THE AFRIKA AND DIASPORA INSTITUTE (AaDI)
AaDI—Part of the Solution
We, members of the Steering Committee, are able to release the prepared Governing Instrument for THE AFRIKA AND DIASPORA INSTITUTE (AaDI), which the Committee planned to launch formally in March 2007. This dated coincides with Britain’s Bicentenary Commemoration of the abolition of her Slave Trade on 25 March 1807.
AaDI’s primary aims are as stated. As a reminder they are reproduced here:
AaDI is established for the benefit of the public:
1. To promote, through its activities, for the benefit of members of the Community and to provide effective support to AaDI members and associates, on issues of mutual concerns, by associating central government, local and regional authorities, local, regional and international organisations, commercial, industrial and academic institutions, voluntary, community development, self-help and non-government, organisations, locally, regionally, nationally and internationally to advance education, training, culture, social, economic, political, ethnic and religious harmony and to provide facilities in the interest of social and economic welfare and recreation and leisure time occupations with objects of improving and enhancing the quality of life.
2. To promote the efficiency and effectiveness of individuals and organisations, in particular those promoting urban constructions and regeneration, and to promote the effective and socially responsible uses of resources to further the regeneration of rural and urban areas of social or economic deprivation by:
i. providing a high quality and up to date information service;
ii. carrying out research into urban regeneration and disseminating the useful results of such research;
iii. providing a consultancy service for urban constructions and regeneration;
iv. promoting good practice in urban regeneration; and
v. supporting the development of local, regional national and international networks of urban and rural community development organisations.
‘Afrika’ is used in the AaDI Document as an emblem denoting change, a conscious re-naming of Self, even in this basic way. It is also a call for Pan-African Unity, even, too, at this basic level. AaDI’s projected working structures are shown. AaDI’s operations will be open and transparent.
The Ancient African ancestors’ MA’AT, the Feather, is adopted as AaDI’s logo to remind us of the importance to review what worked in our history. To look back in order to see where we have been, where we are today and where we must go tomorrow
The Committee calls on all conscious individuals within our individual communities world wide, as is relevant to the text of the document, to give their collective support to the pragmatic vision contains therein. It will only work with the support of the people.
This document was the product of extensive meetings and consultations locally, regionally, nationally and internationally with members of the targeted communities, of various ages, gender and social status. The document was also placed on the Internet for ten months in order that interested individuals could make their comments on the same.
During the local, regional, national and international consultation processes, members of the committee concentrated on substance and not personalities. Personality conflicts and excess individualistic egos and putting ‘self’ above the needs of the masses, had been some of the primary difficult elements among Africans in the past.
Currently, serious high level African organisers with vision, courage and commitment, must, and do, recognise and avoid at all costs, potential difficulties which personality conflicts could have on the issue of unity among our peoples. This could also cause problem in the development of our necessary organisational initiatives. If personality conflicts cannot be avoided, then they must be contained to the extent that they do not become liabilities to the Survival of African peoples.
AaDI’s unique qualities, as proposed, give local, regional, national and international voices to Africans and their heritage world wide, in a logical seamless and democratic structure.
AaDI is like a seed pod, containing many seeds of hope, blowing in the wind, in search of fertile ground in the minds of African peoples and all reasonable members of the Human Family.
The concepts and pointers for implementations across the span of Africa and her Diaspora is uncorrupted by tribal, religious, ethnic, gender, party political and sectional prejudices.
AaDI’s recommended Governing Instrument is truly a magnificent piece of join-up thinking by members of the African Community, for members of the African communities, always keeping in focus the primordial organisational needs of today’s Africans, in our world of organisational inter-play. The evidence is that those without effective world network get left behind, and forced to make good with crumbs fallen from the tables of others.
World African communities must place Self at a fundamental level of institutionalised Self-Help, for self-defined purposes, namely “it is the duty of the strong of an enlightened community to help create the conditions so that the less able among us can learn to help themselves. Self-help contributes to the collective strength of our community” - Vince Hines.
We must not be afraid to make mistakes because those are also learning imperatives. We must be certain, however, that we are creating a platform that is truly within the interest of those in need.
We are living in an increasingly competitive world and gone are the days of protest politics. This is the era of partnerships. Big multi-nationals, with all their wealth and power, realise that they, too, must form alliances in order to have perpetual world influence.
The African original campaign for change began in our ancestors’ villages four hundred years ago, fist resisting slavers and their brutal intrusions in our homeland; rebellions where they were possible on the high seas in ship on their way to the ‘new world’. Centuries of rebellions on Americas’ plantations, and in Arabia, against unique cruelties and personal mutilations. Our Campaign continued in the Western Hemisphere addressing the slave abolition issues. Our subsequent fight against colonisation, imperialism and apartheid. Our march for African Independence and Civil Rights.
Today the Campaign for Change is directed against neo-colonisation, multinational abuses of African geographical natural resources, debt burdens, local factional fighting – the poor are encouraged to fight among themselves, unjust international trading policies, foreign NGOs interference in internal affairs and low standards in governance. Before we can seriously challenge the ‘poverty trap’ we will have to do other things.
Throughout the African historical struggles for self-determination, by our side were, and are, sound allies, shown by their deeds, who were and are not of the African communities. They are from that branch of Humanity, who hold truth, Justice, order, freedom and reciprocity sacred. The African communities recognise the contributions of these individuals who were and are loyal to their beliefs and practices. We welcome always and we stand side by side with these stalwarts of the Human Family.
Difficult problems need different and specific solutions. AaDI’s Vision is part of our solution. Many of us, operating in government, social, political and economic infrastructures have experienced institutionalised racism. We need pragmatic leadership and local, regional, national and international institutions to counter imbalances the Africans and their allies have experienced and are experiencing today.
Injustices will not change until it is challenged effectively. History taught us that important lesson. Basically, Africans are today’s ‘poor’ of the world, objects for exploitations, even in light of their vast geographical inexhaustible natural resources. These conditions will not change, without collective actions. Actions in which the majority of reasonable people can support. AaDI presents this pragmatic vision.
Most of us live in a democratic frame work - whatever the limitations, which allows us the legal rights to establish strong democratic institutions. Institutions of this nature are the aspirations of the founding fathers in introducing AaDI at this stage.
In presenting AaDI, this is a positive indication that we believe in ourselves and our abilities to achieve out just goals.
We would like to quote a recent but memorable statement by an African, which brings into clear focus the need for this Institutional:
“The Commonwealth is a British institution that forges unity of the British and their Diaspora. NATO is an institution that forges unity of Europeans and their Diaspora. China Town is an "institution" that forges unity of Chinese and their Diaspora. Hinduism is an institution that forges unity between India and its Diaspora. Ideas and events have not yet precipitated an institution to unite Africans and their Diaspora. The Pan-African idea? Although it has existed for over a hundred years and has won victories, no institution as yet exists. Kenya or Ghana where it won victories has never taken up the responsibility to give it "soul". Our heritage has no meeting place, or does it?” - Dr. T. Dalgety
Let us hope that within ten years of AaDI’s operations - worldwide, some of Dr. Dalgety’s concerns will have been met satisfactorily.
When we plant seeds together we can reasonably expect a harvest.
The Committee therefore presents the final draft Governing Instrument and recommend its adoption by members of the community so invited to do so.
Afrika and Diaspora Institute (AaDI)