Haiti will officially become a member of the African Union at the next summit of the regional organization in June. According to this famous journalist from Benin, it was high time that African states make a strong gesture towards the first black republic.
The news is almost unnoticed. Until then simple “observer”, Haiti,Â the first black republic in history, became, in early February inÂ Addis Ababa, “full member partner” of the African Union.
This decision, the first of its kind for a diaspora country, will be formalized at the next AU summit inÂ June-July in Lilongwe, capital of Malawi. Probably in the presence of formerÂ President of Haiti Michel Martelly, which was announced this year, the first African trip.
But immediately, the heads of state meeting in Addis Ababa were warmly welcomed, and understandably, the return of Haiti in the great African family,recalling the diplomatic efforts made since 1945 by Haiti toÂ the advent of free African States, Its criticism of the invasion ofÂ Ethiopia by Mussolini’s Italy, Its progressive stanceÂ against the war in Algeria, support for the independence of Libya andÂ assistance to African Democratic Rally, this large formation
Pan-African policy which accompanied many countries of the continent to international sovereignty.
Haiti is interested in Africa?
It is in the order of things. All those who,Â like me, have lived in this beautiful country are not surprised. For over two centuries, after all, the most “African” of the States of South America and the Caribbean is Haiti. Like many African countries, Haiti is recurrently plagued byÂ instability and violence, while Its population languished in nameless misery.
Independent on January 1, 1804, shortly after the United States (1776), but before the British (1810), Argentina (1816), Brazil (1822) and Canada (1867), Haiti is lagging behind everything except literature, poetry, painting, music, in other words, what makes the soul of a people.
Africans would do well to pay more attention to this Caribbean piece of their history, a land where is played, perhaps, their own destiny. HaitiÂ is both a great future projection and size laboratoryÂ where nature can emerge better or worse. In this, Haiti, “where negritude stood up for the first time” (the formula is AimĂ© CĂ©saire [1913-2008]), is both our past and our future.
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