This is the high mass of the distant successors of Marx, Lenin and Bloom, nearly a century old. If it has been popular for a long time, the reminder of the great ideological and social battles of the Popular Front in France in 2022 raises legitimate questions. Indeed, if in the 20th century the historical legitimacy of the Socialist International – its daughter, the Workers’ International – was hardly in doubt during the hottest hours of the ideological battle between the East and the West around the two poles of planetary power, the USSR and the United States of America, on the other hand, in the 21 it is legitimate to question it in the first quarter of the th century.
Since the last decade of the 20th century, the world has experienced profound changes, especially with the collapse of communism and the conversion of almost all states to the liberal dogma of the Consensus. washington, and the transformation of many former socialist formations into social democracy. A change that sometimes disguises a real commitment to liberal policies, such as the Labor Party in England under Tony Blair’s prime ministership.
[Tribune] The twilight of opposition in French-speaking Africa
Many African political organizations are members of the Socialist International. Some of their leaders have joined prominent positions in their countries, even higher magistracies. This is Léopold Sédar Senghor and Abdou Diouf in Senegal, Laurent Gbagbo in the Ivory Coast, Mahamadou Issoufou in Niger, Alpha Condé in Guinea or recently Saleh Kebzabo in Chad. Apart from the Madrid meeting, there is reason to be concerned about the ideological position of political parties in Africa since the wave of democratization processes in the early 1990s.
Confusion and disinterest
In the political arena of most African states, there are about a hundred political entities that justify their legal existence. When created, they consider it a point of honor to make their name a showcase of their software ambitions. In the reality of the exercise of power – for those who manage to conquer it – it is clear that the public policies developed by these parties in power or their diplomatic choices are more subject to the constraints or opportunities of the international scene than to political doctrine. .
Surely we can agree with Jean Jaurès that we must “go beyond the real to the ideal”. Moreover, this break between political philosophy and the practice of state power cannot exist for a citizen who has to make a choice in front of a political proposal. that causing confusion or disinterest. Their sects are mostly empty shells far from translating the real project of social transformation.
Will African democracy be invented?
The formation of many political parties in Africa is rarely preceded by critical analysis and forward thinking. Instead of an ideological corps, the basis of several formations worships the leader, this “founding father”, whose longevity at the head will be equal to the duration of his existence, internally he is afraid of the idea of his change. despite the allegations at the head of the state. As a result, the sociological anchor of the party has no density beyond its ethnic group, outside the square of loyalists from the first hour.
This diversion of political offer is also related to the structuring of many political parties in Africa. Indeed, there is rarely a constant dynamic of the production of innovative ideas within them. Unlike political parties in the West or Asia, African parties are unlikely to be supported by think tanks that provide them with productive knowledge on key issues of the moment or future. Their social project remains frozen in the ideological manifesto that appears in the legalization document. While society is a scene of constant change, for some it’s a mantra that will never stop.
If the humanistic ideal of primitive socialism remains a legitimate aspiration, the African political parties that champion it must question it in light of Africa’s own expectations and interests. Because all political thought is an environment and of one moment.