Nevers Mumba calls for a rebranded Africa at a global business conference in South Africa

Dr Mumba addressing the GBR summit
Dr Mumba addressing the GBR summit

MMD President Dr Nevers Mumba says it is time that Africa printed her own business cards and wrote her own books.

Dr Mumba observed that Africa’s challenge has been that someone has written its introduction and painted the world and made the continent buy into it and has limited it for generations.

Dr Mumba was speaking on Friday at the Global Business Roundtable annual conference, Sandton convention centre, Johannesburg, South Africa.

He said Africans have been conformed to the vision its ‘masters’ had carved out for it.

Dr Mumba said Africans need to re-orient itself and re-educate themselves and re-write the educational and history books.

Below is Dr Mumba’s full speech.


Africa is a piece of art pinned on the minds and consciences of art lovers.

Those with money and capacity to buy the paint and pay the painters are the ones who have presented today’s image of Africa to the world.

The way Africa is perceived by both the world and ourselves dictates how Africa performs in the next few years. My assignment today is to highlight the effect of perception on development of a people group. We need to ask the necessary questions. Who painted the current picture of Africa and what was the intent of the resultant piece of art? In whose interest is this picture?

John 19:17-22 defines my point. “… And Pilate wrote a title (introduction) also, and put it on the cross. And there was written, JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.”

Whosever writes your introduction defines you and limits you according to the introduction; Africa has been introduced by others. It is time that Africa printed her own business cards. It is time Africa wrote her own books. It is time for Africa to sing her own songs and paint her own picture.

The Jews did not like the inscription on the cross but Pilate had written it and they could not put it down. Two thousand years later, we still declare that, not only is Jesus the King of the Jews, but he is also the King of Kings. This is the power of introduction.

To subjugate a people, you first have to distort or steal their identity.  You have to mess with their introduction. The type of education you are given determines your ultimate identity. To introduce apartheid here in South Africa and to sustain it for as long as it was sustained, the focus of perpetrators was to hand down the type of education that was intended to keep the black man perpetually oppressed and disadvantaged.

The Minister of Native affairs at the time, the architect of apartheid Hendrik Verwoerd stated that;

“There is no place for the Bantu in the European Community above the level of certain forms of labour… What is the use of teaching the Bantu Child mathematics when he cannot use it in practice?”

They used camera and film to repeatedly distort and brain wash our view of ourselves.

They allowed a few amongst us to stick out like middle fingers in order to divide us into thinking those who had failed to attain those heights were lazy.

Our Challenge:  Some one has written our introduction and painted our world and made us buy into it and has limited us for generations. We have been conformed to the vision our ‘masters’ had carved out for us.
How do we correct this?

Re-orient ourselves.  Re-educate ourselves.  Re-write our educational and history books. Re-think our theology and ideologies. Take responsibility for our future. Re-paint Africa.

We must be free to make our mistakes as we work our way up. We cannot be free until we can experiment ourselves out of this trap.

The apartheid regime began to indoctrinate South African oppressed people by telling them that they were better than the independent states up north in terms of goods and services. It is better to mess up in your efforts to improve yourself than to remain under perpetual control of another!

This is time to initiate Africa’s most ambitious educational project which should include all villages, compounds, suburbs and entire nation states. An educational system which high lights our values as a people.

An educational system which is original and directly responsive to Africa’s unique challenges. An educational system which does not exhort the Queen of England above our own Zulu King. An Education which does not glorify everything done by western powers and rubbishes the efforts being made by our people.  An education which does not segregate based on who has an American accent and who doesn’t.

We must deliberately work towards these goals if indeed Africa is the New Frontier. We must change our curricula and teach more about the Chirundu and Beit bridges than the famous London Bridge.

This project is long term, but must start now. The strategy must be clear and the African Union must incorporate this aspect in their 50 year strategic plan. We must scientifically strategize that the type of Education we offer, the type of religion we teach, the type of films we watch and make of ourselves are shaping a new mindset which shall effectively restore our dignity as a people.

Money poured on paralyzed minds will continue to be wasted in Africa. We must re- paint the continent. We must introduce ourselves to ourselves and to the world.

We must have a goal to score. We may have some of the best players on the pitch, but without a goal we shall not record any victory. When students go to a medical school, we expect to produce Doctors. This is because the studies are specially designed to produce a pre-determined product. Africa must package for itself an educational culture that shall ultimately produce an enviable African, an African of our corporate dream, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the best brains in the world.

Each one of us in this room today, in this generation, have been handed a paint brush and paint,  an opportunity to re-paint the pictures of our individual countries to make up the full piece of art of a new Africa. An Africa which shall be the envy to the world, an Africa free from the stereo-type image of violent ethnic and political conflict, poverty, AIDS and now Ebola, hunger, corruption, bad governance and under-development.
We must re-paint Africa.

We should each ask ourselves the question, now that I have an opportunity in my generation, what picture shall I paint of my country, what shall I do to help birth this new image of my country and contribute to the full beautiful art piece of a new Africa?

In these last few moments, kindly allow me now to paint the picture I have of my own nation of Zambia.

For the investor who is searching for high returns, Zambia offers one of the most liberal economic policies in the SADC region. Zambia offers a 50 year culture of political and social stability.

It is a nation whose borders could only have been designed by a supreme being as the bible says.  A nation with only 14.5 million people known the world over for their warmth, a country  carved out from the centre of the Southern  African region,  a natural hub land-linked  by eight sovereign  nations with their combined populations presenting a huge market for any business, such as motor assembly plants, setting up its headquarters in Zambia.

It is a country of rare beauty, perched on a high plateau of moderate average annual temperatures of 21 Celsius and  annual average rainfall of 1,270 millimeter and one of the most beautiful country-sides of  a typical savanna country with breath-taking rivers and waterfalls like the Victoria Falls,  abundant un-spoilt wildlife.

It is a country with an abundance of most known mineral deposits, the world’s fourth largest producer of copper and holds six percent of the world’s known reserves thereof. It is also the world’s second largest producer of cobalt and holds the reserves of about 350,000 tonnes. Furthermore, Zambia is also famous for the abundance of other mineral deposits, including lead, zinc and gemstones such as emeralds, aquamarine, topaz, opal, agate and amethysts.

It is a country of abundant water resource, with 45 percent of the total water resources of the entire southern African sub-region.

It is a country of large expanses of fertile uncultivated land, a potential bread-basket to feed the entire Southern African region and beyond.

It is a country waiting to be re-painted into one of the most developed nations not only in Africa but in the world,  currently undergoing massive transformation ignited by major infrastructure investment into the roads and bridges to unlock the massive potential of this great Central Southern African country.

I ask the question, what picture do you have of your country, of Africa?  The brush and the paint are now in your hands.

I thank you.

Nevers Sekwila Mumba

Swaziland Minister Lindiwe Dlamini
Swaziland Minister Lindiwe Dlamini
Dr Mumba seated second from left awaiting to address the summit
Dr Mumba seated second from left awaiting to address the summit
Dr Mumba chats with the Chief Justice of South Africa at the GBR Gala Dinner
Dr Mumba chats with the Chief Justice of South Africa at the GBR Gala Dinner


  1. Well pesented Dr Mumba. That’s what I can call ‘Leadership with a vision’. By the way Dr Mumba, which picture do you have for Zambia?

    • Good presentation, Mr. Mumba. Nevertheless, we have ourselves to blame for all the social malaises that our African continent is going through. Yes, movies could’ve brainwashed us but religion as an ideology has had an upper in this process. The subliminal effect of religion has made people accept their earthly conditions as they are for a piece of heaven.

  2. Just check how many Africans will be reading a book on the plane- i.e. the next time you are flying. Says a lot about attitude to acquire and share knowledge. That is also the reason you find that most Africans tend to be mythical as their knowledge base is often limited.

    • I think your way of think bare foot is a bit narrow and old fashioned.You cannot generalise in thinking that all Africans are the same.There are a lot of Africans who are doing better than people in the developed world.It is thinking like yours bare foot with no vision for Africa and a belief that other people are better than us that will not bring progress to Africa.It took UK and USA over 200 years for them to see the fruit of their labour.Africa is on the right path and we will get there.Bravo Dr Nevers!Well delivered speech,you are second to none on the Zambian Political platform.I will continue believing in you until you win the race, you are my president.

    • Totally agree with you Barefoot. It is sad that most Zambian homes do not have books. Zambians tend to invest in DSTV, computer games. Parents don’t read and model for the children. From books one can learn a lot and dispel myths too. We need to cultivate a culture of reading. Half the time we pass on stories that do not add up and we believe them. Knowledge frees!

    • Bravo Dr Nevers!Well delivered speech,you are second to none on the Zambian Political platform.I will continue believing in you until you win the race, you are my president.

  3. Zambians, typical failures.Stop the blame game,Mr Mumba ,Get to work, and show successful results. You don’t have to defend success it talks on its own. Only failures try to go to length to explain/defend their failures or apportion blame like you doing . Next show us what you have done for yourself by using the message you are giving us. Blame blame blame …. where does that get you to? Ok whites came to Africa and defined you, so what did you want them to do if they realized that we couldn’t even define ourselves and very disorganized? Are u saying they should have just assimilated with our undefined people? Lets use the cards we have today and still win. don’t blame the card issuer in a game,use the cards you to still win. We have too many quacks like you ahead of us confusing…


  5. Reminded me of Nevers Mumba of “Zambia shall be saved”. Great speech. We need to stop ‘crying over’ what bazungus did to us. They never came to help us, it was about helping themselves.
    Let’s define our own destiny. This should include our spirituality, our economics, etc. Doomsayers will chant global & stuff, but if we hold our paint brushs properly we will paint ourselves into the global village& not allow anyone do it for us.

  6. Honestly Mumba, after 50 years of independence you are still crying about what the white man did to you; yet you learned from him an easy way of making money by going about as a preacher and getting money from people that were desperate in life and you told them what they wanted to hear. Just how much were you paid to destroy the MMd? or was the money never paid to you? You are a reincarnated Judas Iscariot, now you have the knowledge of the white man, use it constructively.

  7. You may loot at it as blaming but it is not.Personally iI don’t blame whites but you will agree with me that they had role to play in how Africa has turn out to be. They told us how inferior we were, factors of production and not people. The constant repetition of such statements created a mental bondage one which we need to break. Bob Marley said emancipation of mental slavery. That’s what we need to do. It’s a wake up call! Well put Dr. Mumbai.

    • It’s sad that you actually believe that. But you have every right to be ignorant. Try living by “donations’ and see how much you can accomplish, let alone who will give you your donations then compare your life to Nevers, you don’t have who it takes. You don’t have to like the man, but have respect otherwise you too will attract disrespect. Does everyone have to be a businessman? Was Martin Luther King a business man, was Ghandi, Mandela? Open your kind my brother, we can all contribute to this beautiful nation irrespective of your expertise, yourself included.

  8. At such a conference you speak about how you have changed lives through your business acumen. Not rhetorical statements copied from some publications. Mumba has failed to run a once vibrant Party, and yet he is talking about rebranding Africa. Lack of class!!!

  9. Apparently the speech has guilted some unreasonable fuuls into attack mode. I wonder if they even took time to read the whole article.

  10. I have not read what he said but let me remind everyone that one time Dr Mumba preached a message from Namibia that we are not a third world. But the truth is that we are still a third world with people still preferring to trade on streets than in the markets and with filthy everywhere and electricity rationing in almost every African country.

    • My brother that’s why we call them leaders. They see the future in present time, they invite us and motivate us to wake up from slumber and take hold of our future. They speak of it until it’s existence is present. Martin Luther King Jr. Saw a day when Obama would have a shot at the presidency in the darkest hour but today we honour him for having faith and foresight. We thank you Dr. Mumba asking us to elevate our minds, the bodily experience is always last, don’t over invest in it.

  11. I first didn’t take to the article, thinking what NSM could possibly contribute to rebranding of the African continent, and read it reluctantly at first. But now I’m glad I read it, as it have given me a potential theme for my masters thesis. Reminds me of Alvin Toffler:
    “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn. ”

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