Experts and officials from African countries recently gathered in Moscow for the Africa Russia Parliamentary conference, which was held as part of the Russia Africa Summit. The conference was attended by representatives from almost all African countries, and the main message was about creating an Africa that is free from neocolonialism and creating win-win economic relationships between Africa and Russia, without any interference from the West.
Dr Lubinda Haabazoka, an economic expert who attended the conference, said, “The message at the conference was clear. Creating an Africa free from neocolonialism. Creating win-win economic relationships between African and Russia without western interference.”
During the conference, Russia was very clear that it had no problem with Africa dealing with anyone, and condemned others for dictating to Africa who its friends should be. Speaking at the conference, Sergey Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Minister, said, “We consider that African countries are already capable of resolving their problems by themselves. And the era of the Western world dictating everything to Africa should be long gone.”
Most African countries, including Uganda and Kenya, thanked Russia for its role in the liberation struggle. South African Senate speaker, Amos Masondo, who took center stage at the conference, said, “We are grateful for the support of the Soviet Union in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, and the fact that the friendship between Africa and Russia is now being reinforced and being strengthened.”
The conference resolved to create a multipolar world where no one power had a monopoly over other nations. Dr Haabazoka said, “Africa and Russia resolved to create a multipolar world where no one power had monopoly over other nations. The conference condemned the pushing of non-traditional values on African countries as part of an aid package.”
The conference concluded with an address from President Putin, who pledged to work with African partners and take a leading role in ensuring economic sovereignty for Africa. President Putin also pledged to provide free fertiliser to African countries, including Zambia, with Malawi and Zimbabwe already receiving the same. Russia also pledged to provide cheap fuel to Africa in order to reduce energy costs.
President Putin said, “We stand for the development of mutually beneficial relations with all African countries. Our relations with Africa are not a product of geopolitical considerations or any selfish economic interest. We believe that Africa is a promising and long-term partner.”
President Xi Jinping of China also joined Russia during the second day of the conference, and it was clear that a new system is about to be launched where Visa, Swift, and Mastercard will no longer be effective tools for economic sanctions. Dr Haabazoka said, “What is clear from the two powers is that a new system is about to be launched where Visa, Swift, and Mastercard will no longer be effective tools for economic sanctions. Countries like Zimbabwe, which other African countries have failed to economically liberate from sanctions, will now be able to trade efficiently under the BRICS umbrella.”
Dr Haabazoka also urged countries like Zambia to deal with both sides and remain non-aligned to get the best from both sides. Unfortunately, Zambia was not represented at the parliamentary level at the conference.
In conclusion, the Africa Russia Parliamentary conference was an important platform for African countries and Russia to discuss and strengthen their economic ties. With pledges of free fertiliser and cheap fuel, it is clear that Russia is committed to working with its African partners and ensuring economic sovereignty for Africa. The conference also highlighted the need for a multipolar world, where no one power has a monopoly over other nations.