advice from a group of young business entrepreneurs. These young businessmen of African descent are advising Macron on how to improve his country’s image in the continent.
Macron is also on a mission to reconcile the controversial remarks he made about the continent this summer. The president had made a statement that the African continent had civilization problems. He said this statement while diagnosing the democratic, demographic and security challenges facing the continent. He also went on record accusing African women of having too many children as a challenge.
The new president of Burkina Faso, Roch Marc Christian Kabore has proposed for a resent in relations between the two countries based on mutual interest, equality, and respect. Burkina Faso blames the French government for helping the ousted leader Blaise Campaore run into exile in Ivory Coast and avoid justice for the atrocities he committed including the murder of Thomas Sankara. France is also facing growing pressure to extradite Campaore’s brother Francois who was arrested in Paris last month.
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