Back in Nairobi after a few week trip overland from Johannesburg, South Africa to Nairobi, Kenya.
Observations bring the dilemma’s and always the question: why does development not get through onto this continent and: should development get through here anyway?
The dualism in the answers on the question why? It’s people’s own fault, it’s ‘the West’, it’s their leaders, it’s people’s own mentality, it’s past leaders, it’s culture, it’s development aid that made people lazy. But I realized: there are no clear answers.
Observations while traveling overland go so many times against all the theories why Africa seems to fail. And an other question: is this continent truly failing. like a lot of people suggest or strongly believe? One moment I tend to believe that humanity has failed here, the next minute I realize that progress is being made.
People seem to have conserved things that a lot of people in ‘the West’ seem to have forgotten about: solidarity, warmth, persistence, endurance, respect for elders, passion, hospitality that goes further than anything I have ever seen.
Reality is that people wherever I came were working, for a better future, almost day and night, really being in trouble, but persisting in their survival: for their future, for that of their kids. For the same reasons people anywhere in the world are working anywhere in the world. But the fight in Africa seems to be taking place just the absolute zero.
Like the Zimbabwean woman Fatima that runs a small terrace just around the corner of the market you see on the picture below.
Fatima fled Zimbabwe where the situation was getting out of hand and is now trying to make an income for her daughters.
In fact: there is not one answer on the why not in Africa question, we know. What I know is that to survive in Africa, people have to be tough in a special way because this environment does not bring any security.