Africa and France: An unfulfilled dream of independence?

France’s former African colonies are celebrating 60 years of independence. But France’s influence remains all pervasive and critics say it is time that Africans cut the umbilical cord and put an end to Françafrique. […]

But more importantly, the political system in many of the countries was introduced by France. ”Shortly before independence, France decided to abolish the parliamentary system in some countries like Ivory Coast and introduce a presidential regime in which all territories and powers are in the hands of the head of state,” Yamb told DW. The reason being that in this way, ”only one person with all the power needs to be manipulated,” she said. Françafrique, as the French influence in the former colonies is called, remains a fact, particularly galling to the young, whose resentment of the former colonial power is growing. […]

France also has a considerable military presence in Africa. It leads the Barkhane operation against Islamist groups in the Sahel region, in which around 5,100 soldiers from several countries are involved. According to the US daily ”New York Times”, in 2007, almost half of France’s 12,000 peacekeeping troops were deployed to Africa. These troops have both military and advisory capabilities as well as supporting and stabilizing the regimes of the respective countries. Läs artikel