An activist, writer, and editorialist, Kemi Seba is a Franco-Beninese figure as controversial as he is popular. This ardent defender of sovereignty and the multipolar world recently visited Russia. An opportunity for Sputnik to receive his analysis on Russo-African prospects.
“The recent reality of the multipolar world, the positive major changes in international current events, but also the injustice that many countries continue to suffer from the Western powers, push the rooted peoples of the world closer together. In any case, it’s the present approach of Russian and African Souverainistes.”
In a few words, Kemi Seba, the Panafricanist and Franco-Beninese Souverainiste, traces the key guidelines of his action. President of the NGO Urgences panafricanistes, writer, and political journalist, he is demonized in the West and by a part of the African elites for his allegedly radical stances, but he enjoys a strong popularity among the populations of Francophone Africa and its diaspora. In this exclusive interview with Sputnik, Kemi Seba, returning from a voyage in Russia, gives his impressions of the country and his analysis regarding relations between the partisans of multipolarity in Africa, Russia, and elsewhere for us.
Sputnik: You just completed a visit to Moscow. It was your first visit to Russian territory. Why Russia and why now?
Kemi Seba: I came to Russia at the invitation of the Africa – Russia Association, a body whose mission is to bring Russian and African civic organizations together, in the context of a collaboration aiming to free our respective peoples from Western imperialism.
The work that we conduct through the NGO Urgences panafricanistes is noticed by many people of different origins and cultures. Our struggle to obtain our sovereignty is a combat that touches everyone who loves equality and dignity. I came to Moscow, just as I went to Iran or Venezuela a few years ago, and as I will go to Bolivia in a few weeks.
I am a supporter of the multipolar world. I think from the depths of my soul that the world will be better as soon as peoples cease being subjects to the Western oligarchy’s dictatorship, and, that, on the contrary, different civilizational poles, rooted in tradition and having mastered geostrategy, will rise and unite to maintain global political balance. In this sense, my voyage to Russia was determinant. Because in this multipolar world, Russia holds the premier role for the moment, and seeks to align itself with those who fight against the Westernization of the world. The example of Syria and the Russian support for Bashar al-Assad attests to it in the most beautiful manner.
For our part in Africa and the Carribean, we lead a bitter struggle against French and more globally Western neocolonialism. We seek strategic partners who understand that an Africa free of all foreign tutelage would be an opportunity for the entire world. This is the only way that reliable, durable, and healthy partnerships can emerge.
Sputnik: During this journey, you met Alexander Dugin, one of the most famous Russian intellectuals and one of the principal ideologues of the concept of Eurasianism. What did you discuss?
Kemi Seba: Dugin is one of the most inspiring encounters of my political career these last few years. Inspiring, because we respectively claim discipleship from a common figure, René Guénon as it happens. His research on the Primordial Tradition changed my life and my perception of the world. And Dugin seems to be the most brilliant disciple of Guénon today, who doesn’t content himself with lauding his “ideological master,” but extends his work, by inscribing the traditionalist approach in a geostrategic dimension. From this angle his work “The Front of Traditions” remains an important book for me. Its chapters such as The Metaphysical Roots of Political Ideologies, The Metaphysical Factor in Paganism, The Great War of Continents remain inexhaustible sources of reflection for me. The sole caveat I have with Dugin, and it’s noteworthy, is that where he puts the Eurasian bloc at the center of everything (that’s normal, it’s the region he comes from), for me, it’s Africa.
To return to what we talked about, we spoke about many, many things. The only thing I can tell you is that the multipolar world is seen as a necessity by him, as it is by myself. Russia, thanks to people like Dugin, is in the process of constructing a super-powerful Eurasian axis that plays a role maintaining the different souverainismes in the world. The alliance of an Erdogan with a Putin illustrates this orientation. It’s up to us African Souverainistes to turn Africa into this powerful pole as the founding fathers of Panafricanism so desired.
The sole disadvantage that we have, and it’s important, is that we don’t have leaders favorable to the cause of African self-determination, especially in Francophone Sub-Saharan Africa. Henceforth, we must do everything by ourselves, starting from civil society. It’s a bitter, grueling, difficult fight, but the victory will only be more beautiful.
Sputnik: Do you think the Eurasianism and Panafricanism can and should cooperate? And if yes, why?
Kemi Seba: Yes, fundamentally I think so, just like the Bolivarian Axis (South America) among others, is a pole that cannot be ignored. All people must be willing to cooperate, but they must be rooted in their own paradigm. The new millennium is, and will be even more so in the time to come, the era of civilizational blocs. The era of great spaces. Great spaces, who through their collaboration, will be the guarantors of a balanced world, rid of the unipolar axis of NATO, which only creates chaos and desolation everywhere it goes.
This also allows me to clarify that, for me, it’s not about seeing the Eurasian pole succeed the American or more globally the Western pole. If we speak of alliance today, it’s because Putin’s approach is clear, traceable, legible, and guarantees a balance in the world today. In the future, if we feel that Russia has a colonial program like the West had in Africa, we will distance ourselves from it. But in a concrete manner, that’s not the case, despite the Western demonization that targets President Putin. The latter wants a multipolar world, and is the global figure of Souverainisme. This current is the ideological foundation of his politics. It’s ours also. So it’s a natural alliance.
Sputnik: Besides the meeting with Mr. Dugin, you presided over a conference on November 16th near the People’s Friendship University of Russia (Patrice Lumumba University), with the theme “The necessity of an alliance between African Souverainistes and Russia.” An event that also attracted keen interest among the African diaspora in Russia, including students. What did you address during this conference? And how were these ideas received by Africans in Russia? In turn, have African students come up with ideas would seem interesting to you in the future?
Kemi Seba: We addressed the themes mentioned in the preceding questions of this interview. Including multipolarity from a geopolitical as well as metaphysical point of view. Including the role that Africa has to play in this world. Including the role of the African youth. And including why the alliance with Russia – and with others – can be a timely asset in our struggle against the liberal globalism promoted by the West.
It was an extremely rich and moving meeting. Not all the young students present were from the People’s Friendship University of Russia. They came from different schools and institutions. The majority of them were geniuses, and I weigh my words. The exchanges were inspiring, rich, and I humbly think I’ve contributed to expand and solidify their minds on questions of geostrategy. All the questions had an undeniable contribution to the resolution of Africa’s problems, and went in the direction of a greater assumption of responsibility for African problems by Africans themselves.
I was touched to see that so many had succeeded in procuring my works and had read them scrupulously. Self-determination is a religion for this new generation. And their capacity to understand their natural enemy and their occasional allies seems innate. This why, in general, the alliances of civilian resistance movements with Russia and certain Latin American counties have obtained everyone’s approval.
Sputnik: In addition to the struggle for the sovereignty of African countries which constitutes your spearhead, two subjects that are particularly close to your heart are the fight against the CFA Franc – in which you are actively engaged – as well as the denunciation of the situation of Sub-Saharan migrants in Libya. A situation that was created after the NATO intervention against this country, which was also one of the principal torch bearers of Panafricanism in its time. What do you foresee regarding these two subjects currently?
Kemi Seba: Regarding the CFA Franc, we’ve contributed through our mobilizations on the ground, in Africa and in the diaspora, to move the lines. Formerly a subject that was held prisoner by the elites, and even to the point of excess, this debate has been seized by the African street, so despised by the oligarchy, because of our demonstrations. Yet it’s the African street that has suffered for so long from the use of this currency, and not our leaders, who use the dollar or the euro more often than our own play money for their transactions.
A year ago today, when I declared that 2017 would be the year of the CFA Franc in Africa, certain African representatives mocked me. A year later, the latter are the first to speak about the CFA and recognize the importance of the African youth mobilization that we initiated through the Anti-CFA Front, an inclusive structure founded by our NGO Urgences panafricanistes. Even if they always try to discredit us and separate the action from its initiators, deemed unconventional and radical, we’ve won the debate of the people. The African elites, too pedantic, arrogant, stupefied by their assumed knowledge, don’t know how to speak to the people. Unlike ourselves, who experience the realities of the latter, and thus know address them.
Despite everything, the fact remains that the fight is not over. The Francophone African presidents, modern petty kings, so subservient to the West, but so contemptuous of their own people, aren’t willing to liberate them from their chains.
In my eyes, what is slavery in Libya but result our African leaders’ irresponsibility first and foremost. Yes, clearly the criminals of NATO who destroyed a country and murdered one of our most brilliant leaders – Gaddafi – in order to obtain oil are the great instigators of this chaos, they are primarily responsible for all that. But what to say about our heads of state who divert so much public money that they end up giving the African youth the impression that their Mother Earth is a hell? They are primarily responsible for this migratory drama. If our African leaders did their work, there wouldn’t be so many young people who want to flee the country.
Next, there is a patriotic approach to teaching our children. To make them understand that Africa owes them nothing, but that they owe everything to Africa. To make them understand that what the African elites don’t do for the people, the people must do for themselves. We can no longer flee our countries as soon as things get bad. It’s up to us to resolve the problems that our irresponsible elites do not.