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Order#: 529175 Topic: Thomas Sankara the upright man review This is a documentary by a British filmmaker Robin Shuffield on the life and achievements of Thomas Sankara: 1. Introduction: A leader who proclaimed that his country had no obligation to repay debt to international banks and to their former rulers of the country, not only deserves to be the top man to govern the destiny of the country, but he must also be given the post of Governor of the World Bank and he should be vested with powers to recommend similar steps for all the countries that suffered the colonial rule…
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Download file to see previous pages Do not expect any change of heart from such powers; their circumstances might have changed and their position to defensive at present. Thomas Sankara’s mind must be thinking on similar lines when he thought of self-reliant economy and he was averse to receive loans from the World Bank. He did not want any traces of colonial empowerment in his land. His acts of promotion of local food and textile production are a precedent-shattering commercial move, which gave great fillip to rural employment and provided recognition and status to the local artisans. That was a leader who had confidence in himself and in the capacity of his people to build the nation. The scene in the movie when I saw the how local African textile designs was encouraged was great. Not only his country, but the entire African Continent had a leader worth the whole-hearted support. 2. What men and women in a country that owns newly tasted independence want is confidence—the feeling that they are being cared for and their voice is being heard in the new set up. Sankara was a great psychologist, besides being a man with the practical vision. He hit the right spot when he addressed the poor peasantry of the Nation and outlawed compulsory payments and labor (a sort of a bonded labor) to village chiefs. Rural poll tax was done away with. His most daring step in the tradition-fearing and male dominated African Society was to promote gender equality by outlawing polygamy and female circumcision. He often appeared in media to announce his popular measures. How women must have felt elated when he instructed the men to do shopping so that women had enough time as home makers. Some of his progressive measures were, the extraordinary immunization program, building new railway lines and public housing building programs. Literacy initiatives got a strong push, he addressed the issue of river blindness seriously and his most important measure—hard steps against corruption in the administration, was the master-stroke and this well-meaning initiative made him popular amongst the masses. To Sankara, reformation and rehabilitation was a way of life and not mere political propaganda. He cut short the luxuries that go with the bureaucracy and urged them to be simple in their lifestyles. He advised that his picture should not be displayed in public buildings and put a ban on chauffeur-driven Mercedes and first-class airline tickets to his ministers and top bureaucracy. 3. Where is the scope and honorable place for principled politicians? Sankara was a dynamic leader who was in a hurry to show the results. His politics was unconventional. He was a planner and creative man. A man who would decide and act start and finish. His socio- economic reforms have no precedent in any African country. Some undemocratic principles crept into his style of functioning. But what he did was not for self-interest but for the overall welfare of the Nation. He was the envy of the fellow military leaders; he challenged the former colonial masters and the French hegemony. By 1987, opposition to his leadership was both from local leaders and the fresh establishment. He had humiliated President Francois ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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