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‘It’s unfortunate, it’s very painful’ – Prof Lumumba reacts to Ghana’s lithium agreement

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Prof Patrick Loch Otieno Lumumba, a renowned African academic, has joined the chorus of Ghanaians who have criticized the lithium exploration agreement made between the government of Ghana and Barari DV Ghana Limited.

In an interview with TV3, Prof Lumumba stated that the Ghanaian government’s lithium exploration agreement is consistent with arrangements struck by African countries for the development of the continent’s rich resources in which foreigners gain more than citizens.

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He expressed regret that Ghana and other African countries rush to sign and celebrate deals when they only receive roughly 10% of the wealth from their own natural resources.

“Africa appears to get the short hand of the stick all the time. If you have a deal where you’re producing the bulk of what is needed by the other person and you’re getting only 10 percent of it, you have got to ask yourself, what is the problem?

“If it is 60 percent, I would begin to understand and it must be time-bound. And it is not only Ghana that finds itself in this situation; many African countries continue to find themselves in this situation. Because we have not developed the technology, because we are too quick to sign on the dotted lines,” he said.

He added, “… It is unfortunate. It is painful when I see some of these things. When we celebrate what we ought not to celebrate. It’s very painful”.

The eminent pan-Africanist urged African countries to take steps to ensure that their natural riches, such as lithium, be processed and used on the continent.

“The time is now for Africa to wake up. Under the aegis of the African Continental Free Trade Area and the Africa Agenda 263, I believe we now have enough Africans with the technological know-how to actually use the lithium locally. I believe that Africa can consume what is produced using lithium,” he added.

Pro Lumumba warned African leaders that foreign businessmen that come to the continent do so for their personal benefit, not to make Africa a better place.

“And let me tell you, all these individuals and countries who come to the continent of Africa. do not mean well for us. They are not Good Samaritans. They are bad Samaritans. And the sooner we realize that, the safer we are,“ he stressed.

 

 

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