Excerpt ~ Human Rights: A Political and Cultural Critique

April 3, 2012

Elsewhere on the African continent, mission-educated men took power as Africa emerged from direct European colonial rule. The list is long. Leopold Senghor, the first president of Senegal, now a member of the Academie Francaise, is a former seminarian and a leading Catholic intellectual. The late Felix Houphouet-Boigny, the Ivorian president who constructed the world’s largest Catholic basilica in the country’s interior, was obviously another devout Catholic. Others have similar backgrounds: Julius Nyerere was Catholic, Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia was Presbyterian and General Ignatius Acheampong of Ghana had been born into a Catholic family. With the possible exception of the king of Swaziland, the head of one of the few African states that predate colonialism, to my knowledge there is no African leader who openly professes traditional religions.

Human Rights: A Political and Cultural Critique
Makau W. Mutua

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