OUTGOING British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s views on British colonialism and race should have been a clear indication that he never really cared about the continent. In fact, the outgoing British PM is on record for saying that colonialism in Africa should never have ended and vehemently dismissed Britain’s role in slavery.
He made these comments in an article that was published in weekly British magazine The Spectator on February 2 2002.
‘The continent may be a blot, but it is not a blot upon our conscience. The problem is not that we were once in charge, but that we are not in charge any more,’ Johnson wrote, according to an IOL report.
Johnson went on further to write: ‘The best fate for Africa would be if the old colonial powers, or their citizens, scrambled once again in her direction; on the understanding that this time they will not be asked to feel guilty.’
‘The fact that a man who holds these pure racist and derogatory opinions on Africa and colonisation managed to rise to the highest office in the UK doesn’t surprise me, in fact, it speaks volume of his very own party, the Conservative Party, who has a history of being racist towards minority groups,’ says IOL’s Chad Williams.
In May 2022, a Conservative Party member who sent a racist email to the Patrick Brown leadership campaign resigned his membership, ending the party’s investigation into the matter.
According to reports, the former party member expressed support for Nazism and Adolf Hitler and made racist remarks about several ethnic groups in the email which was sent to the Brown campaign, after the campaign denounced the racist ‘white replacement’ conspiracy theory in an email.
‘Johnson, along with many other former colonial leaders in Europe can apologise all they want, but they need to do the right thing, and return all the jewels and minerals that their countries forefathers stole. That is but a tiny start to restitution, the restitution Africa deserves,’ says Williams.
Johnson recently came under fire for his plan to send refugees back to Africa, Rwanda specifically, with Prince Charles reportedly even describing the migrant deal as ‘appalling’.
Under the Asylum Partnership Agreement (APA) signed in April 2022 by the United Kingdom and Rwanda governments, asylum seekers arriving in the UK illegally may be transferred to Rwanda, which will process the claims.
If the asylum is granted, under the UK-Rwanda deal refugees will be encouraged to stay in the African country for at least five years.
Both leaders hoped to benefit from the UK-Rwanda deal: with Johnson insisting the deal was to discourage illegal refugees from crossing the English Channel, while Rwandan President Paul Kagame counts on monetary and political windfalls for his country.