• 30 Degree
  • Serrekunda
#Headline Stories

Berlin hosts Conference on Strengthening Democracy in Africa, G7

Dakar, Senegal –  The German Foundation for Africa and partners recently held a conference on strengthening democracy in Africa and the G7 Countries.

The two-day event held on September 26-27 at Germany’s Federal Foreign Office in Berlin was characterized with lively debates on the theme: “How to deal with the increasing systemic competition and external influence in Africa and what conclusions to draw for German foreign policy.”

The conference was jointly organized by German Institute for International and Security Affairs.

Representing Timbuktu Institute of Dakar at the conference, Mrs Adji Awa Samb, Timbuktu’s senior officer responsible for Cooperation and Regional projects had her take during the debate which revolved around questions like – which opportunities and risks does the increasing global systemic competition entails for Africa-Europe relations.

Responding to the question above, Mrs Adji remarked: “First of all, we must take into account a new fact: Today, the situation has changed and Africa will no longer have only a passive role. For at least three reasons: First, we are in a divided world in which the alignments are both multiple and diffuse.”

“ Second, we are in a world where the distribution of power is very fragmented with the combined effect of classic powers that are declining, emerging powers that are rising, and a multitude of states that are claiming middle power status.”

Therefore, she continued, “we can no longer see this competition as a simple competition between powers. We must take into account this situation which also gives Africa the opportunity to choose and diversify its partners.”

According to her, the strong presence of China, the return of Russia, the Gulf States and also Turkey should not be overlooked.

Turning her attention to the other question: how should Germany adjust its communication policy in Africa when it comes to the activities of other external powers?, Mrs Adji highlighted some points.

” The situation has really changed, we are in the configuration that allows us to talk about off-shore balancing. This is the mechanism by which the great classical powers ensure that the strategic shift of the African continent has an impact on the balance of power at the international level,” she observed.

“ In Africa, Germany, especially in the last Merkel years, has freed itself from European tutelage and has asserted itself as a power with its own African policy, particularly in the Sahel. It has played a major role on two levels: militarily alongside Europe, but especially in development.

Germany does not suffer from the image of a colonial power in the Sahel. It can continue to emphasize partnership instead of domination,” Mrs. Adji reiterated.

Meanwhile, she went on to look at other question like – What are the implications of the changing global order for Germany’s existing instruments and partnerships with African countries and regional organisations?.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *