The New African Diaspora in the United States 9781315544670

Fast growing in population, African immigrants in the United States have become a significant force, to the point that t

424 65 6MB

English Pages 206 [207] Year 2017

Report DMCA / Copyright

DOWNLOAD FILE

Polecaj historie

The New African Diaspora in the United States
 9781315544670

Table of contents :
Cover......Page 1
Title Page......Page 4
Copyright Page......Page 5
Table of Contents......Page 6
List of figures......Page 8
List of tables......Page 9
Notes on contributors......Page 10
Preface......Page 13
Introduction......Page 14
PART I Historical and conceptual perspective......Page 22
1 Pan-Africanism and the integration of continental and Diaspora Africans......Page 24
PART II Continental expressions and Diasporan identities......Page 40
2 The young Igbo Diaspora in the United States......Page 42
3 African immigrants and their churches......Page 54
4 The making of the Liberian Diasporas and the challenges of postwar reconstruction......Page 72
5 Exploring the transformative effects of policy among African Diaspora voters......Page 87
6 Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to the United States......Page 111
PART III The Diaspora and continental ramifications......Page 118
7 The remittance objectives of second-generation Ghanaian Americans......Page 120
8 The Diaspora and the leadership challenge in Nigeria......Page 142
9 The role of the Diaspora in strengthening democratic governance in Africa......Page 156
10 The Visa Lottery versus brain drain: the impact of the African Diaspora on vocational artisanship......Page 168
11 Revisiting Africa’s brain drain and the Diaspora option......Page 178
Bibliography......Page 194
Index......Page 200

Citation preview

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The New African Diaspora in the United States

Fast growing in population, African immigrants in the United States have become a significant force, to the point that the idea of a new African diaspora is now a reality. This thriving community has opened new arenas of scholarly discourse on Black Atlantic history beyond the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies. This book investigates the complex dynamic forces that have shaped, and continue to shape, this new diaspora. In eleven original essays, the volume examines pertinent themes, such as immigration, integration dilemmas, identity construction, brain drain, remittances, and expanding African religious space, and how these dynamics impact and intersect with the African homeland. With contributors from both sides of the Atlantic that represent a diverse range of academic disciplines, this book offers a broad perspective on emerging themes in contemporary African Diasporan experiences. The book will be of interest to scholars and students of African and African American Studies, Sociology, and History. Toyin Falola is the Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair Professor in the Humanities and a Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Texas at Austin. Adebayo Oyebade is Professor of History and chair of the department at Tennessee State University, Nashville, Tennessee.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Routledge African Studies

12 Securing Africa Local Crises and Foreign Interventions Edited by Toyin Falola and Charles Thomas 13 African Youth in Contemporary Literature and Popular Culture Identity Quest Edited by Vivian Yenika-Agbaw and Lindah Mhando 14 Indigenous Discourses on Knowledge and Development in Africa Edited by Edward Shizha and Ali A. Abdi 15 African Culture and Global Politics Language, Philosophies, and Expressive Culture in Africa and the Diaspora Edited by Toyin Falola and Danielle Porter Sanchez 16 Urbanization and SocioEconomic Development in Africa Challenges and Opportunities Edited by Steve Kayizzi-Mugerwa, Abebe Shimeles and Nadège Désirée Yaméogo

17 Continuity and Change in SubSaharan African Demography Edited by Clifford O. Odimegwu and John Kekovole 18 Sexual Violence in Conflict and Post- Conflict Societies International Agendas and African Contexts Edited by Doris Buss, Joanne Lebert, Blair Rutherford, Donna Sharkey and Obijiofor Aginam 19 Land Reforms and Natural Resource Conflicts in Africa New Development Paradigms in the Era of Global Liberalization Edited by Tukumbi Lumumba-Kasongo 20 Cultural Entrepreneurship in Africa Edited by Ute Röschenthaler and Dorothea Schulz 21 The New African Diaspora in the United States Edited by Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The New African Diaspora in the United States

Edited by Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade

First published 2017 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN and by Routledge 711 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business © 2017 Edited by Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade The right of Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade to be identified as the authors of the editorial matter, and of the authors for their individual chapters, has been asserted in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilized in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. Trademark notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or registered trademarks, and are used only for identification and explanation without intent to infringe. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data Names: Falola, Toyin, editor of compilation. | Oyebade, Adebayo, editor of compilation. Title: The new African diaspora in the United States / edited by Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade. Description: New York, NY : Routledge, [2017] | Series: Routledge African studies ; 21 | Includes bibliographical references and index. Identifiers: LCCN 2016003129| ISBN 9781138679740 (hardback) | ISBN 9781315544670 (ebook) Subjects: LCSH: Africans–United States. | African diaspora. | Africans–Migrations. | Brain drain–Africa. | Immigrants–United States–Social conditions. | United States–Emigration and immigration–History. | Africa–Civilization–American influences. | Africa–Emigration and immigration–History. Classification: LCC E184.A24 N53 2017 | DDC 304.873096–dc23 LC record available at http://lccn.loc.gov/2016003129 ISBN: 978-1-138-67974-0 (hbk) ISBN: 978-1-315-54467-0 (ebk) Typeset in Times New Roman by Wearset Ltd, Boldon, Tyne and Wear

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Contents

List of figures List of tables Notes on contributors Preface Introduction

vii viii ix xii 1

ADEBAYO OYEBADE AND TOYIN FALOLA

PART I

Historical and conceptual perspective 1 Pan-Africanism and the integration of continental and Diaspora Africans

9 11

VICTOR IYANYA

PART II

Continental expressions and Diasporan identities 2 The young Igbo Diaspora in the United States

27 29

UCHENNA ONUzULIkE

3 African immigrants and their churches

41

ADEBAYO OYEBADE

4 The making of the Liberian Diasporas and the challenges of postwar reconstruction CHRIS AGOHA

59

vi

Contents

5 Exploring the transformative effects of policy among African Diaspora voters

74

kAREN OkHOYA-INYANJI

6 Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to the United States

98

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

JOSEPH O. AkINBI

PART III

The Diaspora and continental ramifications 7 The remittance objectives of second-generation Ghanaian Americans

105 107

kIRSTIE kWARTENG

8 The Diaspora and the leadership challenge in Nigeria

129

SILk UGWU OGBU

9 The role of the Diaspora in strengthening democratic governance in Africa

143

kENNETH NWEkE AND VINCENT NYEWUSIRA

10 The Visa Lottery versus brain drain: the impact of the African Diaspora on vocational artisanship

155

TAJUDEEN ADEWUMI ADEBISI

11 Revisiting Africa’s brain drain and the Diaspora option

165

GASHAWBEzA W. BEkELE

Bibliography Index

181 187

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Figures

I.1 3.1 3.2 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 11.1

African-born population in the US: 1970 to 2010 Foreign-born population in Tennessee State RCCG Agape House workshop series Transformation of policy into behavioral change Interrelatedness of ecologies and scope of transformative social policy effects Policy-driven social transformation framework Behavioral change across diasporic ecologies kenya government categories of treaties and laws (kenya Law (NCLR)) Seven categories of socially transformative policies Modifying Diaspora voting through policy-driven behavioral transformation Official remittance flows to sub-Saharan Africa and developing countries, 1995–2013

2 43 54 75 77 78 79 88 89 92 173

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Tables

I.1 I.2 I.3 I.4 I.5 3.1 3.2 3.3 5.1 5.2 7.1 7.2

African immigrants: period of entry African immigrant groups with the largest presence in the US (2008–2012) Four US states with the highest number of African-born population, 2008–2012 Metropolitan areas with the largest African-born populations, 2008–2012 Percent naturalized by period of entry: 2010 African foreign-born population in Tennessee by region African foreign-born population in Tennessee African immigrant churches: special programs in 2014 kenya government categories of treaties and laws (kenya Law (NCLR)) Seven categories of socially transformative policies Survey data Second-generation Ghanaian identity-interview data

3 3 3 4 4 45 45 53 85 87 116 118

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Contributors

Tajudeen Adewumi Adebisi holds a PhD degree in Adult Education from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. His research interests are in adult education, literacy and basic education, human resource development, workplace education, and vocational and technical education. His scholarly publications have appeared in journals such as Educational Periscope, and The African Symposium. Chris Agoha is a Political Affairs Officer at the United Nations Mission in Liberia. He is a laureate of the CODESRIA Governance Institute, Dakar, Senegal, a Fellow of the United States International Visitors Program, and a Fellow of the United Nations International Courses, Tokyo, Japan. He holds degrees in international law and diplomacy, and in political science from the University of Lagos, Nigeria. His research interests relate to themes in peace and conflict studies, democracy and good governance, security and strategic studies, development, and ethnicity and social movements. His scholarly contributions include chapters in edited books, including Toyin Falola and Charles Thomas (eds.), Securing Africa: Local Crises and Foreign Interventions, (Routledge, 2014). Joseph O. Akinbi is a lecturer at Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo, Nigeria. He holds a PhD in History from the University of Benin, Nigeria. His research areas are international relations, diplomatic history, and contemporary Nigerian History. He has published articles in academic journals as well as chapters in books. He is the editor of Towards A Better Nigeria: Reflections on Contemporary Issues in The Socio-Political and Economic Development of Nigeria (1999). Gashawbeza W. Bekele is Assistant Professor of Geography at Tennessee State University, where he teaches courses in economic, cultural, political, world, and African geography. He obtained his PhD in Geography from West Virginia University and his M. Phil. in Development Geography from the University of Oslo, Norway. His work and scholarship, which transcend disciplinary boundaries, have focused on broadening our understanding of the relationship between international migration and development in Africa and

x

Contributors

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

industrial clustering and regional economic development in the US. He is currently working on a paper about brain drain from Africa and on a manuscript entitled “Spatio-economic Analysis of Industry Clusters: Methodology and Empirical Evidence from the US.” Toyin Falola is the Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities and University Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Texas at Austin. A scholar of African and Disaporan African studies, he has published over 100 books, including The African Diaspora: Slavery, Modernity, and Globalization (2013). Victor Iyanya is a Senior Lecturer in the History Department at Benue State University, Nigeria, where he also obtained his PhD. In addition to teaching a wide range of courses on the history of Africa, the United States, and Asia, his publications in these areas include articles in journals such as The Journal of African Cultural Studies and book chapters. His main area of research interest is African cultural history. Kirstie Kwarteng is the Executive Officer of the Diaspora African Women’s Network (DAWN). She holds a Master of Arts in Intercultural Service, Leadership and Management from SIT Graduate Institute. Her master’s thesis is entitled “The Remittance Intentions of Second-Generation Ghanaian Americans.” She also holds a Bachelors of Arts in Human and Organizational Development, with a focus on international leadership and development, from Vanderbilt University. Her areas of expertise include Diaspora populations, migration and development, and second-generation migrant identity and transnationalism. Kenneth Nweke teaches in the Department of Political Science, Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Rumuolumeni, Port Harcourt, Nigeria. He obtained his PhD in Political Science (Government) from Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu, Nigeria. His areas of research interest are development studies, public policy, and Nigerian government and politics. He has made a number of conference presentations and published scholarly works in journals. Dr. Nweke is the author of three books, including Fundamental Elements of Government and Politics (Port Harcourt: Rodi Printing and Publishing Company, 2009). Dr. Nweke also serves as a commissioner in Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission, Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Vincent Nyewusira obtained his PhD in Public Administration from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, and teaches in the Department of Political Science, Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Rumuolumeni, Port Harcourt, Nigeria. His areas of research are in development studies, public policy, and public administration, among others. He has a number of scholarly publications in both local and international journals, and has presented scholarly papers at conferences. Silk Ugwu Ogbu is a political analyst and communications strategist. He holds a PhD degree in International Relations from Enugu State University of

Contributors

xi

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Science and Technology, and another PhD in Public Relations from the University of Nigeria. His research interests include conflict resolution, electoral and institutional reforms, and alternative community development strategies. He has extensive experience in private sector practice, and has contributed immensely to scholarship through conference presentations and publications. He currently teaches at the School of Media and Communication, PanAtlantic University, Lagos, Nigeria. Karen Okhoya-Inyanji is a PhD candidate at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her areas of specialization are comparative public policy and government performance in public management. She has carried out field studies in kenya and the United States, and has expanded her inquiry on citizen satisfaction with public services to include several African countries. She is currently working on a dissertation on the politics of citizen satisfaction with public service provision in Africa. Among her forthcoming publications are the assessments of the kenya Constituency Development Fund, and the transformative effects of migration on African Diaspora citizens’ attitudes towards public services in their home countries. Uchenna Onuzulike (PhD, Howard University) is an adjunct instructor at Pepperdine University’s Washington DC Program and in the School of Arts and Media Design at James Madison University. His research interests revolve around the construction and negotiation of ethnic, transnational, and diasporic identities within the contexts of social media, language, religion, and film. His dissertation, “Ethnic and Transnational Identities in the Diaspora: A Phenomenological Study of Second-Generation Igbo-American Young Adults,” won the Outstanding Dissertation Award of the National Communication Association’s African American Communication and Culture Division and the Black Caucus [100th Anniversary Convention] (November 2014). He is published, and has presented approximately fifty papers at national and international conferences. Adebayo Oyebade is Professor of History and chair of the department at Tennessee State University, Nashville. He obtained his PhD in History from Temple University, Philadelphia. He has written extensively on African political and diplomatic history, the African Diaspora, and the diplomatic history of the United States. Among his published books are Culture and Customs of Angola (Greenwood, 2007), Hot Spot: Sub-Saharan Africa, (Greenwood, 2010, co-authored with Toyin Falola), and The United States’ Foreign Policy in Africa in the 21st Century: Issues and Perspectives (Carolina Academic Press, 2014, edited).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Preface

As related to the United States, the term “African Diaspora” has mostly been used to refer to African Americans who are a product of the forced migration of Africans to the New World during the transatlantic slave trade that lasted from the fifteenth to the nineteenth centuries. However, the African Diaspora in the United States has expanded significantly to include more recent African-born immigrants, particularly those arriving from the 1980s. These later arrivals constitute a small, but significant portion of the African Diaspora. Distinct from the African Americans, the African-born population has been referred to as the “new African Diaspora.” In eleven chapters, this volume investigates some of the complex dynamic forces that have shaped the new African Diaspora: globalization and increased immigration, brain drain, expansion of African religious space, remittances, and various elements of homeland connection. The chapters are authored by scholars from both the African and American sides of the Atlantic, and they represent diverse academic disciplines including history, international relations, political science, public policy, media and communications studies, and religion, hence the multidisciplinary approach of the book. This book aims to add to our understanding of the still emerging new African Diaspora in the United States. In general, it is hoped that it further enriches the historiography of Black Atlantic Studies. The book is a product of selected papers presented at the 2014 Africa Conference held at the University of Texas, Austin on the theme, “African Diasporas: Old and New.” Although the conference focused on all the regions where the African Diaspora exists, this particular volume explores the complex identities of the African Diaspora in the United States and its repercussions on, and connections with, the African continent. We thank all the contributors who have made their papers available for publication. Toyin Falola University of Texas, Austin, TX Adeabyo Oyebade Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN Fall 2015

Introduction

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Adebayo Oyebade and Toyin Falola

The African Diaspora in the Americas was established by the transatlantic slave trade that brought thousands of enslaved Africans to the New World between the sixteenth and the nineteenth centuries. However, the end of the slave trade did not terminate transatlantic crossing by Africans. While there was no steady flow of immigrants from Africa to the United States before the mid-twentieth century, sporadic, voluntary immigrations existed. However, since the closing decades of the twentieth century, a new dimension has underlined African immigration. During this period, the United States has seen large-scale immigration from Africa, more than at any other period since the end of the Atlantic trade. Thus, today, Africans are among the fastest-growing immigrant groups in the United States, constituting a dynamic community. The inflow of Africans to the United States in recent times has added a new dynamic to the historical narratives of the black presence in the United States, and offers a re-assessment of the history of the Black Atlantic.

Conceptualizing the new African Diaspora The term the “new African Diaspora” has been coined to describe a new and burgeoning black racial group in the United States, distinct from African Americans who constitute the traditional diaspora established by the forced migrations of the Atlantic slave trade. Scholars of African Diasporic Studies have variously defined this idea.1 To provide a framework of analysis for this book, the first part of this introductory chapter examines two important features of this diaspora. The first is that it represents a community of blacks born in Africa, and who are recent immigrants to the United States. The second is that, for the vast majority of these immigrants, America has become a permanent place of abode, which has made the community increasingly visible in many facets of America’s social and economic life. Immigrants as African born According to the United States Census Bureau, the “foreign-born” category of the American population defines “anyone who is not a U.S. citizen at birth,”2 and this group encompasses the following:

A. Oyebade and T. Falola

• • • • •

naturalized American citizens; lawful permanent residents (i.e. “Green Card” holders); temporary migrants (i.e. foreign students); refugees and asylum grantees; and, illegal immigrants.3

The immigrants that constitute the new African Diaspora in the United States are a part of the “foreign-born” population of America. The diaspora is made up of all the groups identified above, although refugees have often been overtly emphasized. The immigrants are also identified as “African-born,” another term used by the US Census Bureau and other agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security to distinguish them from American-born blacks. From the 1970s, this immigrant community has grown steadily as a result of an unprecedented and steady wave of voluntary immigration from the continent. As shown in Figure I.1, the African-born population in 1970 stood at a little over 80,000. Within the span of four decades, by 2010, about 1.6 million African-born immigrants resided in the United States. The new African Diaspora assumed a recognizable shape with the influx of African-born immigrants beginning from the 1980s. New arrivals in the 1990s and the first decade of the twenty-first century, when the largest influx took place, brought about a dramatic increase in the African-born population (Table I.1), and this further consolidated the emergence of the new diaspora.

1,800,000 1,600,000 1,400,000 1,200,000 Total (millions)

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

2

1,000,000 800,000 600,000 400,000 200,000 0

1970

1980

1990

2000

2010

Year

Figure I.1 African-born population in the US: 1970 to 2010 (source: US Census Bureau, 1970–2000 Censuses; 2010 American Community Survey, Table S0504).

Introduction

3

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Table I.1 African immigrants: period of entry Period

Percentage

Pre-1980 1980–1989 1990–1999 2000–2010

9.1 12.9 26.5 51.5

Source: US Census Bureau, 2010.

The new immigrants represent different demographic regions of Africa, and are by no means a homogeneous group. They come from different socio-cultural, ethno-linguistic backgrounds, and even racial groups. Although they constitute different nationals, the largest immigrant groups, about 4.6 percent of the total African-born population, originated from Nigeria and Ghana (West Africa), Ethiopia and Kenya (East Africa), and Egypt (North Africa). Table I.2 shows the breakdown of the largest immigrant populations by national origin. African immigrants are spread all over the United States and are found in every state. However, within this wide geographical distribution, four states boast an African-born population exceeding 100,000 (Table I.3). African immigrants are also found in large numbers in particular metropolitan areas of the nation (Table I.4). Table I.2 African immigrant groups with the largest presence in the US (2008–2012) Country of birth

Number of immigrants

Estimated percentage of all African-born population

Nigerians Ethiopians Egyptians Ghanaians Kenyans

221,000 164,000 143,000 121,000 95,000

14 10.4 9 7.6 6

Source: US.Census Bureau, 2008–2012.4

Table I.3 Four US states with the largest African-born populations, 2008–2012 State

Number of African-born population

New York California Texas Maryland

164,000 155,000 134,000 120,000

Source: US.Census Bureau, 2008–2012.5

4

A. Oyebade and T. Falola

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Table I.4 Metropolitan areas with the largest African-born populations, 2008–2012 Metropolitan area

Number of African-born population

New York Washington Atlanta Los Angeles Minneapolis-St. Paul Dallas-Fort Worth Boston

212,000 161,000 68,000 68,000 64,000 61,000 60,000

Source: US Census Bureau, 2008–2012.6

Immigrants and permanent residency Characteristic of the recent African-born immigrants to the United States is the likelihood that they will make their host country their permanent home. This is a departure from the tradition before the 1970s, when the United States was a temporary place of sojourn for Africans, most of whom were students who had come to tap the American educational system. As temporary sojourners, these students generally returned to their respective countries at the end of their studies to contribute to their nation’s development. However, recent immigrants, a large proportion of whom are beneficiaries of the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV Program, popularly known as the Green Card lottery) tend to regard the United States not as a stop-gap, temporary abode, but as a permanent home. Except for periodic brief visits home, most do not have any plans to return to live in their original countries. In line with the above model, increased numbers of African immigrants have sought permanent resident status or American citizenship since the 1980s. As of 2012, according to Department of Homeland Security data, a total of 107,241 immigrants from Africa obtained legal permanent resident status through a variety of ways, including family or employment sponsorship, the Green Card lottery, and as refugees and asylees.7 Available US Census Bureau data also states that 46 percent of all foreign-born Africans were naturalized citizens in 2010.8 Africa was consistently the region with the second highest number of foreign-born immigrants naturalized in the United States, from those who entered before 1980 right up to those who entered after 2000 (Table I.5). Table I.5 Percent naturalized by period of entry: 2010

Foreign-born Africa Asia Europe

Before 1980

1980–1989

1990–1999

2000 or later

2010

79.8 87.5 91.8 83.4

63.1 77.5 85.5 67.1

42.9 64.3 67.9 63.2

13.7 21.5 18.8 22.3

43.7 46.1 57.7 61.8

Source: US Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2010.9

Introduction

5

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Overview of chapters The emergence of a new African Diaspora in the United States has opened new arenas of scholarly discourse on Black Atlantic history beyond the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies. This book explores some of the emerging dynamics of the new African Diaspora in the United States. The experiences of new African immigrants are varied, but in general they fall within three thematic frameworks: integration, identities construction, and homeland connections. The book focuses on these themes, which are explored in eleven original essays divided into three sections. In Part I, Historical and Conceptual Perspective, Victor Iyanya, in his chapter titled, “Pan-Africanisms and the Integration of Continental and Diaspora Africans,” provides a historical and conceptual framework for the book by examining the concept of pan-Africanism with a focus on its origins and development. He argues that the terms “Diaspora Africa” and “Pan-Africanism” are intertwined and not mutually exclusive. Thus, he sees PanAfricanism as a uniting force for both continental and Diasporan Africans, and a useful instrument for the collective destiny of black people on both sides of the Atlantic. In Part II, Continental Expressions and Diasporan Identities, four chapters provide perspectives on concrete aspects of Black Atlantic history delineating intersections between the diaspora and the homeland. Uchenna Onuzulike sets the ball rolling in Chapter 2, “The Young Igbo Diaspora in the United States,” by examining the Igbo community in the diaspora with specific reference to second-generation Igbo young adults in the Washington, DC area. Based on qualitative research, the chapter argues that this generation has utilized several channels, such as social/cultural organizations and social media, to connect with their ethnic identity in the United States and also identify with their ancestral homeland. Next, in Chapter 3, “African Immigrants and their Churches,” Adebayo Oyebade contributes to the literature on the African religious diaspora. He argues that African immigrant churches, which have multiplied significantly in the last two decades, constitute an important institution that has impacted the African immigrant community in a significant manner. While existing studies of the African immigrant church have predominantly focused on large American cities such as New York, Chicago, and Houston, Oyebade takes the mid-size southern city of Nashville and its suburbs as a case study to investigate the importance of the African indigenous church in the African immigrant community. Founded as a colony on the west coast of Africa by American ex-slaves in the early nineteenth century, Liberia constitutes a key component of Black Atlantic history. A reversed immigration had been at play, especially since the 1980s, in which Liberians have flocked to the United States, creating a new diaspora. This is the subject of Chapter 4, “The Making of the Liberian Diaspora and the Challenges of Postwar Reconstruction,” authored by Chris Agoha. In the chapter, the author proposes that the emergence of the Liberian Diaspora could be attributed, first, to the country’s politics of oppression, and, second, to its long history of

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

6

A. Oyebade and T. Falola

civil conflict. He argues that the combination of these factors drove many Liberians abroad, particularly to the United States. Further, Agoha examines the challenges faced by Diasporan Liberians, such as dual allegiance, transnational identity, and the intricacies of relationships with the homeland. In Chapter 5, “Exploring the Transformative Effects of Policy Among African Diaspora Voters,” Karen Okhoya-Inyanji employs a multidisciplinary approach to examine the little-discussed but growing importance of the African Diaspora in the electoral landscape of African nations. Her chapter considers the sociopolitical forces responsible for the voting behavior of African immigrants and posits that these forces shape the nature and the scope of their influence on their respective home-country’s electoral tradition. Okhoya-Inyanji perceives a voting incongruence between diaspora citizens and in-country citizens. A core theme in diaspora discourses is transnational migrations. Motivational factors for migrations of Africans to the United States, in particular, have been a subject of scholarly enquiry. Joseph O. Akinbi pursues this subject in Chapter 6, “Contemporary Migrations of Nigerians to the United States.” Using Nigeria as a case study, Akinbi offers a critical analysis of the causes of the desire, and, indeed, immigrations of many Nigerians to the United States. In his study, Akinbi makes a distinction between legal and illegal immigration, and discusses both patterns as well as the challenges that confront the immigrants. Part III, The Diaspora and Continental Ramifications, has five chapters, which examine some of the varied ways in which the diaspora has impacted the African continent. In Chapter 7, “The Remittance Objectives of Second-Generation Ghanaian Americans,” Kirstie Kwarteng examines the issue of remittances that have become an integral part of economies all over the Global South. The study focuses on the remittance intentions of second-generation Ghanaian Americans in the Greater Washington, DC area. It examines whether the intent to remit is based on the same factors that motivate remittances from the first generation, namely, family ties, cultural identity, and emotional or cultural connection to Ghana. The chapter found no relationship between cultural identity and emotional or cultural connection to Ghana as factors in the intention to remit, and argues that second-generation Ghanaian Americans are more likely to provide social remittances rather than monetary ones. Chapter 8, “The Diaspora and the Leadership Challenge in Nigeria,” by Silk Ugwu Ogbu, focuses on the question of leadership failure in Nigeria and the Diasporan potential to provide a solid platform for economic and political transformation of the country. This chapter analyzes the relevance of the diaspora, both as a potential source of good leadership and as a facilitator of social and attitudinal change within Nigerian society. This subject of the possible Diasporan roles in advancing development in Africa is further pursued in Chapter 9, “The Role of the Diaspora in Strengthening Democratic Governance in Africa,” by Kenneth Nweke and Vincent Nyewusira. The authors raise the question of whether the new African Diaspora has the capacity to strengthen democratic governance in a political landscape littered with innumerable distress signals. They adopt a systems theory as an analytic tool to view the diaspora as an interventionist

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Introduction

7

group that collaborates and networks with critical institutions of democracy (such as election management bodies, the media, civil society organizations, labor unions, professional bodies, and security agencies), to ensure the development of democracy. While Nweke and Nyewusira do not argue that the express solution to Africa’s democratic conundrum is Diasporan participation, they make a powerful argument that the diaspora will play a significant role in the political future of Africa. In Chapter 10, “The Visa Lottery Versus Brain Drain: The Impact of the African Diaspora on Vocational Artisanship,” author Tajudeen Adewumi Adebisi goes back to the theme of immigration, but with a focus on the problem of brain drain. Adebisi argues that the visa lottery project has become the major means by which Africans emigrate to the Global North, and has been closely associated with brain drain. In weighing the effects of the visa lottery and brain drain on economic development in Africa, the author contends that the project produces a drought of skilled workers and a knowledge-centric workforce in Africa, which, in turn, negatively impacts economic, social, and educational development of the continent. In Chapter 11, Gashawbeza W. Bekele’s “Revisiting Africa’s Brain Drain and the Diaspora Option,” takes another perspective on the question of brain drain, which he sees as a critical, unsolved problem in Africa’s developmental journey. Bekele views brain drain as a cruel paradox of the contemporary world, in which a significant number of highly qualified professionals migrate to more developed countries, mostly in search of greener pastures. The chapter assesses the extent of brain drain from Africa, its impact on development, and the available policy options to mitigate its adverse impacts. Bekele critically examines the ways in which the African Diaspora community could be mobilized in the building of a prosperous and democratic Africa, as well as the major challenges in mobilizing the diaspora community to utilize its human and financial capital for Africa’s development.

Notes 1 See, for instance, Toyin Falola, The African Diaspora: Slavery, Modernity, and Globalization (Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2013); Isidore Okpewho and Nzegwu Nkiru (eds.), The New African Diaspora, (Indiana: Indiana University Press, 2009); April Gordon, “The New Diaspora: African Immigration to the United States,” Journal of Third World Studies 15 (1): 79–103. 1998; Kwadwo Konadu-Agyemang, Baffour K. Takyi, and John Arthur, (eds.), The New African Diaspora in North America: Trends, Community Building, and Adaptation (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2006). 2 United States Census Bureau, “Foreign Born.” Accessed February 28, 2015. www. census.gov/topics/population/foreign-born/about.html. 3 Ibid. 4 Cited in Christine P. Gambino, Edward N. Trevelyan, and John Thomas Fitzwater, “The Foreign-Born Population from Africa, 2008–2012,” American Community Survey briefs, October 2014. 5 Ibid.

8

A. Oyebade and T. Falola

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

6 Ibid. 7 Department of Homeland Security. Accessed March 1, 2015. www.dhs.gov/profileslegal-permanent-residents-2012-country. 8 US Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2010. Accessed March 1, 2015. www.census.gov/prod/2012pubs/acs-19.pdf. 9 Ibid.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Part I

Historical and conceptual perspective

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

This page intentionally left blank

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

1

Pan-Africanism and the integration of continental and Diaspora Africans Victor Iyanya

Introduction The interference of Europeans in the affairs of Africans in the late fourteenth to early fifteenth century opened up Africa in two main ways. First was the unprecedented exposure that Africa (especially sub-Saharan Africa) began to have outside the continent, and second, and more importantly, was the fact that Africans gradually and ultimately became more aware of their fellow Africans in other parts of the continent. For instance, it is doubtful that any of the great Sudanic civilizations such as Ancient Ghana, Ancient Mali, and Songhai had adequate knowledge and/or understanding about the Bantu people of southern Africa, or even the diverse kingdoms that populate the east and central African region spanning through the Congo basin. Rather than learn about people such as themselves with whom they shared a biologically unifying bond of a common black race, most of the early Sudanese kingdoms/empires preferred to learn about, and indeed identified more closely with, the Semitic people who populated the Middle East because of their shared allegiance to the Islamic faith. This explains why the ancient Malian emperor Mansa Musa the Great could embark on an incredible trek together with his entourage from the Sudanese region of Africa to the Arabian city of Mecca, where they performed the annual Islamic pilgrimage known as Hajj. Considering the distance involved, and the nonexistence of any of the modern means of transportation at this time, that trip must have taken several months. So enormous was the volume of gold carried along on that trip that it forced down the price of the commodity throughout Mecca and the adjoining areas that year. Lawrence Ekpebu explains that Mansa Musa’s international exploits were not only in the eastern direction, but also in the direction of the west, across the Atlantic. According to Ekpebu: it was during the reign of Emperor Mansa Musa (1312–1337) that the black African mariners of the seafaring Empire reportedly crossed the Atlantic Ocean with 2,000 ships to the New World, a feat that the African explorers performed over a century before Christopher Columbus widely presented in world history as the one who “discovered” America.1

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

12

V. Iyanya

In spite of such great feats of exploration that pushed beyond the frontiers of Mansa Musa’s then known world, the great leader exhibited little or no practical interest in, much less fraternity with, other kingdoms/empires within the continent, especially those in sub-Saharan Africa that were contemporaneous with his reign over Mali. The pilgrimage reportedly performed by the ancient Malian ruling house in the fourteenth century is just one example of the rich crosscultural exchanges that took place between the inhabitants of North/East Africa and those of the Mesopotamian region in ancient times. Such cross-cultural exchanges long predate both Christianity and Islam. The story of the Israelites’ captivity in Egypt and Pharaoh’s reluctance to let them go is yet another example that amply attests to this fact. The founding of Islam in the early part of the seventh century ad, however, introduced an entirely new dimension to the nature of interaction between the peoples of these two locations. Not only did this bring about an influx of Islamic zealots, but also many of the early African converts to Islam who went on pilgrimage to Mecca never bothered to return. The significant percentage of African emigrants out of the continent during the first millennium ad is attributable to the fairly high incidence of pilgrimage non-returnees. This, however, did not generate as much concern as the subsequent migrations to Europe and especially the Americas that were to follow during the second millennium ad. This is understandable because, unlike the earlier phase that was characterized largely (if not entirely) by voluntary migrations, the second phase of migrations were almost entirely based on compulsion, as typified by the roughly four centuries of transatlantic slave trade. The only exceptions during the second millennium ad were Africans who were compelled by prevailing socioeconomic realities after the abolition of the slave trade to migrate out of the continent, mainly to the West.2 This discourse, however, dwells mainly on the descendants of those Africans that were forced to migrate during the era of the Atlantic Slave Trade rather than those who migrated either before or after that era. This is justifiable because, having migrated by choice, the latter can choose to maintain or not maintain contacts with their roots, whereas, the former, being descendants of people who were forcefully removed from Africa, had very slim chances of ever reconnecting with their biological ancestry. Throughout the duration of the Atlantic Slave Trade and beyond, there has always been a deep longing in the heart of most victims to some day rejoin their kinsmen back in the African continent.3 However, since the reality of the post-slavery era made it most unlikely that the ex-slaves would ever reunite with the same people with whom they shared blood ties, the idea of forging a bond of unity between continental and Diaspora Africans became the most realistic option. The foregoing accounts for the emergence of the ideology of united-Africans, which seeks to emphasize the racial distinctiveness of Africans, irrespective of their disparate locations all over the world, and the need for unity among all black people. Once this united-Africans philosophy began to gain ground at the turn of the nineteenth century, the foundation had been laid for the galvanization of efforts towards fostering unity among all

Pan-Africanism and integration 13 people of African descent, irrespective of their locations. The popularity of this movement continued progressively among African elites until it began to assume a life of its own, and was named Pan-Africanism.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Conceptual issues Two concepts that require clarification in terms of the broad and contextual senses of their usage in this chapter are: “Pan-Africanism” and “diaspora”. So interwoven are these two concepts that one can hardly explain either of them fully without making reference to the other. Pan-Africanism simply refers to the various activities by Africans over time and space, which are guided by the desire to create and sustain a consciousness of oneness among all people of African descent. This ideology has over the years found expression as anti-slavery, anti-colonial, anti-capitalist, and antiglobalization movements. Such movements, of different sizes, have manifested in virtually every region of the world inhabited by people of African descent. The baseline of Pan-Africanist ideology is that all people of the black race emanated exclusively from the African continent, and that, in spite of being significantly heterogeneous, African cultures have certain homogenously distinctive features as compared to all others cultures in the world. Moreover, since Africans share a common history of slavery, colonialism, and racism, they can only hope for a common destiny, which they alone can work towards improving. This explains the consensus opinion among scholars on what Pan-Africanism represents. Such unanimity of opinion also derives from its consistent character of expression over time and space. This quotation is typical of such opinions. “Pan-Africanism has been and continues to be the cooperative movement among people of African origin to unite their efforts in the struggle to liberate Africa and its scattered and suffering people.”4 That quotation succinctly captures the whole essence and philosophy of PanAfricanism. The only problem, however, is that Pan-Africanism, in both the ideological and pragmatic sense, has not been able to enunciate or demonstrate a truly workable road map capable of circumventing the barriers that have been placed in its path by those who benefit from the perpetual subjugation of African peoples. “Diaspora” on the other hand is a term that has its root in the Greek language. Its direct translation to English is the word “dispersion.” However, the term “Diaspora” has, over the years, enjoyed much wider appeal as compared to the word “dispersion.” This is mainly because of the former’s relatively wider applicability. Even though the two words mean the same thing, the former tends to refer more specifically to the migratory dispersal of people or spreading out of human culture, rather than the generalized sense of dispersal that is implied by the latter. This slight variation is perhaps attributable to subtle evolutionary changes in usage and connotation over time. In its contemporary usage, the term diaspora is understood in two main senses. Diaspora in one sense refers to the dispersal or displacement of people (for whatever reason) away from their original or ancestral

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

14

V. Iyanya

homeland.5 Yet, in another sense, it also refers to the people so displaced. This second context represents the definition on which this chapter is anchored. Among all situations of dispersal or displacement of people from their original homes world over, the “Jewish Diaspora” is undisputedly the most intensively and extensively discussed. In fact, about 90 percent of all available literature on the subject of “Diaspora” dwells either mainly or at least marginally on the “Jewish Diaspora.” It may therefore not be completely out of place to argue that the concept of the African Diaspora, which began to gain popularity only after the 1948 formation of the State of Israel, may have been originally espoused with the aim of winning the same kind of sympathy that had been associated with the Jewish Diaspora. Moreover, since the succeeding years following the formation of the Israeli nation-state coincided with a period of revolutionary movements for independence throughout Africa, this expression must have been perceived as having encapsulated the prevailing socio-political mood of the time. This is not to say that the phenomenon presently known as the African Diaspora never existed or was never discussed before that period. Indeed, the desire to sustain a bond of affinity with Africans inhabiting locations outside the African continent had engaged the attention of African elites since the end of the Atlantic Slave Trade. However, Africans in those early days did not see anything wrong with being referred to as “blacks or negroes.” It was therefore more common to talk about Black or Negro populations living outside the African continent. The usage of African Diaspora was, however, used later to gain wider appeal among Africans, not only because of its symbolic (though unstated) association with the experience of the Jews, but also because it affords a speaker/writer the convenience of being brief.

The origin and evolution of the African Diaspora The mass movement of people from one location to another has arguably taken place in all regions of the world at different periods in the history of mankind. Slavery in ancient times, attributable to a number of factors ranging from economic and/or environmental, to socio-cultural, has also accounted for such movements.6 While such movements were sometimes voluntary, they were at other times the only options available for continued survival. While factors such as the search for more arable lands, better living standards, and better climatic conditions can be classified under causes of voluntary migration, others, such as warfare, drought, pestilence, and slavery often forced people to migrate. The African Diaspora has become such a topical issue in contemporary times for three related reasons. First, Africans whose forebears were forcibly removed from the continent, rather than migrating voluntarily, constitute the majority of all Diaspora Africans. Second, the Pull factor (demand for African slaves) accounts for a much higher percentage of all African emigrations from the continent over time and space than any Push factor. Third, Africa’s relative underdevelopment has been largely attributed to the mass exodus of able-bodied Africans while the transatlantic slave trade lasted.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Africanism and integration 15 While it is difficult to ascertain with absolute precision the period in which the first African must have stepped off the soil of the African continent, one can safely say (as noted earlier) that it far predates the founding of both the Christian and Islamic religions. It is also difficult to know whether it was Africans who first ventured out of the continent, or foreigners who first came to Africa. Nonetheless, evidence of cross-cultural exchanges between the peoples of the Old world (Eurasia, Near East, and Africa), indicates cross-cultural ties among these three main locations from the earliest times. It was the emergence of Christianity and Islam in the first and seventh centuries ad respectively that boosted already existing interactions, thus facilitating unprecedented levels of migration in all directions.7 Much as a good number of Europeans and Arabs who migrated voluntarily or were lured or forced to migrate ended up as slaves in ancient Egypt, so did many Africans later end up as slaves in ancient Greece and ancient Rome. Slavery in this sense was, however, at a much lower scale as compared to the Atlantic Slave Trade. First, the practice was hardly given any racial interpretation on the part of either the perpetrators or the victims. Moreover, the level of human degradation involved was relatively minimal since the slaves only did menial and domestic chores compared to the hard labor on plantations that mostly characterized the Atlantic Slave Trade. The total numbers of people involved was also relatively negligible, as compared to that of the Atlantic Salve Trade, which was to evolve many centuries afterwards. These differences, therefore, explain the vagueness associated with this ancient dimension of slavery, which included, but was not restricted to, Africans. Meanwhile, considering the relatively insignificant number of African emigrants in ancient times, it was practically impossible to remain banded together as exclusive African groups, as has been the case in the Americas and particularly the Caribbean. Rather, the upsurge of African emigration to Europe and Asia, which followed the founding of Christianity and Islam respectively, resulted in uneven dispersal of Africans far afield. Inter-marriage between Africans and members of their host communities also produced diverse degrees of mixed races, thus raising a fundamental question about the actual racial status of some Diaspora Africans. In line with this trajectory of thinking, one can even explore the possibility that some people of African descent may be among the Asians who were believed to have crossed into North America through the Bering Strait (ice-land bridge) about 20,000–35,000 years ago.8 As already stated, the modern dimension of the African Diaspora is markedly different from the ancient dimension. Unlike the ancient dimension of the African Diaspora that was established and sustained through the interest of individuals and small groups, the Atlantic Slave Trade thrived on a well-articulated international economic system. It first began with the coming of Europeans to the Atlantic coast of Africa during the second quarter of the second millennium ad. Initially, Africans were merely taken to Europe as a way of building confidence between the Africans and the Europeans. However, the sudden upsurge in the demand for slave labor, which soon outstripped the supply in American plantations, accounts for the gradual shifting of attention in the direction of Africa.9

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

16

V. Iyanya

This, according to Raymond Garvins, was premised mainly on the rare ability of Africans to withstand rigor, and their superior resistance to diseases. The desire for cheap (slave) labor to service the European factories in which the products of American plantations were mostly processed provided the nexus for the infamous “Triangular Trade.” By the time the Atlantic Slave Trade finally came to an end in the late nineteenth century, too many Africans had been uprooted from the continent and planted in America and Europe. It was simply unrealistic ever to hope for a complete reversal to the status quo ante, as some Africanists were later to demand. Not only had the population of the African Diaspora risen exponentially, but many inter-marriages across racial lines had produced offspring who could gain full acceptance neither among African nor among non-African races. On the other hand, it would be extremely difficult for African parents of such persons to part ways with them in the name of a “back to Africa” project. Colonialism, which was later to replace the Atlantic Slave Trade, was ultimately aimed at incorporating Africa into the Western capitalist system. Based on arbitrarily created nation states, the inalienable right of Africans for selfdetermination was brazenly subjugated to the whims and caprices of the West. In other to facilitate colonial rule, many opportunities were created for Africans to visit Europe and America. While many Africans who underwent training in diverse disciplines and/or vocations later returned to their respective countries of origin, others stayed back for sundry reasons, never bothering to return. By the time colonialism ended, the steady stream of emigrants from Africa, together with the ever-growing population of transplanted Africans, had swelled the total population of Africans living outside the continent to an incredible high. This trend was later to increase in tempo during the post-independence era, since African states entered into different kinds of mutual cooperation with other nonAfrican states, especially their erstwhile colonial masters. Such relations across boundaries not only manifested itself at the level of transacting government business, but also paved the way for more and more Africans to pursue their own personal interests in other locations outside the continent. The ever-increasing hype associated with the term “globalization,” especially in the last decade, merely confirms the extent to which inter-personal interactions across national boundaries have nearly neutralized the rigidity hitherto associated with boundaries of nation states. The economies of most African states are weak, and globalization encourages massive migration of people from Third World Countries (especially Africa) to counties with stronger economies. These continuous armies of African emigrants, together with those earlier transplanted to the West in the era of slave trading, constitute what is presently known as the African Diaspora.

Origin and evolution of Pan-Africanism To the extent that the terms “Diaspora Africans” and “Pan-Africanism” are somewhat intertwined, one can hardly be fully explained without mentioning the other. In fact, Pan-Africanism was conceived primarily as a platform for the

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Africanism and integration 17 enhancement of the unification of all people of African descent, irrespective of their diverse geographical locations, both within and outside the continent. The earliest activities by Diaspora Africans that were most likely to have laid the foundation for the Pan-Africanist movement were their assertive exhibitions of various aspects of socio-cultural affinity that they shared with their forebears in continental Africa. This was done through two main means of expression. On the one hand, some of the ex-slaves, realizing that they could never rejoin their biological kinsmen in their original homes from where they had been removed, began to replicate their indigenous belief systems in the new locations where they found themselves.10 On the other hand, and more prominently, were Africans who had accepted the doctrine of Christianity, but preferred to carve out a new model of the religion with uniquely African cultural flavor and African interpretations.11 In both cases, the forms and content of the two religious beliefs were corrupted. While this was done inadvertently in the case of the indigenous beliefs concentrated mainly within the Caribbean, it was done intentionally to make a point in regard to the African churches that were concentrated within the United States. This fact applies to all variants of the Christian doctrine as established by Africans, which were to emerge later. The whole idea of remodeling the Christian doctrine to suit the unique culture and historical experience of Africans began to brew as a form of protest against the various forms of racial segregation which Africans were subjected to within the church. Moreover, even beyond the daily acts of discrimination, Africans soon began to perceive a racial undertone in the Christian theology which describes them as descendants of Ham (the cursed son of Noah).12 The first in the series of attempts to fashion out a uniquely African variant of the Christian doctrine began in the United States during the later part of the eighteenth century. First to emerge was the Free African Society, which was established in 1787 by two African Methodist priests (Richard Allen and Absalom Jones). The duo pointed out the glaring peculiarity in the history and circumstance of Africans, and the need to take this into account in their perception and interpretation of Christian theology. During the remainder of the nineteenth century, the African variant of Christianity had established considerably, having significantly checkmated the daily acts of discrimination against Africans within churches. Consequently, from the beginning of the twentieth century, attention began to shift towards the perceived racial undertone in the Christian theology. This period therefore witnessed the sudden resurgence of Ethiopia’s religious symbolism among Diaspora Africans in the United States and the Caribbean. A passage in Psalm 68:31 of the Christian bible which states thus; “Ethiopia shall soon stretch forth its hands unto God” suddenly began to gain prominence.13 This passage was understood to mean that the time was already near when the people of Africa (symbolized by Ethiopia) would become God’s favored people on earth. Ethiopianism, which was essentially a specific re-branding of Pan-Africanism, was therefore not just a spiritual/religious postulate, but also had socio-cultural, socio-political, and socio-economic dimensions. However, the religious dimension continued to

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

18

V. Iyanya

command a considerably wider appeal and to facilitate a greater degree of linkage between diaspora and continental Africans throughout the remainder of the nineteenth century and well into the twentieth. The founding of several branches of “Ethiopian Churches” in Southern Africa beginning in 1892 is attributable to these linkages.14 While the cultural form of Ethiopianism took advantage of every opportunity to exhibit Africa’s cultural heritage, the political and economic forms were used to canvass the political and economic rights of Africans. For instance, Booker T. Washington (1856–1915) was ready to accept some lack of socio-cultural and socio-political freedom to Africans in the United States, provided that their economic liberation was guaranteed. Intellectually inclined activists such as H. E. Williams and W. E. B. Du Bois would later advocate total emancipation for Africans. Towards the end of the nineteenth century, a couple of intellectual discourses were organized sporadically. The first was the 1893 Chicago Conference on Africa, convened by a handful of African intellectuals, followed by other similar conferences convened by Henry Sylvester William in London under the auspices of the African Association. These series of conferences, which continued to sustain the tempo of African activism, ultimately culminated in the convening of the first ever Pan-African Conference in July 1900.15 The aim of the 1900 conference was to provide a common platform for all the numerous forms of anti-racial struggles by Africans throughout the world. Held in London, the 1900 conference was attended by delegates from Africa and the United States, in addition to those already in Europe. During this conference, the African Association, which had been established in 1887 by H. S. William, was replaced by the Pan-African Association (PAA). Beyond this, however, the conference recorded minimal success in terms of achieving its objectives, partly because attendance from continental Africa was low, and also because the white dominated media were not willing to assist in promoting the cause of African liberation. The movement therefore underwent a period of inactivity for a while. Only in the early 1920s did one of those who had earlier formed the PAA in 1900 (W. E. B. Du Bois) manage to convene several more conferences. The conferences of the 1920s recorded significant improvements over that of 1900 in several ways.16 First, total attendance had risen from slightly above thirty in 1900 to well over 100. Similarly, over a third of the total attendance came from continental Africa as compared to just four who had attended in 1900. Conferences held in the 1920s took place in different European countries rather than concentrating only in London as had been done in the past. Meanwhile, Marcus Garvey, a Jamaican civil rights activist who had earlier encountered some of the PAA elements during his two-year stint in London (1912–1914), was greatly motivated to pursue the agenda of African liberation. He took up the challenge and moved to the United States where, beginning in 1916, he established the UNIA and a host of business enterprises including the periodic publication of the Negro World, with which he hoped to fund his African liberation project. His activities were, however, cut short in 1922 when he was framed and imprisoned, but latter released and deported back to

Pan-Africanism and integration 19 Jamaica. With the deportation of Garvey and the relative silence of Du Bois towards the end of 1920s, there was yet another lull in Pan-Africanist activities for a while. It took the 1935–1936 invasion of Ethiopia by Italy for PanAfricanism to resurge in an unprecedented way, among both diaspora and continental Africans. The invasion drew sharp reactions from all people of African descent throughout the world. Consequently, tremendous sacrifices in time, energy, and resources were made for the liberation of Ethiopia, which was seen by many Africans as the bastion of undisrupted and undiluted African culture and religion. The fervor generated among Africans by the Ethiopian invasion was to be sustained until the eventual dismantling of colonial rule throughout Africa. However, the major foundation for the nationalist independence struggle was laid during the 1945 Pan-African Congress held in Manchester. Apart from recording an unprecedented level of attendance from continental Africa, conclusions reached at the Manchester conference were further reaching and of more pragmatic effect than ever before, thus creating more determination in the minds of the African nationalists who attended. Additionally, most of the independence activists who eventually took over power from the colonial masters had earlier studied, or were studying, in the West, where they formed different student unions and associations. Prominent among these were the West African Student Union (WASU) led by J. E. Casely Hayford, which served as a rallying point for Africans studying abroad.18 African students were also inspired, through their direct contact with some of the greatest Pan-Africanists of their time such as H. S. William, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Marcus Garvey among others, to engage in liberation struggles on their return to their counties of origin. Pan-Africanism reached an unprecedented climax following the Manchester conference of 1945. That conference generated and sustained the intellectual ferment that ultimately culminated in the attainment of political independence by most African countries. This new ferment brought into the limelight two prominent Pan-Africanists (Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X) in the United States.19 Some leading African independence activists eventually entered into active partnership with either or both of these individuals while the agitation for independence lasted, thus fostering solidarity between diaspora and continental Africans. Malcolm X, for instance, visited Egypt, Sudan, Nigeria, and Ghana in 1959. He also represented the United States–African Diaspora at the second meeting of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) held in Cairo. Martin Luther King Jr., on the other hand, attended Ghana’s independence celebration in 1957 at the invitation of Kwame Nkrumah, during which he met with nationalists from different African countries. Both Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. served as rallying points for the two opposing groups (Casablanca and Monrovian blocs). This ultimately helped in neutralizing the dichotomy stemming from the radical approach of the former, and the conservative posture of the later. Between the late 1950s and the early 1960s, most African countries attained independence. It therefore became imperative for the two opposing blocs to

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

17

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

20

V. Iyanya

reach some sort of compromise if they were to remain united in spite of their differences in ideological inclinations. That compromise was eventually brokered by Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, thus paving the way for the establishment of the OAU in May 1963. The OAU was formed in line with the position earlier canvassed by the Monrovian bloc, which was to facilitate cooperation among member states without conceding the sovereignty of individual states. The terms of the compromise stipulated the initial adoption of the position canvassed by the Monrovian bloc, after which a series of gradual steps would be taken, ultimately culminating in the establishment of a United States of Africa, as suggested by the Casablanca bloc. The initial commitment to full implementation of the terms of this compromise was, however, abandoned as soon as independence was attained. The abandonment of this compromise by member nations is, however, more incidental than deliberate, since each member state had enough internal problems to contend with.20 Moreover, the respective nationstates soon began to realize that the independence they got was only political, since the economies of African states had been cleverly tied to the apron strings of the West through capitalism. Consequently, over the last couple of decades, virtually all African states have struggled unsuccessfully against neocolonialism, while Africans in the diaspora have been struggling for selfdetermination and total liberation. While both sides have been trying to take advantage of Pan-Africanism in building and sustaining linkages among themselves, it is doubtful whether such linkages have had significant impact on the living standards of Africans, whether in the continent or in the diaspora.

Major impediments to the full realization of Pan-Africanist ideals One must begin by acknowledging the modest achievements recorded by PanAfricanism over the years. Pan-Africanism has no doubt enhanced a greater sense of self-worth and self-confidence among numerous Africans, in addition to enhancing a common identity and fraternity among all people of African descent. It has also facilitated the ability of African people the world over to articulate and project a harmonized viewpoint on matters that pertain to their collective existence in the global arena. Pan-Africanism has succeeded considerably in tackling the various dimensions of social degradation, economic subjugation, and political deprivation that Africans have been subjected to over time. Neither the Atlantic Slave Trade, nor colonialism, could have succeeded the way they did without the active collaboration of some Africans who betrayed their fellows. It was therefore not accidental that the accentuation of Pan-Africanist ideology and the climax of fraternity between continental and Diaspora Pan-Africanists towards the end of the 1950s coincided with the dismantling of colonialism in most parts of Africa. In other words, the rapidity with which the attainment of independence swept through most parts of Africa between the late 1950s and the early 1960s is mainly attributable to the resolve of Africans to close ranks and join forces against the imperialists’ forces, through the platform provided by Pan-Africanism.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Africanism and integration 21 It is, however, unfortunate that independence in most African states has not translated into a better life for the inhabitants of continental Africa. Similarly, it is doubtful whether all the liberation struggles by Africans in the diaspora has brought about improved standards of living for them. Consequently, Africans, irrespective of their locations in the world, rank among the lowest socioeconomically. Not only does vertical analysis depict them as belonging to the lowest socio-economic echelon in areas where they co-habit with members of other races, but horizontal analysis also depicts them as being mostly concentrated in regions of the world with the poorest living standards. The United Nations Organization (UNO) 2012 Annual Report, when studied closely, presents most Africans (whether continental or diaspora) as living below the global poverty benchmark stipulated by the United Nations. Such living conditions are usually characterized by squalor and abject poverty, stark illiteracy, widespread diseases and high levels of morbidity and mortality. This naturally makes it a herculean task to launch and sustain a platform for the total liberation of all people of African descent. The issue of poverty is so dismal, so deeply entrenched, and so widespread that it is extremely difficult to garner the enormous resources required to extricate all Africans from the intricate web of capitalism. Not only does it require huge amounts of funds to facilitate sufficient networking (communication and transportation) between Africans in diverse locations over the world, but it also requires even more funds to create a viable alternative for the international capitalist system that has evolved over centuries. The main alternative to capitalism is socialism/communism. At the peak of the Cold War era, most African countries dabbled in socialism in one form or another. The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, however, resulted in the drying up of moral and material support for diverse forms of experimentation with socialism.21 Consequently, all developing countries thenceforth had the option of being realistic by aligning with the West, or continuing to be idealistic in sticking with Eastern ideologies. African states that experimented with socialism were bound to ultimately fail one after another since the web that is spun around them by Western capitalism is so intricate that it tends to ensnare developing countries permanently.22 Beyond the purely ideological critiques usually leveled against socialism by the proponents of capitalism, there is the more fundamental problem of actually demonstrating the true ethos of socialism. While proponents of capitalism hardly make any pretense about exploiting the disadvantaged in order to perpetuate the dominance of the privileged, the main actors under socialism (especially in the case of Africa) appeared to have paid only lip service to socialist ideology. The fact that most African countries were under military rule for the better part of the Cold War era implied that such governments were not necessarily answerable to the people. It was therefore common for African states to openly profess tight control of recourse allocation by government for the purpose of improving welfare among the masses, while on the other hand compromising the entire socialist ideology through nebulous and/or dubious implementation of policies. For instance, allegations were rampant about inflation of contract sums, especially those targeted

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

22

V. Iyanya

at implementation of welfare-related policies, in order to dubiously enrich major political actors and their cronies. Worse still, such projects usually ended up as shoddy jobs, or were completely abandoned in some cases. That not only negates the main ethos of socialism, but also further widens the scope and scale of poverty throughout Africa.23 The ever-widening gap between the rich and the poor in postcolonial Africa lucidly attests to the unevenness of wealth distribution by nearly all governments, irrespective of socialist or capitalist inclinations. With pervasive poverty in most parts of Africa, the average African is naturally most concerned about how to obtain and guarantee the continual supply of the very basic necessities of life (food, shelter and clothing). The integration of their society into the international capitalist system placed the average African at the lowest economic echelon. They have to engage perpetually in one form of labor or another for a paltry income that just keeps them alive and brings them back to work the following day. For the petit bourgeois who usually have a little in excess of basic needs, there is such a multitude of calls for the money that such an excess can scarcely go round. For those that are very wealthy, capitalism makes perfect sense, simply because they are beneficiaries of the capitalist system. It is therefore extremely difficult to mobilize the very poor, who are the vast majority, for any sustained liberation struggle. Unless one is willing and capable of taking over their livelihood, the whole idea of Pan-Africanism can never fly among such people. Illiteracy compounds the problem even more, since it is responsible for the alarming level of ignorance in most African societies. While the traditional forms of education that existed in different parts of Africa before the advent of the Europeans were quite adequate for the realities of that era, the new reality foisted on Africans by the Atlantic Slave Trade and colonialism had rendered such education moribund in the succeeding era.24 Incidentally, this new reality is the basis upon which a far greater percentage of Africans are often described as illiterates. Africans who did not conform in the minutest ways to this new form of literacy are addressed as stark illiterates. Illiteracy in this sense is certainly debilitating, considering that most continental Africans who belong to this category are not even aware that African people exist elsewhere beyond their immediate localities, or at best beyond their respective countries. According to UNESCO statistics released in 2010, only a relatively small percentage of the entire African populace ever makes it to high school,25 and these are the only ones who get to know that there was such a thing as the Atlantic Slave Trade, which displaced many of their fellow Africans beyond the sea. An even smaller percentage ever makes it to college, and these are the only ones who understand the need for all Africans to come together and fight for their liberation. Among these, only a relatively insignificant percentage ever feels the commitment to get actively involved with such a thing as Pan-Africanism. Unfortunately, PanAfricanism as a purely African-elitist philosophy has difficulty in achieving its desired objective. This partly explains why Pan-Africanism has, over the years, recorded far greater impact in the diaspora than in continental Africa. The likes of Marcus Garvey, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr., etc., took advantage of

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Africanism and integration 23 their unusual gift of oratory to carry along the deprived people of their times and locations. Hence, they were almost idolized by their followers, and cut across the different strata of their respective societies. On the other hand, no continental African, not even Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, was ever able to enjoy this sort of dogmatic followership based purely on Pan-Africanist ideology. This is simply because a vast majority of continental Africans are either totally or partially ignorant about the whole idea of Pan-Africanism. Since knowledge, as they say, is power, wide propagation of consciousness for African liberation is one of the very first prerequisites for the attainment of such liberation. Western education therefore remains the only realistic tool capable of ultimately creating allinclusive awareness about Pan-Africanism among the huge continental African populace. Unfortunately, in spite of all the hype about state provision of free and/or compulsory Western education in certain parts of Africa, only a relatively small percentage of the entire African population has been able to acquire the requisite Western education for this purpose. Disease is yet another impediment to the full realization of Pan-Africanist ideals. Though the high mortality rate associated with regions dominated by Africans is directly attributable to inadequacy of modern healthcare, more fundamental is the prevalence of conditions that enable diseases to thrive in the first place. In the near absence, or almost complete absence, of proper refuse and sewage disposal systems, diseases are rampant, and sometimes assume epidemic levels. The World Health Organization (WHO) Annual Report–2007 puts the global total estimate of those without access to adequate refuse and sewage disposal systems at about 2.4 billion. Since such people are mostly concentrated in Third World Countries, it is obvious that the majority of them are people of African descent. Moreover, it is usually the least economically advantaged people that cannot adhere to some of the most common rules of hygiene, such as minimizing the sharing of very personal effects such as clothing, bedding, cutlery, etc. As well as living mostly in filthy environments, they are often overcrowded both in terms of closely packed neighborhoods, and numbers of people inhabiting each homestead. One must, however, add here that illiteracy and ignorance are not the only factors responsible for overcrowding, but also the cultural factor. Most African communities have a history of living under such conditions in the distant past when they needed to band together as a way of protecting themselves from sporadic slave raids, especially during the era of Atlantic Slave Trade.26 Over the centuries, therefore, this has been passed down to their descendants as a way of life. The social cohesiveness that results from this is usually seen by most Africans (including the well educated ones) as an aspect of the African culture they should be proud of rather than discard. It is therefore no wonder that many educated elites are among the inhabitants of overcrowded neighborhoods and/or homesteads. To worsen matters, most African countries are unable to spread the distribution of basic infrastructure and social amenities evenly across their countries.27 Since such facilities are unevenly concentrated within the cities, to the exclusion of the rural areas, people continually migrate in droves from rural areas to the urban centers. Most of these infrastructural

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

24

V. Iyanya

facilities were built at a time when the populations of such cities were much smaller than their present levels of congestion. In fact, in some areas, the infrastructure (such as sources of public water supply, public health facilities, electricity, railways, etc.) has not only become too small for the populations, but is completely outdated, since it sometimes even dates to the colonial era. Too many people competing for infrastructure and amenities means that some naturally have to be pushed out to the adjoining areas (urban slums) where none exist. Indeed, not all who come to inhabit urban slums do so with any measure of despondency. There are those who see it as a very natural way of living, and are in fact very happy to inhabit such locations. Most people in this category have come from villages where for some reason the population out-grew the habitable land available. This is common in river areas and areas with excessively rugged terrain where people have no choice but to live in closely packed settlements and use the remaining land for agricultural purposes. For such people, life in the urban slum is even a slight improvement over conditions they left behind at home. Urban slums therefore serve usually as a melting pot for people of divergent origins, some pushed out of the cities, others from the rural areas, and others born there. The only common factor they share is a low standard of living typified by human congestion under unhygienic conditions, poverty, and susceptibility to diseases. This, therefore, explains why such conditions of overcrowding have not only persisted into contemporary times, but have become more acute in urban slums as compared even to typical African villages.

Conclusion A cursory glance through a global index of living standards appears to project all inhabitants of Western countries (including those of African descent) as faring better than the inhabitants of Third World Countries. In other words, African inhabitants of industrialized countries are adjudged to be better off than their continental relatives. While this may be true in some cases, a closer scrutiny of actual reality on the ground reveals that it is certainly not true in most cases. Allegations of dishonesty in the computation of national economic statistics of developing countries by different agencies of the United Nations have persisted over the years, mainly because such statistics are usually too generalized. For instance, such statistics are usually more concerned with distribution of per capita income along the lines of age, gender, occupation etc., to the exclusion of other considerations such as race, religion, and culture. It is, however, ironic that racial division is arguably one of the most fundamental bases for economic deprivation. Hence, any analysis of wealth distribution devoid of racial consideration can hardly be a fair assessment of the living conditions of all categories of people inhabiting different countries. Moreover, most internationally acclaimed country-by-country global analyses of per capita incomes usually reveal that countries almost exclusively populated by Africans generally rank lower than those dominated by members of other races.28 Consequently, in order for PanAfricanism to truly serve as a formidable platform for the enhancement of

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Africanism and integration 25 struggles against various forms of anti-African posturing and the fulfillment of the aspirations of all Africans for better living conditions, a better sense of identity, and a more complete sense of self actualization, it must first address the major ills of poverty, illiteracy and disease. African states must also be willing to demonstrate a deeper sense of maturity in their dealings with one another, rather than engaging in disputes and/or warfare among themselves. This, unfortunately, has become embarrassingly too frequent and persistent, as it most often defies all solutions, thereby subjecting the entire Pan-Africanist ideal to ridicule.

Notes 1 Lawrence Ekpebu, Africa and the International Political System (Ibadan, Nigeria: Sam Bookman Publishers, 1999), 46–53. 2 Timothy J. Hatton and Jeffrey G. Williamson, “Demographic and Economic Pressure on Emigration out of Africa,” Scandinavian Journal of Economics (Wiley: online, no. 3, 2004): 465–486. 3 Tiffany R. Patterson and Robin D. G. Kelly, “Unfinished Migrations: Reflections on the African Diaspora and the Making of the Modern World,” African Studies Review, 42 (2000): 11–45. 4 Michael William, “The Pan-African Movement,” in Mario Azevedo (ed.), Africana Studies: A Survey of Africa and the African Diaspora, (Durham, NC, Carolina Academic Press, 1993), 169. 5 Colin Palmer, “Defining and Studying the Modern African Diaspora,” Journal of Negro History, 85 (2000): 27–32. 6 Arnold H. M. Jones, “Slavery in the Ancient World,” Economic History Review, 9 (1956): 185–199. 7 Glick Schiller, Linda Basch, and Christina Szanton Blanc, “Transnationalism: A New Analytical Framework for Understanding Migrations,” in Nina Glick Schiller (ed.), Towards a Transnational Perspective on Migration (New York Academic Press 1996), 1–24. 8 James E. Dixon, Bones, Boats, and Bison: Archeology and the First Colonization of Western North America (USA: Amazon Books, 2003), 52–58. 9 Raymond Gavins, “Diaspora Africans and Slavery,” in Azevedo (ed.), Africana Studies, 87–102. 10 Stuart Hall, “Cultural Identity and Diaspora,” in Jonathan Rutherford (ed.), Identity: Community, Culture and Difference (London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1990), 222–237. 11 Milton C. Sernett, Black Religion in American Evangelism: White Protestantism, Plantation Missions and the Flowering of Negro Christianity 1787–1865 (Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1981), 1–25. 12 Bahru Zewde, A History of Modern Ethiopia 1855–1974, East African Studies Series (London: Currey Publishers, 1991), 52–70. 13 Noel L. Erskine, Decolonizing Theology: A Caribbean Perspective (New York: Orbis Books, 1981), 15–32. 14 Getachew Mataferia, “Ethiopian Connection to the Pan-African Movement,” in Journal of Third World Studies, 12 (1995): 300–325. 15 Imanuel Geiss, The Pan-African Movement: A History of Pan-Africanism in America, Europe and Africa (New York: Africana Publishers, 1980), 1–18. 16 Ronald W. Walter, Pan-Africanism in the African Diaspora: An Analysis of Modern Political Movements, (Michigan: Wayne State Press, 1993), 1–50. 17 Tony Martin, Race First: The Ideological and Organizational Struggles of Marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association (Washington: Howard University Press, 1982).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

26

V. Iyanya

18 Hakim Adi, West Africans in Britain 1900–1960: Nationalism, Pan-Africanism and Communism (London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1998), 15–27. 19 James L. Taylor, Black Nationalism in the United States: From Malcolm X to Barack Obama (New York: Lynne Rienner, 2011), 1–30. 20 Otu C. Amate, Inside the OAU: Pan-Africanism in Practice (New York: St. Martin Press, 1986), 1–12. 21 David R. Marple, The Collapse of the Soviet Union 1985–1991 (New York: Pearson, 2004), 12–32. 22 Sonia Plaza and Timothy Raeymaekers, Collapse or Order? Questioning State Collapse in Africa (Conflict Research Group: Ghent University Press, 2007). 23 Johannes Seroto, “Indigenous Education During the Pre-Colonial Period in Southern Africa,” Indilinga African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems (UZ Foundation: No. 10, 2011), 77–88. 24 Roy Carr-Hill, “International Literacy Statistics: Concepts, Methodology, and Current Data,” in Katja Frostell and Jose Pessoa (eds.), International Literary Statistics: A Review of Concepts (Montreal: UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2008). 25 UNESCO Monitoring Report 2010: Reaching the Marginalized—Regional Fact Sheet for Sun-Saharan Africa. 26 Edward Reynolds, Stand the Storm: A History of the Atlantic Slave Trade (New York: Allison & Bushy, 1986), 33–52. 27 Theophilus O. Fadayomi, Migration, Development and Urbanization Policies in SubSaharan Africa (Ibadan, Nigeria: CODESRIA Book Series, 1992), 27–30. 28 Joseph E. Stiglitz, Globalization and its Discontents (New York: Norton & Co. 2002), 15–32. See also: Ann-Louise Colgan, Hazardous to Health: The World Bank and IMF in Africa (Transcript of Press Briefing organized by University of Pennsylvania: African Studies Centre, Washington: April 18 2002).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Part II

Continental expressions and Diasporan identities

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

This page intentionally left blank

2

The young Igbo Diaspora in the United States

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Uchenna Onuzulike

Introduction There is an ongoing debate and tension within the old and new African Diasporas about how to retain African cultures and ethnic identities,1 in this case those of the Igbo second generation.2 According to Padilla, ethnicity refers to an individual’s membership in a social system that shares a common ancestral heritage.3 Collier observes, “while ethnicity is not static and is socially constructed across time and space, it is also ending to some degree.”4 The aim of this chapter is to examine how second-generation Igbo (SGI) young adults in the United States keep connected with the Igbo community in the United States and in Nigeria in the context of Igbo ethnic identity, which is also referred to as Igboness in this study. Igboness is described as Igbo ideology, identity, culture, practices, beliefs, norms, and values that are expected to be honored and displayed by members of Igbo groups. This perceived Igboness, or Igbo consciousness, is always evolving, because culture is not static, especially in the context of the Igbo diaspora and the second generation.5 Research shows that second-generation young adults often maintain a hybrid identity, so they “are experiencing multiple and contradictory tugs, messages, and pushes and pulls.”6 What emerged, however, were dialectical concerns expressed by the SGIs that led to an underlying question: what is the emotional state of mind of these second-generation children in the diaspora?7 Scholars have explored the ethnic and racial identities of second-generation African Diasporas in the United States including the transnational lives of West Indians,8 ethnic identification among second-generation Haitian immigrants,9 and transnational parenting in Ghanaian immigrant families.10 While the majority of research on second-generation Nigerians in America has focused on education,11 little specific attention has been paid to identity issues12 and the Igbo counterpart because this generation arguably is the “first” second-generation of Igbo immigrants in the United States.13 In this study, second generations are classified as including children born in the United States to two Igbo parents or as Igbo from Nigeria who migrated to the United States by the age of six. This study focuses on ethnic identity connection among SGIs in the diaspora. In this context, culture is “an enduring [identity] and changing, situated and

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

30

U. Onuzulike

transcendent, [re-]co-constructed set of communicative practices and interpretative frames shared by a group.”14 Ideally, relational dialectics theory (RDT) is implied. RDT predicts that dialogue is essential to every person and each communication.15 RDT is mirrored where contradictions and tensions in community engagement are managed. RDT permits scholars to explore lived experiences from the fusion of contrasting and the interaction of challenging discourses.16 Utilizing RDT suggests a push and pull among the SGIs in their connection with the Igbo in the United States and in Nigeria via various channels, including community associations, organizations, and the Internet. This study employed the qualitative research method of in-depth interviewing. Twelve SGIs who were residing in the Washington, DC area were interviewed. The findings reveal that co-ethnic young Igbo organizations, associations, and social groups played a primary role in how the SGIs present their ethnic and transnational selves in the diaspora. The implications suggest that how the SGI young adults enact themselves is structured around the dialectical tension of ethnic construction and negotiation.

Background and literature review The primordial homeland of Ndi-Igbo is located in the southeastern part of Nigeria. Ethnographic research on Igbo residents in Chicago found that it is not unusual for Igbo in the diaspora to identify themselves as Igbo as opposed to Nigerian.17 This finding may date back to prior to the Biafran–Nigerian Civil War (1967–1970). Nonetheless, as Ola Uduku articulated, “whilst most older Igbo in their 50s [60s] still express a wish to go ‘home,’ their offspring, many born in the diaspora, are less sure about where their loyalties lie.”18 Since the Igbo are continuing their heritage in the diaspora,19 this mindset may be undergoing a change, especially with the tensions and insecurity that cloud the homeland. Uduku notes that: As a second generation of Igbos reach maturity, new issues of identity and relationships to “Igboland” are having to be redefined. The connection to Igboland remains strong as most visit eastern Nigeria during vacations, and the hometown union movements ensure that there is regular contact with other Igbo families in the diaspora.20 Uduku notes that bicultural identities and loyalties can normally “pose a problem for diaspora-educated Igbo youths.”21 Uduku further suggests: The proposed Saturday Igbo language schools for American Igbo youths will need more support and relevance to begin to successfully espouse and promote a twenty-first century Igbo identity, relevant to a sophisticated youth. Also in countries with smaller, less established, diaspora populations this may not be economically or logistically possible.22

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The young Igbo Diaspora

31

With the constant presence of intergenerational conflicts within the Igbo world, this study “also demonstrate[s] certain tensions inherent in this process of ethnic reproduction and tensions expressive of ideological challenges by the second generation.”23 By observing the Igboness and dialectical tensions between SGI young adults and their parents, this study can contribute to an understanding of the identity struggles among SGI young adults in the United States. Relevant research done on Nigerian second-generation immigrants who were residing in the San Francisco Bay Area suggests that children born to Nigerian immigrant parents use co-ethnic activities to remain connected to their ancestral roots.24 Balogun indicated that many of his participants “revealed that exposure to a co-ethnic community from a young age played a critical role in their identity formation not only as children but also throughout their lives.”25 The early exposure to the co-ethnic community played a role in building and shaping their transnational practices, whereby they often visited the ancestral homeland or connected to family members in Nigeria via new and social media. As for the SGI young adults in this study, they often try to educate themselves through social media, books, co-ethnic groups in the USA, young Igbo organizations in the USA, relatives in Nigeria, and frequent visits to the parents’ homeland. Balogun found that “participants who had frequent contact with a close-knit Nigerian community tended to emphasize their ethnic communities.”26 He added, “such communities, which allowed for a feeling of congruence among their youth contexts, enabled them to embrace an ethnic community from a younger age and also feel less ambivalent about their identities as they grew older.”27 The stated aim of this study is to examine how second-generation Igbo young adults in the United States keep connected with the Igbo community in the United States and in Nigeria. The emergence of dialectical tension led to an underlying question: what is the emotional state of mind of these SGI? The study of Diane Wolf on children of Filipino immigrants in California indicates that the gap between family ideology and other practices can pose ethnic and transnational struggles.28 Even though many of the SGI participants are happy about Igboness, the troubling issue of tensions between them and their parents persist. They often appeared disappointed, and resented their parents’ handling of some key cultural issues, such as whether to pass along their native language.

Research design Qualitative in-depth interviews were conducted in the summer of 2013 in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area. The participants were recruited using flyers posted on an Igbo social media outlet that targeted young Igbo in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area. The recruitment was purposeful sampling and was supplemented with snowballing. The research questions were designed to extract the lived experiences of the SGI in the United States, including the cultural differences between the SGI and their parents, as well as any possible communicative tensions. The sample consisted of six males and six females, Igbo second-generation young adults born to Igbo parents. For the participants to be

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

32

U. Onuzulike

eligible for the study, they had to have been born in the USA or immigrated there before the age of six. All the participants were between the ages of eighteen and thirty-four. Participants are identified in this chapter by pseudonyms, which were chosen by the interviewer during the analysis. Qualitative interviewing helps to understand the phenomenological life experiences of individuals.29 Since the second-generation Igbo diaspora has received less attention, this study provides an excellent platform to understand the lived experiences of this arguably first phase of second-generation Igbo in the United States. Using a qualitative constant comparative analysis, the data were analyzed for constants, themes, and patterns in the context of ethnic and transnational identity constructions and negotiations of the SGI young adults. Constant comparative analysis is suitable for determining categories from qualitative data.30 Even though this chapter aims to understand how the SGIs maintain connection with the Igbo community in the USA and their ancestral homeland, the analysis gave special attention to the narratives describing their lived experiences and the communicative tension asserted by the participants.

Findings This section is concerned with how the SGI participants engage themselves with Igbo ethnic identity. The data analysis indicates that the SGI keep connected with the Igbo community in the United States and in Nigeria through several channels as demonstrated in the three emerging themes. They are (1) organizational dynamics: (i) pan-African groups, (ii) pan-Igbo-groups, (iii) intra-Igbo groups, (iv) young-Igbo groups, (v) indifference; (2) social media impact; and (3) ancestral homeland. Organizational dynamics Pan-African groups Two participants were vocal about these groups. One of them, Agbonma, indicated that she belongs to and participates in African and Black activities in America. She said that she belongs to the African Studies Association because it allows her “to get connected with different Africans.” She articulated how she does so: I’m part [a board member] of the Association of Black Psychologists, and there’s a girl on my board who had an obvious Igbo name. I was like, “Okay, obviously this girl is Igbo.” When she and I met, I was not going to act all normal. I was like, “You’re Igbo,” instead of just saying, “Hi.” I try to make those contacts that are important to me. Azubuike shared a similar sentiment by volunteering at African events in the Washington, DC area:

The young Igbo Diaspora

33

On a wider spread, I guess, for me, as of right now, I help out at some of the DC Office of African Affairs events. I often see a lot of my Igbo . . . [people]. That’s also another way of connecting with Igbo culture here in DC.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Pan-Igbo groups One of the participants, Nwagha, was very vocal and expressed his disappointment about the leadership of the Igbo in terms of Igbo organization. He feels that they lack focus and he articulated, “They have the World Igbo Congress, but the World Igbo Congress has spent most of its investments . . . in courts fighting amongst each other. I don’t think anyone really considers them to be a vanguard group.” He further expressed the following: I think it’s really just a political outfit for selfish gains. People are really invested, however, in their own village progressive unions and then secondly in the state associations, but apart from that, you don’t really have any strong pan-Igbo organizations. You don’t. You just don’t. And when you do have Igbo organizations that span across Igbos and not just village, I kind of feel that the agenda is not one that I agree with. A lot of them, I kind of distance myself away from them, because a lot of them I’ve interacted with, they only seem to be focused on either getting an Igbo president, the Igbo presidency, or on Biafra. There’s really nothing much else there. He felt disappointed that these pan-Igbo groups are not getting the younger ones involved: I feel the agenda is really just fanatical and not really, not serious. I see a lot of folks not being serious. Also, some of the ones in Nigeria, some of the ones in UK also continue in foolishness like that. Like I said, some of these organizations, again, not getting youth involved. Intra-Igbo groups These can also be referred to as intra-ethnic or Igbo sub-groups. Some of the SGI participants expressed interest in going to the Igbo village or town social activities and events in the United States. Nwagha noted, “[The] Igbo community in the United States . . . mostly survives or is mostly organized through the village groups.” Azubuike agreed with Nwagha, articulating the following: First, in the United States, I like to go to the different events as much as possible. As I said before, we often go to the national conventions for my city every year and that’s a great way and opportunity to reinforce that this is where you came from and these are your people. These are your relatives; this is who you are.

34

U. Onuzulike

Tobenna shared that he attends some Igbo organizational activities:

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Personally, like I mentioned before, there’s an organization I didn’t remember based here out of Washington DC, and that is the non-profit organization that unites Igbos, that is, those coming in and those that have been here in the diaspora, and that has been my one major ways of connecting with the Igbos here in United States of America. Nwagha argued that Igbo village and town meetings are likely to function better than a national or international Igbo organization. He said that these types of organizations are not interested in moving the peoples of the Igbo diaspora forward. Young-Igbo groups Almost all of the participants indicated that they participate in some Igbo social group or youth branch of intra-Igbo groups. Nwagha contended that he preferred associations that move Igbo forward including the Nwannedinnamba Youth Chapter in DC, Umu Igbo Unite, and Aka Ikenga in Baltimore. He said that he has participated in some of their activities and events. He indicated, “there’s [also] all the other ones, which I won’t name.” Chibuzo agreed by saying, “in the US, I attend Igbo organizations, Igbo events, and promote Igbo culture. In Nigeria, I tried to visit my family in the village.” As for Agbonma, she offered the following, “I do it, because I just love seeing Igbos. I love Igbos. I love being Igbo, so building those connections are important.” Indifference One participant, Nkwachkwu, feels indifference in the sense that, since the SGIs face several identities, it could be a challenge to pick out one over the other: Seriously, being born here, there are a lot of people who don’t really stay connected because they don’t necessarily feel like they have to. They feel like they have a choice. . . . I can choose Nigeria or America or kind of go on and gravitate towards America and say look at Nigeria, they have problems. America has problems, too, but America has more money or whatever. He maintained that even though he keeps connected with the Igbo through various channels, he still maintains friendships with non-Igbo people: I have a lot of Igbo friends, I know a lot of Igbo people and we communicate on Facebook, we talk on the phone, we go out to parties, we do different things like that but what I’m saying in effect is in the sense that I also know that there are times I don’t have to congregate with them, I can

The young Igbo Diaspora

35

congregate with someone else, like saying, you know what, I choose to congregate with my own kind because it is good for my own identity and my own sense of self.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Social media impact Social media are one of the channels the SGI young adults utilize to negotiate and construct their Igboness and transnational identities. All the participants use social media in various degrees to remain connected to their people. When they were asked how they keep connected with the Igbo in the United States and in Nigeria, Chioma reported: With Nigeria I would say Facebook. I text my uncles, I text my cousins, here in America.” She continued with, “I’m the event coordinator for the Howard University African Students Association, so that gives me a way to just always be in touch with my Igbo culture in here. Likewise, for Emeka, social networking sites are the main communication tool for articulating Igbo identity: Honestly, one of the biggest ways right now is Facebook! I can keep in contact with a lot of my family, my cousins that are back home and other places around the world, London and Paris and such, through that social media outlet. Honestly, I’m at a point right now I’m just turning 34 and looking towards getting married, where I really, really, really am understanding more of the importance of being connected to that culture. So I want to reconnect and foster that connection so that I can explain to, you know, my girlfriend hopefully, future wife and hopefully, future kids what Igbo culture is really all about. Not just the periphery stuff that I know, but to get really deep and with that knowledge to give them a better sense of self. Likewise, Ifunanya said that: in Nigeria, through social media, that’s how I stay connected with them and going back more. I am trying to make it a habit of visiting it more other than that while . . . using email or social media while am here just socializing going to different events that’s all in the US. Ijeoma also agreed that new and social media have made it possible for her to keep connected with her relatives back in Nigeria: I do so to try and be a part of any . . . not necessarily anything going, but most things that happen that are Nigerian-related. I definitely keep in contact with my cousins now, which I didn’t do before. Ever since I came back from

36

U. Onuzulike Nigeria [in 2012], that’s what I’ve been doing ever since. I speak to them on a weekly basis through any form of media, social media. That’s something I never used to do, so that’s how I keep in contact with many of them.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

As for Obiageli, she is an active user of social media and new media to keep connected with folks in Nigeria. She explains: It might take two parts; As far as Nigeria goes for me, I talk to my relatives frequently, like I Skype with my cousin . . . a lot. I’ll speak to my cousin and stuff like that, like I said, most of my immediate family are actually in Nigeria so there’s about three to four, actually one or two people that I communicate with regularly ’cause I need to know what is going on in their life and then the one community here outside of my family who I speak to on a regular basis like several times a week. She continued on to say that she uses social networking to keep in touch with Igbo friends in the United States, especially after they relocate to another place. Ancestral homeland Visiting the ancestral homeland is another channel the participants use to maintain and build connections with the Igbo people and the culture. Njideka alluded to the importance of such visits in the following way: In the United States I feel connected through the groups. Through this group that I just joined and going to various events where there are Igbo people present. That’s how I connect with them. Then in Nigeria, now that I’m older, I try to go Nigeria as frequently as I can to see family and I guess learn the way of Nigerian life or Igbo life. That’s one way how I connect, so I try to go back as often . . . when I go back, you meet friends, new family members, and I’m able to contact them when I’m here so we can talk and just share experiences. Obiageli and Ifunanya shared that visiting Nigeria helped them to keep connected to their relatives in Nigeria. When Ifunanya was asked how often she visits Nigeria, she offered, “I am trying to make it a habit. This would be the second year I’m going twice in a row, but I’m trying to make it a habit to go every year.” When she was asked how long she stays when she visits, she answered, “Last year [2012], I was there for a month. I hope to increase it this time, [and] gradually keep staying longer and longer, but at least for one to two months.” When she was asked if she tried to learn the language there, she replied, “That’s what I’m doing now. That’s the point. I keep going back so that I can learn the language, learn more about the culture while I’m actually there.”

The young Igbo Diaspora

37

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Discussion The results revealed that SGI young adults utilize several channels of connecting with their Igboness in the United States and in the ancestral homeland. The first channel involved organizations and social groups. These include pan-African groups, pan-Igbo, intra-Igbo, and the young generation groups. Pan-Igbo organizations are considered by one of the participants as a waste of time because he feels they are politically oriented and offer no meaningful resources for the Igbo. In contrast, the intra-Igbo groups are widely thriving. These associations are primarily comprised of people who are either from the same hometown or are married to individuals from the same hometown. The progressiveness of these associations is supported by Reynolds’ study of an Igbo hometown association.31 She found that the majority of the children of the studied members’ association “have strong connections with Nigeria and Igboland; all those whom . . . [she] know[s] have dated or even married Igbo speakers or other Nigerians who were brought up abroad.”32 Another progressive channel is provided by various young Igbo groups or associations that have been promoting an Igbo agenda. The SGI young adults often found these groups valuable as a source of learning and for sharing their Igbo identity. Social and new media are channels the SGI young adults use in connecting with their folks in the diaspora and in the ancestral homeland. They use these channels to construct and negotiate their Igboness and transnational identities. They live and enact their ancestral culture via social media, which have come to play an essential part in the determining and arranging of SGI young adults’ daily lives and social relationships. Some of the channels they used in keeping connected with the Igbo community in Nigeria include Facebook, Skype, emails, etc. Another aspect of keeping connected for the SGI young adults is visiting the ancestral homeland. Perhaps surprisingly, given the expense, all of the participants had travelled to Nigeria. One participant wanted to make a habit of visiting the ancestral home every year, while another endeavors to visit every other year in order to stay current and informed. Some participants indicated that such visits serve as a platform to learn the Igbo language. Research indicates that “the ethnic community can play [a significant role] in channeling frustrations with cultural conflicts away from rebellion and instead turning cultural tensions into pressures for achievement.”33 Co-ethnics through social networks/networking and other young Igbo organizations such as the Nwannedinamba Youth Branch, Umu Igbo Unite, and Umu Igbo Alliance help the SGI sustain their ethnic identity. These organizations serve as places of cultural reproduction and socialization. Many of the SGI interviewed in this study congregate with co-ethnics in local or national organizations in the United States to promote and share their Igbo identification.34 They use each of these Igbo organizations to reinforce their cultural connection and ethnic identification. They feel more affinity to their ancestral homeland through transnational media, and use these channels in forming hybrid identities.35

38

U. Onuzulike

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Concluding remarks Mirroring relational dialectics theory (RDT), the SGI young adults studied here communicatively construct and negotiate their Igboness, hybrid selves, and transnational identities. Co-ethnic young Igbo organizations, associations, and social groups played a primary role in how they performed their ethnic and transnational selves. By observing and listening to the participants carefully, I was able to see how they enact their Igboness and transnational identities. They never attempted to conceal their Igboness in my presence, perhaps because I am an SGI; rather, they enacted it by trying to change their accent to sound like firstgeneration Igbo Americans, and they sometimes inserted Igbo sound bites, such as phrases or proverbs. Igbo heritage manifests and evolves itself via film, music, literature, food, clothing, material culture, Igbo organizations/associations, and other social groups. In order not to lose these cultural markers, the Igbo in both Nigeria and the diaspora should “endeavor to pass on these cultural codes to the next generation, initiating them to appreciate their own cultural roots and values.”36 This task could be done through the use of cultural markers, including trips back home, language, food, and entertainment. Nevertheless, the parents’ involvement in their children’s development of an ethnic identification varies. The SGI young adults who were exposed to the culture through the Igbo social community tend to embrace Igboness more than those who did not have such opportunities. The SGI revealed that they are often exposed to the co-ethnic community through their parents’ social networks, including church and other Igbo social events. Igbo cultural values may have influenced their lives, but it is American culture that they are often most comfortable in. Given that these SGI are struggling to reconcile their ethnic identity in the diaspora, efforts should be made to alleviate tensions with their parents and their identities. The findings suggest that, even though some of the parents were indifferent over passing along cultural traditions to their children, almost all of the SGI participants actively participate in the co-ethnic functions and maintain transnational ties with their family in Nigeria.

Notes 1 John Arthur, African Diaspora Identities: Negotiating Culture in Transnational Migration (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2010), 6–12; Janet T. Awokoya, “Identity Constructions and Negotiations Among 1.5—and Second-Generation—Nigerians: The Impact of Family, School, and Peer Contexts,” Harvard Educational Review, 82, no. 2 (2012): 255–256. 2 Uchenna Onuzulike, “Identity Construction and Negotiation Among SecondGeneration Igbo Young Adults in the United States,” Igbo Studies Review, 1, no. 2 (2014): 125–126. 3 Amado Padilla, “Bicultural Social Development,” Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 28 (2006): 467–469. 4 Mary J. Collier, “Constituting Cultural Differences through Discourse,” International and Intercultural Communication Annual, 23, no. 3 (2000): 220.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The young Igbo Diaspora

39

5 Uchenna Onuzulike, Ethnic and Transnational Identities in the Diaspora: A Phenomenological Study of Second-Generation Igbo-American Young Adults. (ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database, 2014). (UMI No. 3639879): 10–12. 6 Diane L. Wolf, “Family Secrets: Transnational Struggles among Children of Filipino Immigrants,” Sociological Perspectives, 40, no. 3 (1997): 473. 7 Min Zhou, “Growing up American: The Challenge Confronting Immigrant Children and Children of Immigrants,” Annual Review of Sociology, 23 (1997): 64–65. 8 Milton Vickerman, “Second-Generation West Indian Transnationalism,” in Peggy Levitt and Mary C. Waters (eds.), The Changing Face of Home: The Transnational Lives of the Second Generation (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 2002), 341–366. 9 Flore Zephir, Trends in Ethnic Identification among Second-Generation Haitian Immigrants in New York City (Westport, CT: Bergin & Garvey, 2001): 30. 10 Cati Coe, “Transnational Parenting: Child Fostering in Ghanaian Immigrant Families,” in Randy Capps and Michael Fix (eds.), Young Children of Black Immigrants in America: Changing Flows, Changing Faces (Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2012), 265–267. 11 Obiefuna J. Onwughalu, Parents’ Involvement in Education: The Experience of an African Immigrant Community in Chicago (Bloomington, IN: iUniverse Publishing, 2011): 115–121. 12 Oluwakemi M. Balogun, “No Necessary Tradeoff: Context, Life Course, and Social Networks in the Identity Formation of Second-Generation Nigerians in the USA,” Ethnicities, 11, no. 4 (2011): 436–435. 13 Chinaka Agwu, Acculturation and Racial Identity Attitudes: An Investigation of First and Second Generation Ibos (Master’s Thesis). (ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database, 2009). (UMI No. 1469282): 3. 14 Mary J. Collier, “Intercultural Friendships as Interpersonal Alliances,” in Judith N. Martin, Thomas K. Nakayama, and Lisa A. Flores (eds.), Readings in Cultural Contexts (Mountain View, CA: Mayfield, 1998): 371. 15 Leslie A. Baxter, “Relationships as Dialogues,” Personal Relationships 11, no. 1 (2004): 1–3; Dawn O. Braithwaite and Leslie A. Baxter (eds.), Engaging Theories in Family Communication (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2006), 12. 16 Baxter, “Relationships as Dialogues,” 12. 17 Ola Uduku, “The Socio-Economic Basis of a Diaspora Community: Igwe Bu Ike,” Review of African Political Economy, 29, no. 92 (2002): 301–302. 18 Ibid., 307. 19 Rachel Reynolds, “Igbo Professional Migratory Orders, Hometown Associations and Ethnicity in the USA,” Global Networks 9, no. 2 (2009): 209–212. 20 Uduku, The Socio-Economic Basis of a Diaspora Community, 310. 21 Ibid. 22 Ibid. 23 Kelly H. Chong, “What it Means to be Christian: The Role of Religion in the Construction of Ethnic Identity and Boundary among Second-Generation Korean Americans,” Sociology of Religion 59, no. 3 (1998): 259–286. 24 Balogun, “No Necessary Tradeoff,” 444. 25 Ibid. 26 Ibid., 445. 27 Ibid. 28 Wolf, “Family Secrets,” 257. 29 Clark Moustakas, Phenomenological Research Methods (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1994), 61. 30 Barney Glaser and Anselm Strauss, The Discovery of Grounded Theory: Strategies for Qualitative Research (Chicago, IL: Aldine Publishing Company, 1967): 23–30. 31 Reynolds, “Igbo Professional Migratory Orders,” 213.

40

U. Onuzulike

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

32 Ibid., 213. 33 Zhou, “Growing up American,” 86. 34 David Oh, “Mediating the Boundaries: Second-Generation Korean American Adolescents’ Use of Transnational Korean Media as Markers of Social Boundaries,” The International Communication Gazette, 74, no. 3 (2012): 258–276. 35 Ibid., 262. 36 Ajaya K. Sahoo and Dave Sangha, “Diaspora and Cultural Heritage: The Case of Indians in Canada,” Asian Ethnicity, 11, no. 1 (2010): 87.

3

African immigrants and their churches

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Adebayo Oyebade

We want to plant churches like Starbucks.1 James Fadel, Chair, Board of Coordinators, the Redeemed Christian Church of God, North America (RCCGNA) We’re going to pray for our nation, the United States of America. This is our Jerusalem!2 Daniel Ajayi-Adeniran, Provincial Pastor, RCCGNA

Introduction The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), a Pentecostal ministry established in Nigeria in 1952, is one of the fastest growing churches in the world.3 The church has a core mission of having a member in “every family of all the nations” of the world, as well as parishes “within five minutes walking distance in every city and town of developing countries” and “within five minutes driving distance in every city and town of developed countries.”4 The church has pursued this extraordinary goal through fervent evangelism and extensive church planting. As of 2013, the ministry boasted over 2,000 parishes in its home country, Nigeria, and hundreds more in over 150 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, Middle East, and the Americas.5 In the United States, driven by the relentless pursuit of its expansionist vision, the RCCG is easily the fastest growing African immigrant church. By mid-2014, its parishes, which could be found in practically every state of the union, numbered 722.6 The phenomenal growth of the RCCG in the United States and the existence of hundreds of other African-initiated churches, some with large congregations, signify the growing demographic importance of African-born immigrants in contemporary America. In the last thirty years, this community has seen a progressive, but dramatic, population increase. African immigrants, as they face the challenges of integration, have created their own social, cultural, and religious institutions to meet their needs. Of the many civic institutions established by African immigrants, the church appears to be the most vibrant; it is significant for the level at which it is patronized by the community. Recent immigrants from Nigeria, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Uganda, and other

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

42

A. Oyebade

African countries have established indigenous churches to serve their respective communities. More people in the African-born community are drawn to these churches than to any other social and cultural institutions they have established. Parishioners, whether regular members or occasional attendees, seek benefits that transcend the fulfillment of spiritual needs; the churches also serve as an important avenue to foster social and cultural identity. In short, the African immigrant church has served as a multi-purpose institution for the immigrants. In the United States, the aspiration of the RCCG to “plant churches like Starbucks” in imitation of the proliferation of the popular specialty coffeehouse which, in 2014, boasted “more than 21,000 stores in 65 countries,”7 underscores the expanding power of African Pentecostalism in the United States. In this chapter, the character of the African immigrant church in the United States will be examined, as well as how it intersects with the community it principally serves. Although, a few works have studied the African immigrant church in America, they have preponderantly focused on the institution as an urban, megacity phenomenon.8 This is understandable, because, initially, these churches were predominantly found in major metropolitan areas with large African-born populations such as New York, Washington, Atlanta, Los Angeles, MinneapolisSt. Paul, Houston, Dallas, and Chicago.9 However, a more recent trend is the growing appearance of the churches in mid-size and even smaller American cities, as African immigrants gravitate to these places. In light of this, Nashville, a mid-size city in the State of Tennessee, with a sizeable African-born population and a growing presence of African-initiated Christianity, provides the frame of reference for the study of the African immigrant church in America. While African-born people live in most parts of Nashville, many live in its suburbs such as Antioch, Franklin, Brentwood, Bellevue, Goodlettsville, Gallatin, Hermitage, Mount Juliet, Smyrna, Murfreesboro, and others. Apart from in the city, a few of the immigrant churches are located in some of these suburbs. Thus, for the purpose of this study, Nashville is defined as the city and its suburbs.

A new Ellis Island: Nashville as an immigration hotbed Nashville has often been referred to as a “new Ellis Island” as a result of its fast growing reputation as an important emerging hub for new immigrants seeking a home in the United States. Outside of the traditional immigration catchment areas such as California, Texas, Illinois, and New York, the state of Tennessee has, over several decades, become the largest recipient of new immigrants into the country. According to an Immigration Policy Center report, in 2013, immigrants made up about 4.8 percent of the state’s population.10 Immigration to Tennessee, which had progressively increased since the 1980s, saw an upsurge after the 1990s (see Figure 3.1). By the beginning of the twentieth century, the state had one of the fastest-growing foreign-born populations in the United States. Although Tennessee has a number of major cities such as Memphis, Chattanooga, and Knoxville, most of the immigrants to the state elected to make Nashville their home. Between 2006 and 2010, Davidson County, where Nashville

African immigrants and their churches 43 450

Foreign-born population (’000s)

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

400 350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0

1980

1990

2000 Year

2010

2013

Figure 3.1 Foreign-born population in Tennessee State (source: US Census Bureau (adapted from Tennessee Immigration Facts: Federation for American Immigration Reform).

is located, had 11.5 percent foreign-born population, the highest in the state.11 Indeed, since 2000, Nashville’s foreign-born population has accounted for more than half of the city’s growth. Nashville’s growing importance as a hotbed for foreign-born people was well captured by one of the city’s major newspapers, The Tennessean, when it stated: Nashville is part of a new American frontier sometimes called the “global interior” that runs from Minnesota to Texas where immigrants and refugees have moved in unprecedented numbers since 1990. Of the nation’s one hundred largest metropolitan areas, Nashville ranks first in the number of new immigrants arriving from 1991 to 1998 relative to the number of foreign-born counted there in 1990.12 As suggested by census data, between 1990 and 2000, foreign immigration to Nashville increased by 203 percent, said to be almost four times that of the national average which was 57 percent.13 President Barak Obama’s choice of, and consequent visit to, Nashville on December 9, 2014, to defend his controversial executive order-mandated immigration reform was intended to underscore the city’s status as a welcoming hub for new immigrants.14 The immigrant population in Tennessee is diverse, consisting of Kurds, Burmese, Latinos, Asians, Arabs, and Africans. Like other immigrants, they are drawn to Nashville largely by the ample socio-economic benefits it offers to newcomers. The capital of the State of Tennessee, Nashville, is a major hub in

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

44

A. Oyebade

the American South—it is the seventh fastest-growing American city and the fifth largest in the southeastern part of the United States. Strategically located, it has close proximity to major southern cities such as Atlanta, Louisville, St. Louis, and Jackson. Nashville offers a plethora of opportunities for immigrants to acquire the proverbial American dream. First, a striving economy ensures availability of jobs in practically every sector, from blue-collar construction work to highly specialized professions. Nashville is home to a number of important industries that have provided employment for immigrants. Some examples include Nissan and Saturn, the notable auto companies, and Dell, a computer enterprise. Apart from such companies, a large number of immigrants are employed in the city’s healthcare sector, one of the fastest growing in the nation. As a result of steady annual job growth over a five-year period, Forbes magazine listed Nashville as the tenth best city for business in 2014.15 Related to a buoyant economy, Nashville’s comparative lower cost of living has been an important incentive to immigrants. According to 2012 data, the city’s overall cost-of-living index was 88.9 percent.16 Second, and especially for education-conscious African immigrants, Nashville, with its many tertiary institutions, provides invaluable opportunity for college education. The membership of many of the African immigrant churches includes many college students who attend the city’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), such as Tennessee State University, Fisk University, and Meharry Medical College. Many others study at other institutions such as Vanderbilt University, Belmont College, Nashville State Community College, and Middle Tennessee State University. In 2014, about 35 percent of the membership of RCCG Agape House, Nashville, was made up of college students, some of whom enjoyed scholarship grants offered by the church. The church’s establishment of a campus fellowship at Tennessee State University in the fall of 2008 underlines the importance of student membership. Third, in the era of heightening anti-immigration sentiment and activism across the United States, Tennessee has managed to promote ethnic diversity through immigrant-friendly policies. For instance, the state was one of the first in the country to issue a driver’s license to all immigrants, irrespective of immigration status. Also, a bill (SB 2115/H B 1929 (Gardenhire/M. White)) making high school graduates who are children of undocumented immigrants eligible for in-state tuition was passed in 2014.17 Earlier, in 2009, a proposal that could have made English the only language of official business in the state was defeated by voters.18 This was an action that spoke to the citizenry’s sensitivity to the feelings of the immigrant community and also the desire to promote ethnic diversity. The demography of African immigration African immigrants in Nashville come from all regions of the continent (see Table 3.2). Immigrants from Nigeria, South Sudan, Ghana, and Somalia are the

African immigrants and their churches 45

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Table 3.1 African foreign-born population in Tennessee by region Region

Population

% of foreign-born

Eastern Africa Northern Africa Western Africa Middle and Southern Africa Other Africa

7,488 7,444 5,991 1,989 613

2.6 2.6 2.1 0.7 0.2

Source: Migration Policy Institute, Tennessee Demographics and Social.19

Table 3.2 African foreign-born population in Tennessee Year

1990

2000

2010

2012

Population % of foreign-born

2,690 4.7

8,696 5.5

27,404 9.5

23,525 8.1

Source: Adapted from (a) US Census Bureau (adapted from Tennessee Immigration Facts: Federation for American Immigration Reform, and (b) Migration Policy Institute, Tennessee Demographics and Social.20

most prominent of the city’s new African Diaspora population. Although African immigrants constitute a rather small percentage of the total foreign-born population, their number has steadily increased (see Table 3.3). Thus, Nashville has rapidly emerged as home to a dynamic African-born community.

Reverse evangelism and the expansion of African religious space The African religious presence in the United States is broadly composed of three types as follows: • • •

African indigenous religions African expression of Islam African initiated Christianity.

These religious traditions have been well treated elsewhere;21 suffice it to make a number of observations here. First, only a very small number of African immigrants practice forms of traditional African religion, the most common being the worship of a pantheon of Yorùbá deities, the Orìsás. The re-creation of traditional African religions in the United States was essentially the work of African Americans seeking some type of African identity as means of empowerment. Ironically, the expanding African immigrant religious space has never included traditional African religions. Except for a few practicing diviners, African immigrants have not embraced African traditional religions, and the African

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

46

A. Oyebade

religious tradition in the United States has remained practically the domain of African Americans. In Nashville, a few Orìsá temples exist, such as Egbe Mimo Anago Ile Oshun;22 but they are exclusively patronized by African Americans. Second, mounting Islamophobia in the United States notwithstanding, African-born Muslims, like other immigrant Muslims, have continued to practice their religion. In urban centers all over the nation, African-born Muslims, from nations such as Egypt, Somalia, Eritrea, Kenya, Guinea, and Senegal, irrespective of their adherence to different orthodox Islamic sects, have established mosques and other Islamic religious centers to worship and propagate their faith.23 In Nashville, Al-Farooq Mosque, a center established in 1999 by Somali immigrants to serve the Muslim African-born community, is an example. Of the African Diasporan religious traditions, African Christianity has made the most significant impact on the immigrant community, and is increasingly becoming important in the general American religious society. Jacob Olupona, Harvard professor of African religions, once observed that “anyone who writes about Christianity in America in the 21st century will have to write about African churches.”24 Indeed, in present times, African Pentecostal influence on the United States, and, indeed, the Global North is so profound that it is easy to forget that, less than two centuries ago, Euro-American missionary enterprises played a pivotal role in Christianizing large parts of Africa. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Christian missionaries from the United States were instrumental in the propagation of the gospel in countries like Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria. By the end of the twentieth century, however, a reverse trend had become clearly visible; African missionaries were increasingly coming to the United States and establishing churches. Of course, Christianity experienced an explosive boom in Africa before the beginning of the transplantation of its Africanized brand to the Global North. Since at least the mid-twentieth century, evangelical Christian revivalism began to gain solid ground in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa. The burst of the Pentecostal movement is particularly visible in countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and Uganda. In Nigeria, for example, Pentecostalism was evident from the country’s attainment of independence in 1960. In the 1980s, the floodgate of Pentecostal ministries opened, and, by 1985, the movement had become a powerful force organized under the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria. Pentecostalism has continued to flourish greatly; presently there are scores of denominations and hundreds of churches ranging from small ones meeting in make-shift facilities to fashionable, mega ones housed in imposing structures.25 Also, thousands of people consider themselves Pentecostals, vividly demonstrated in the RCCG Holy Ghost service, a monthly gathering of believers at the church’s Redemption Camp on the outskirt of Lagos, reputed to bring together at each meeting at least a million people. Pentecostalism in Nigeria, as in other African countries where the movement is strong, is not just a religious phenomenon; it has become a vital element of the make up of society.26 The most active sector of the African immigrant church in the United States is its Pentecostal strand. Pentecostalism, within the Christian context, emphasizes

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

African immigrants and their churches 47 certain beliefs deemed fundamental to the Christian faith. These include speaking in tongues as a manifestation of the baptism of the Holy Spirit; the leading of the Spirit; visions, signs and wonders; and miracles such as divine healing. Although Pentecostalism originated in the United States in the 1900s, many African Pentecostal leaders hold the belief that the American church had largely lost the evangelical passion to reach out to “lost souls,” and that the American nation itself had essentially abandoned the Christian tenets upon which it was established by its founding fathers. African Pentecostals thus view themselves as called to service, to labor for the extension of the frontier of God’s kingdom in America, the revival of the American church and America’s restoration to a God-fearing state. This sentiment, a sort of manifest destiny, had been expressed by a number of prominent African evangelicals in the United States. For example, RCCGNA provincial pastor Ajayi-Adeniran reportedly stated the following: Right now there is moral decadence. Things are not the way they used to be. All kinds of things: pollution and watering down of the Gospel—the gospel of convenience, the gospel of tolerance. You want to please people rather than pleasing God. That is one of the purposes, why we are here, to bring sanity to the church.27 In consequence, evangelical impulse, central to Pentecostal creed, became a prime motivation for the late twentieth-century “reverse evangelism,” in which African evangelicals became propagators of the gospel in the West in fulfillment of Christ’s “Great Commission,” the injunction to believers to take the faith to all nations.28 A study of global trends in international missionary activities in 2010 showed that Nigeria ranked ninth in the top twenty countries in the Global South that sent missionaries to other lands, especially in the Global North.29 Fervent spirit of evangelism notwithstanding, it should not be assumed that evangelical impulse among African Pentecostals was enough motivation for immigration. Indeed, proselytizing fervor was not a compelling reason for evangelistic-minded Africans to leave career, families, and friends at home and relocate to the United States. Many African immigrants were compelled to become sojourners in America because of unfavorable home conditions such as economic hardships, political instability, and devastating conflicts. However, many passionate African Pentecostal missionaries who found themselves abroad could not resist the zeal for evangelistic church planting.

The character of the African immigrant church African immigrant churches are those initiated or established by African-born immigrants, primarily to serve the interests of the immigrant community. They are to be distinguished from “Black” churches, such as the African Methodist Episcopal, which have historically catered to African American congregations. Although some of the African immigrant churches may have some type of relationship or partnership with American ministries, white or black, they remain

48

A. Oyebade

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

authentically African, not just in the constitution of their congregations, but also in their unique worship style, characterized by loud singing, clapping of hands, and dancing. This form of worship can easily be identified with RCCG churches. RCCG Agape House, Nashville, defined its mode of worship as: • • • • • • •

sitting, standing, singing and dancing in praise and worship; kneeling, lying down, and prostrating in worship; using tambourine, handkerchief, aprons, etc., in praises and worship; audible prayers and praises; singing and praying in other tongues; lifting up holy hands and laying on of hands; and rendering choruses, songs and hymns accompanied by instruments.30

Most of the African immigrant churches in Nashville seem to target, almost exclusively, the African-born population. This can be seen, for example, in the manner in which they promote themselves. They advertise their programs solely in publications targeting the immigrant community such as The New American Times, described as an “African Diaspora Community Newspaper serving the ever growing population of African immigrants in the United States.”31 Their brochures, flyers of events, and other literature pertaining to their activities are distributed through African immigrant-owned stores frequented by immigrants. An example of such a store is the popular “Gateway 2 Africa,” a grocery market which prides itself on “offering products from all over the Continent,” and also a “one stop shop to experience Africa in the heart of Nashville.”32 However, some of the churches, especially the Pentecostal ones, have not shied away from attempting to reach the wider community. Indeed, some of them define themselves as “international” or “multicultural,” meaning that they do not wish to restrict their membership solely to African immigrants. Efforts to transcend an African label and achieve diversified congregations have been pursued through evangelism programs. For example, RCCG Agape House, Nashville, has utilized innovative outreach programs, such as a tax return preparation service and computer literacy classes, to attract non-Africans and reach the larger American community. However, efforts by the churches at reaching the larger community beyond African immigrants have not recorded significant gains. Faced with the huge challenge of attracting non-Africans, membership of the churches has remained overwhelmingly African. Types of churches There are broadly two types of African immigrant church in terms of their origins or establishment. First, there are those that originated as affiliate branches of transnational, mega-ministries based in Africa. While the immigrant churches in this category may have some measure of autonomy, especially in matters pertaining to the day-to-day running of their affairs, they are generally answerable to the parent ministry on a wide range of issues. For example, and most importantly,

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

African immigrants and their churches 49 they are required to adhere strictly to the beliefs and visions of the parent ministry. Thus, each of the over 700 parishes of the RCCG in the United States is a component unit of the ministry’s transnational network with headquarters in Ebute-Metta, Lagos State, Nigeria. Nashville’s two RCCG parishes consequently operate under this structure. Similarly, the Church of Pentecost in Nashville operates as a branch of a worldwide ministry based in Accra, Ghana. The second broad type of the African immigrant church is made up of those that were established independently of any existing African-based ministry, and are thus not part of any transnational network. They are often described as “a one man church” in that, rather than being subject to the authority of a particular existing ministry, they are solely managed by those who established them. Most of the African immigrant churches in Nashville are of this type. As independently established entities, they lack a prior recognizable name on which they could stand to attract members. Thus, these types of churches often find it more difficult to expand than those founded and operating as appendages of already well-known ministries in Africa that have transnational capability and the necessary human and financial resources available to deploy. The success of the RCCG, especially in its phenomenal numerical growth and the ability to plant multiple parishes, draws heavily from the clout the ministry had established in Nigeria, and its worldwide popularity. With parishes numbering more than 2,000 in Nigeria, new immigrants to the United States were already familiar with the church. Indeed, as revealed by interviews with members of RCCG Agape House, Nashville, most had been members or occasional attendees of the RCCG in Nigeria before relocating to the United States. The churches in Nashville The twenty-first century opened the floodgate of African immigrant churches in Nashville. As noted earlier, in the United States in general, a dramatic increase in the African-born population was manifesting from the 1990s onward. This trend was also visible in the State of Tennessee, where, by 2012, African immigrants constituted 8.3 percent of the state’s foreign-born population.33 Nashville, in particular, began to welcome steady streams of African immigrants that, inevitably, led to the expansion of the African religious space in the city. From the late 1990s, a new set of churches began to spring up at a rapid pace to minister to the increasing African immigrant population. By the end of 2015, African immigrant churches numbered nearly forty, identified with a number of African countries by the constitution of their congregations and the nationality of their founders (see the list below). This dimension of the African immigrant church shows that there is really no monolithic “African” Church in the African Diaspora. Churches may be similar in doctrinal classification, in that they could fall into categories such as Pentecostal/Charismatic, Evangelistic, and Orthodox; they are also distinctively identifiable with immigrants from particular African nations. Thus, there are churches identified with Nigerians, Ghanaians, Ethiopians, South Sudanese, and other nationalities (see the list of churches). Even

50

A. Oyebade

among Nigerian churches, some have been identified with sub-ethnolinguistic groups such as the Yorùbá and the Igbo.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

List of churches identified with Nigerians • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Chapel of Peace International Christ Apostolic Church Christ Apostolic Church of God Mission (Christ Testimonial Miracle Center) Christ Apostolic Church, World Soul Evangelistic Ministries Christ Miracle Chapel Christ Only Church Christian Union Fellowship International Crossview Evangelical Church Deeper Life Ministry Grace Evangelistic Ministry His Holy Hills Church Holy Trinity Anglican Church Life of Faith Ministries Life Long Anointing Church Mountain of Fire and Miracle Ministries New Beautiful Gate Church and Ministries The Redeemed Christian Church of God, Agape House The Redeemed Christian Church of God, Jesus House Spring of Life Outreach Church Vineyard Pentecostal Church.

List of churches identified with Ghanaians • • • • • • • • • •

The Church of Pentecost International Gospel Ministry Joywood Bridge of Hope Church Light House Chapel International Church Power House Conquerors Chapel Presbyterian Church of Ghana The Redeemed Outreach International Church Resurrected Life Church Royal City Chapel International Word of Life Christian Center International.

List of churches identified with Ethiopians • • • •

Debre Berhan Holy Trinity Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church Debre Keranlo Medhanialem Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church Grace Evangelical Church of Nashville Hamere Nohe Kidane Mihret Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church.

African immigrants and their churches 51 List of churches identified with other Africans

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

• • • • •

Amazing Grace Sudanese Lutheran Church, LCMS (South Sudan) Fountain Ramah International Church (DRC) River of Life Church (South Sudan) United Methodist Church (Liberia) Sudanese American Nuer Presbyterian Church (South Sudan).

The African presence in Nashville’s religious community began to take shape in the late 1980s. This can be traced to the initiative of a number of African-born immigrants who established churches in the city, although not necessarily targeting the African immigrant community. One of the earliest African immigrants to plant and head a church in Nashville was Dr. George O. Adebanjo, a trained engineer who became a minister. Originally from Lagos, Nigeria, in 1986 Adebanjo founded the Living Word International Church, a multicultural ministry that was not specifically oriented toward African immigrants. While the church has retained its multicultural character with membership predominantly made up of African Americans, it undoubtedly opened up the possibility of establishing churches that would have the immigrant African community as their primary constituency.34 It is worthy of note that Adebanjo was the first African to be consecrated a bishop in the Church of God in Christ in the state of Tennessee. Beautiful Gate Church (now known as New Beautiful Gate Church and Ministries) followed, founded a year after Living Word International Church. It was established by a Nigerian-born couple Gideon and Esther Olaleye, both Baptist ministers and graduates of the American Baptist College in Nashville. The church started as the African Christian Fellowship, with the original purpose of reaching international students in Nashville, specifically African immigrants. With increased membership, the fellowship soon transformed itself into a fullfledged church under the continued leadership of Dr. Olaleye.35 At its inception, the church received institutional support from a number of Baptist churches in Nashville and recognition by the Nashville Baptist Association as a part of its ecumenical mission. A Ghanaian-born minister Alexander Arthur founded the Word of Life Christian Center International in August 1989. This church provides, perhaps, the only example of a Nashville African immigrant church with some form of connection with an American mega ministry. World of Life Christian Center is associated with the 30,000 member-strong World Changers Church International, the ministry of the popular African American gospel preacher Creflo Dollar, located at College Park, GA. World of Life Christian Center is also listed as a part of Creflo Dollar Ministerial Association, an initiative of the mega ministry.36 Over half of the African immigrant churches in Nashville can be identified with Nigerians. This is a reflection of the percentage of Nigerian immigrants in the total African immigration to the United States. A significant number of Ghanaian and Ethiopian immigrants also reside in Nashville. The churches established by Ghanaians make up the second largest number of African immigrant

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

52

A. Oyebade

churches, followed by those identified with Ethiopians. The predominantly Christian South Sudanese, who are quite prominent in number in Nashville, have their own churches as well. Many of them had arrived in Nashville as refugees fleeing the devastating conflicts in their homeland. Indeed, Nashville was one of the cities in the United States that was willing to accommodate these so-called “Lost Boys of Sudan.” There are also churches established by the Liberian and Congolese communities. African immigrant churches in Nashville are typically single-parish type, with the exception of the RCCG. In Tennessee State, in general, there were four RCCG parishes as of 2014, namely: • • • •

Agape House, Nashville House on the Rock, Memphis Jesus House, La Vergne Agape House, Clarksville.

Agape House, Nashville, inaugurated on May 30, 1999, was the first of the four parishes in Tennessee. It began as a house fellowship and soon became a fullfledged church as membership increased. In fewer than ten years, the church, in pursuit of RCCG’s mission of aggressive church planting, had given birth to another parish, RCCG, Agape House, Louisville, Kentucky, established in 2006. As at the end of 2014, two more parishes had been established out of Agape House, Nashville, namely Jesus House, La Vergne (2007) and Agape House, Clarksville (2009). While the birth of the new RCCG parishes is as a result of the mission’s policy of creating multiple parishes rather than a few mega ones, such could not be said of other ministries. Internal disagreement within some of the churches resulted in the establishment of new ones by aggrieved, breakaway factions; this partly explains the proliferation of African immigrant churches in the city. Redistribution of members as a result of the above scenario has stunted the growth of some of the churches.

Prospering in the land: roles of immigrant churches Many African immigrants have come to accept the United States as their permanent abode. It is customary for Christian Nigerian immigrants to refer to the United States as “our Jerusalem,” and thus they have a high expectation of prospering in their newly adopted country. They take to heart the Psalmist’s wish: “may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life,”37 and the church is often looked upon as having a role to play in the realization of this dream. Indeed, the church has been a major driving force for African immigrants as they search for a successful life in a foreign land. Although many African-born Pentecostals believe in a God-given mandate to reach out spiritually to their

African immigrants and their churches 53 host nation, African immigrant churches still hold their communities as their immediate and primary responsibility. Thus, they offer a variety of services to the community.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Spiritual nourishment As a religious institution, the African immigrant church provides primarily spiritual nourishment to parishioners in a variety of ways, including Sunday worship services, bible study meetings, crusades, prayer meetings, and night vigils. It is also customary for the churches to organize occasional special religious programs and spiritual retreats on diverse areas, such as healing and deliverance (supposedly from evil forces). Table 3.3 shows some examples of special programs offered in 2014 by some of the churches. Apart from regular and special services, standard to most of the churches, especially the bigger ones, are departments (often called “ministries”) through which the spiritual needs of different age groups are met. Typical ministries are for nursery, children, youth, singles, women, men, and elders. Fostering communal identity Africans, whether living at home or abroad, deeply cherish a sense of community. In Nashville, African immigrant churches have contributed in large measure to the forging of communal identity among the African-born population. For these immigrants, the church has come to represent, not just a place of worship, but also a rendezvous where they could meet fellow countrymen, speak traditional languages, engage in mundane talk, hold serious discourses about social and political developments at home, and share issues of mutual interest. While most of the churches in Nashville conduct services in English, some also employ local African languages, at least in worship songs. A few, including Table 3.3 African immigrant churches: special programs in 2014* Church

Special program

Theme/focus

RCCG, Agape House, Nashville Royal City Chapel International Grace Evangelistic Ministries Resurrected Life Church International Gospel Ministry

A Night with the Holy Spirit Breakthrough Summit

Empowerment and Jan. 19 Holy Spirit anointing Victorious living April 23–27

Lord, Teach us to Pray

Summer Fellowship

June 27–29

Miracle and Healing Crusade Musical Extravaganza and Testimonial Service

Faith healing

Sept. 11–14

Praise and testimony

Sept. 19

Note * This is a sample list; it is by no means exhaustive.

Date

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

54

A. Oyebade

Ethiopian orthodox churches such as Debre Keranio Medhanialem, use wholly local languages such as Amharic and Geez in Holy Liturgy. An important cultural character of the African immigrant church is that it is often deeply involved in the lives of members; this trait has put it in a pivotal position to promote communal identity. Important events in the lives of parishioners such as birthday celebrations, housewarmings, weddings, and naming ceremonies of newly born children are in some way tied to the church. Such events often call for the presence of church members in the celebrant’s home without any formal invitation. This manner of church involvement in a member’s life is welcomed and not considered intrusive. Social appeal Many of the African immigrant churches in Nashville have one type of social program or another directed at educating and assisting their members as they aspire to attain the “American Dream.” Agape House, Nashville, provides a case study of a church that aims to provide social services for immigrants. The church has occasional and regular educational programs such as seminars and workshops to help educate its members and others on a range of activities including childcare, job hunting, healthcare and wellness, finance, real estate, immigration issues, and legal matters. (See Figure 3.2 for a sample of such a program). Agape House, Nashville, also has a series of empowerment training sessions on pertinent issues such as leadership building in the religious and secular environments. A particular program that has drawn audiences, even beyond the church’s congregation, is its bi-monthly marriage discussion forums tagged “Let’s Get Married” and “Let’s Stay Married.” Both programs are tailored to

Figure 3.2 RCCG Agape House workshop series.

African immigrants and their churches 55

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

address pertinent issues about marriage, for both unmarried, single people and married couples. Since the program began in 2012 at the initiative of the church’s senior pastor Ben Adewuyi, it has become quite popular, especially among young adults in Nashville.38 Apart from these forums, in order to address the rising rate of divorce in the community, the church also holds occasional marriage seminars to provide counselling to interested parties. Marriage conferences have been organized by other churches as well. Economic benefit African immigrant churches in Nashville have also provided economic benefits for their members. For example, in the last few years, Agape House, Nashville, had offered financial assistance to needy members in the form of rent-free temporary accommodation for new arrivals to the city. Small scholarship grants have also been offered to qualified enrolled college students. Moreover, the growth in membership of African immigrant churches has facilitated the expansion of the market for fledgling African-owned businesses. In the last decade and a half, African immigrant entrepreneurship has grown tremendously as small-scale businesses such as retail stores, medical clinics, law firms, restaurants, day-care centers, and others have been established. African business owners, whether or not they are parishioners, look up to the churches’ members to patronize and support their businesses. In some churches, businesses owned by members are advertised in the Sunday service bulletin, or other church publications. Thus, the church had been instrumental in integrating Africanowned businesses into Nashville’s growing economy.

Conclusion The globalization of the African religious tradition that had been in steady motion, at least, for the last quarter of a century, is very evident in an urban America that has seen increased African immigration. Within this framework, this chapter has attempted to interrogate the changing dynamics of African Christianity in the United States with particular reference to the proliferation of African-initiated churches. The growing significance of African immigrant churches is not just a phenomenon limited to sprawling American metropolises such as New York, Chicago, Houston and others; mid-size American cities have begun to experience this phenomenon as well. Thus, the chapter takes the city of Nashville and its suburbs as a unit of analysis in the examination of African immigrant churches in the United States. Like immigrants elsewhere, Nashville’s African-born immigrants desire to create a home as close to their motherland as possible. This discourse posits that the major institutional establishment that these immigrants have deployed to achieve this end is the church. African immigrant churches have certainly made significant impacts on the community in a variety of ways. However, the professed goal expressed by many zealot African missionaries to influence mainstream American Christianity is yet to be realized.

56

A. Oyebade

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Notes 1 Jason Margolis, “The Redeemed Church of God preaches the gospel in US,” BBC News Magazine, February 12, 2014. Accessed July 18, 2014. www.bbc.com/news/ magazine-25988151. 2 Cited in “Mission from Africa,” AnotherThink, April 17, 2009. Accessed January 1, 2015. [www.anotherthink.com/contents/discovering_god/20090417_mission_from_ africa.html]. 3 The RCCG has been widely studied. Works on the ministry include the following: Asonzeh F. K. Ukah, A New Paradigm of Pentecostal Power: A Study of the Redeemed Christian Church of God in Nigeria (Trenton: Africa World Press, 2008); Olanike Olaleru, J. O. Akindayomi: The Seed in the Ground: The Story of the Founding of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (Lagos, Nigeria: Father of Lights for Faith of Our Fathers Foundation, 2007); Olufunke Adeboye, “ ‘Arrowhead’ of Nigerian Pentecostalism: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, 1952–2005,” Pneuma: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, 29 (2007): 24–58; Olufunke Adeboye, “Transnational Pentecostalism in Africa: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, Nigeria,” in Laurent Fourchard, Andre Mary, and Rene Otayek (eds.), Enterprises Religieuses Transnationales en Afrique de l’Quest (Ibadan, Nigeria: IFRA, 2005), 439–466; Afe Adogame, “Contesting the Ambivalence of Modernity in a Global Context: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, North America,” Studies in World Christianity, 10 (2004): 25–48; Stephen Hunt, “ ‘A Church for All Nations’: The Redeemed Christian Church of God,” Pneuma: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, 24 (2002): 185–204; and Moses A Adekola, “The Redeemed Christian Church of God: A Study of an Indigenous Pentecostal Church in Nigeria,” PhD Thesis, 1989, Dept. of Religious Studies, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. 4 See “Our Mission,” RCCGNA Website. Accessed July 28, 2014. www.rccgna.org/ TheChurch/Mission.aspx. 5 See “Our History,” RCCGNA Website. Accessed August 11, 2014. https://trccg.org/ rccg/about-us-2/history/. 6 Figure provided by Pastor James Fadele in his General Assembly Report to the 18th Annual RCCGNA Convention, June 19, 2014. 7 See, “our Heritage,” Accessed July 28, 2014. www.starbucks.com/about-us/ourheritage. 8 See the series of essays on this subject in both Jacob K. Olupona and Regina Gemignani (eds.), African Immigrant Religions in America (New York: New York University Press, 2007); and Frieder Ludwig and J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu, (eds.), African Christian Presence in the West: New Immigrant Congregations and Transnational Networks in North America and Europe (Trenton: Africa World Press, 2011). 9 Specific population figures for these metropolitan centers are provided in Christine P. Gambino, Edward N. Trevelyan, and John Thomas Fitzwater, “The Foreign-Born Population From Africa: 2008–2012,” American Community Survey Briefs Oct. (2014): 5. Accessed December 15, 2014. www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/ library/publications/2014/acs/acsbr12–16.pdf. 10 Immigration Policy Center, “New Americans in Tennessee: The Political and Economic Power of Immigrants, Latinos, and Asians in the Volunteer State,” July (2013). Accessed December 30, 2014. www.immigrationpolicy.org/sites/default/files/docs/ new_Americans_in_tennessee_2013_3.pdf. 11 US Census Bureau, “American Community Survey, 5-Year Estimates.” Quoted in “Tennessee Foreign-Born Population Percentage by County.” Accessed December 30, 2014. www.indexmundi.com/facts/united-states/quick-facts/tennessee/foreign-bornpopulation-percent#table.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

African immigrants and their churches 57 12 Anne Farris, “New Immigrants in New Places,” Carnegie Reporter, 3 (2005): 3. Accessed December 27, 2014. http://carnegie.org/publications/carnegie-reporter/ single/view/article/item/139/. 13 Cited in “A New Forum for Bringing Immigrant and Minority Entrepreneurs Together,” The New American Times November 7, 2013. Accessed December 30, 2014. www.tnatnews.com/new-forum-bringing-immigrant-minority-entrepreneurstogether/. 14 For a report on the visit, see “Obama Lauds Immigration Reform in Nashville Speech,” The Tennessean December 10, 2014. Accessed December 11, 2014. www. tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2014/12/09/obama-in-nashville-for-immigrationreform/20149205/. 15 “The Best Places for Business and Career,” Forbes July (2014). Accessed December 31, 2014. www.forbes.com/best-places-for-business/list/. 16 “Nashville Datascape, 2013,” Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, 16. Accessed December 31, 2014. www.nashvillechamber.com/docs/default-source/research-centerstudies/nashville-datascape-2013.pdf?sfvrsn=2. 17 This was one of two bills filed in the year to extend in-state tuition to students with undocumented parents. See Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, Tennessee General Assembly and Nashville Metropolitan Council, “2014 Legislative Scorecard,” 11. Accessed January 22, 2015. www.nashvillechamber.com/docs/defaultsource/Legislative-Scorecards/2014-legislative-scorecard.pdf?sfvrsn=4. 18 “Nashville Speaks Up: English Only Soundly Defeated,” The City Paper, January 22, 2009. Accessed January 6, 2015. http://nashvillecitypaper.com/content/city-news/ nashville-speaks-english-only-soundly-defeated. 19 Accessed December 30, 2014. www.migrationpolicy.org/data/state-profiles/state/ demographics/TN. 20 Ibid. 21 See for example, Olupona and Regina Gemignani (eds.), African Immigrant Religions in America; Adebayo Oyebade, “Yoruba Culture in Contemporary America,” in Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade, (eds.), Yoruba Fiction, Orature, and Culture: Oyekan Owomoyela and African Literature and the Yoruba Experience (Trenton: Africa World Press, 2011), 321–340; Toyin Falola and Ann Genova, (eds.), Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora (Trenton: Africa World Press, 2005); Steven Gregory, Santeria in New York City: A Study in Cultural Resistance (New York: Garland, 1999); and George Brandon, Santeria from Africa to the New World: The Dead Sell Memories (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1997). 22 Oyebade, “Yoruba Culture in Contemporary America,” 331. 23 On Muslim African immigrants in the United States, see two essays: Linda Beck, “West African Muslims in America: When Are Muslins Not Muslims?” and Yushau Sodiq, “African Muslims in the United States: The Nigerian Case,” in Olupona and Gemignani (eds.), African Immigrant Religions in America, 182–206. The Muslim community in Nashville is discussed in Rebecca Bynum and Elizabeth Noble, “Muslim Organization in Nashville, Tennessee: An Overview,” in New English Review, January (2008). Accessed December 29, 2014. www.newenglishreview.org/ Rebecca_Bynum/Muslim_Organization_in_Nashville,_Tennessee:_An_Overview/. 24 See “Religious Fervor Spills over into US” Accessed September 13, 2014. www. rccgna.org/InTheNews/tabid/86/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/11/Religious-fervorspills-over-into-US.aspx. 25 An important critical study on this is Olufunke Adeboye, “ ‘A Church in a Cinema Hall?’ Pentecostal Appropriation of Public Space in Nigeria,” Journal of Religion in Africa, 42 (2012): 145–171. 26 For some studies on Pentecostalism in Africa, see the following: Afe Adogame (ed.), Who is Afraid of the Holy Ghost? Pentecostalism and Globalization in Africa and

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

58

27 28

29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38

A. Oyebade Beyond (Trenton: Africa World Press, 2011); Wilhelmina J. Kalu, Nimi Wariboko, and Toyin Falola, (eds.), African Pentecostalism: Global Discourses, Migrations, Exchanges, and Connections (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2010); André Corten and R. Marshall-Fratani (eds.), Between Babel and Pentecost: Transnational Pentecostalism in Africa and Latin America (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2001); Asonzeh F. K. Ukah, “Globalisation of Pentecostalism in Africa: Evidence from the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG),” Institut français de recherche en Afrique (Ibadan, Nigeria: IFRA), 1 (2005) 93–112; O. B. E. Josiah Amata, The Nigerian Pentecostal Movement: The People, The Purpose and the Power (Lagos: Pillars House, 2002); and Ruth Marshall, “God is Not a Democrat: Pentecostalism and Democratization in Nigeria,” in Paul Gifford (ed.), The Christian Churches and the Democratization of Africa (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1995), 239–260. Accessed December 30, 2014. www.nytimes.com/2009/04/12/magazine/12churchest.html?pagewanted=7&_r=0]. This is expressed both in Matthew 28:19 and Mark 16:15 of the Holy Bible. The subject of “reverse evangelism” is examined in Ogbu U. Kalu, “The Anatomy of Reverse Flow in African Christianity: Pentecostalism and Immigrant African Christianity,” in Ludwig and Asamoah-Gyadu (eds.), African Christian Presence in the West, 30–54. See also Peter C. Wagner and Joseph Thompson, (eds.), Out of Africa: How the Spiritual Explosion Among Nigerians is Impacting the World (California: Regal Books, 2005). “Christianity in its Global Context, 1970–2020,” Society, Religion, and Mission, June (2013): 76. Accessed January 17, 2015. www.gordonconwell.com/netcommunity/ CSGCResources/ChristianityinitsGlobalContext.pdf. Membership Handbook of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Agape House, Nashville, (unpublished). The New American Times. Accessed February 5, 2015. www.tnatnews.com/about-us/. Gateway 2 Africa. Accessed February 5, 2015. http://gateway2africa.com/. Source: US Census Bureau, 2008–2012, cited in Gambino, Trevelyan, and Fitzwater, “The Foreign-Born Population from Africa,” 5. For more information on the church, see www.thelivingwordcogic.com/. For more information on the church, see www.newbgcm.org/page/church_history. See http://deploy-cdma.creflodollarministries.org/pdf/CDMA%20Member%20Directory. pdf. Psalm 128:5b (New American Standard Bible). The discussions generated by the forums led to the publication of a book on courtship and marriage authored by Adewuyi. See Ben Adewuyi, Before You Marry: 101 Questions and Answers on Courtship and Marriage (Kingston Springs, TN: Westview, 2014).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

4

The making of the Liberian Diasporas and the challenges of postwar reconstruction Chris Agoha

Introduction Liberia is an aberration and an archetype: in the African context, its political history is unique, yet its contemporary record is typical of other African states. It does not have a colonial legacy, except for the quasi-colonial period in which the American Colonization Society (ACS), an American pseudo-humanitarian association governed by white American slave owners, ruled the dominion from 1822 to 1847. In 1847, the country became a republic. This chapter discusses the role of politics and conflict in the emergence of the Liberia Diasporas. First, it argues that the single party hegemony of the True Whig Party created a nepotistic elite that marginalized and disenfranchised the majority of the population. Political opponents and oppositions were targeted and capriciously prosecuted, and this trend led to an exodus of Liberians to seek sanctuary abroad. Second, the fourteen years of civil conflict exerted decisive pressure on Liberians to flee and settle in several countries around the world. The displaced Liberians built new lives and assimilated into the social fabrics of their respective host nations. With their transnational identity, they continue to use the newly acquired context to express dual allegiance to their country of origin and their host nation, despite several challenges. Third, there has been recurring debate over the relationship between the Diaspora and homeland Liberians. This relationship, which tends to mitigate collective efforts towards development, is further explored in this chapter. Finally, the chapter analyzes these challenges and the context of postwar reconstruction and governance from the standpoint of the Liberia Diasporas. This chapter will be restricted to the Liberia Diasporas in the Americas, particularly in the United States.

Conceptualizing Diaspora The concepts of Diaspora and transnationalism have attained an almost iconic status in social science. The central themes these concepts evoke are movements, mobility, and circulation. While the origin and development of these concepts and their application in various disciplines have followed different trajectories in the past several years, there has been a convergence in usage of the terms. This has somewhat diluted the intellectual rigor of these concepts.1 In the past decade

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

60

C. Agoha

and a half, the term “Diaspora” has become an all-purpose signifier of various modes of population dispersal. To a great extent, it has replaced and displaced terms such as “exile,” “foreign,” “alien,” “forced dislocation from homeland,” “immigrant” communities, and even “fugitives.” More importantly, with the emergence of globalization as a dominant discourse and the influence of postmodernism in the social sciences and humanities, the term transnationalism has come into focus. The association between Diasporas and dispersion is unambiguous in the case of Jews or Greeks. Once, however, the notion of Diaspora is applied to other religious or ethnic groups, “it becomes immediately apparent how difficult it is to find a definition that makes a clear distinction between a migration and a Diaspora, or between a minority and a Diaspora.”2 Shain Yossi, for example, uses the term to refer to a people with common national origin who reside outside a claimed or an independent home territory.3 For his part, Milton Esman defined a Diaspora as a minority ethnic group of migrant origin that maintains sentimental or material links with its land of origin.4 These, and other, definitions of Diaspora share in common notions of a relationship between groups of people that is based on some form of national ancestry, and sometimes of dispersion. These interpretations or descriptions of Diaspora are problematic. First, assuming the traditional notion of Diaspora as related to dispersion leaves out all those groups that, by virtue of the formation of a nation state, were separated but not dispersed by territorial boundaries. Mexicans and the descendants of those living in Northern Mexico before its annexation by the United States are one example. Numerous African groups in the postcolonial period provide other examples of separation without dispersion. Second, these definitions assume that any group by virtue of its common national origin and scatteredness constitutes a Diaspora. However, this categorization may include groups who do not identify with what is regarded as the homeland. In other words, not all ethnicities who have a common national origin can be regarded, or regard themselves, as Diasporas. Rather, there are several factors, including dispersion, migration, dislocation, displacements, etc., that qualify an individual or group to become a Diaspora. Third, the assumption that Diasporas are groups that retain some meaningful link with perceived homelands is important, but imprecise. The assumption depends on some abstract notion of a link or connection that is difficult to pin down. What act or acts are sufficient to constitute a linkage meaningful enough to be considered as Diasporic? How much of a linkage is required to call a group a Diaspora? And who is defining the connection—an individual, a community, an outside group, or all of them? In contemporary transnational migrant communities, Diasporic involvement can range from the exclusive maintenance of family ties to the homeland to establishing political connections that may lead to acquiring positions of power. In this regard, at least four kinds of involvement can be observed, at the family, community, social, and political level. In most cases, migrants maintain family ties and some community and social connections with the homeland. Political

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

61

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

exiles who struggle to return to their homeland and (re)gain power are more eager to pursue political links with local constituencies. In these cases, however, the establishment of ties as an indicator of Diasporic connection requires further specification. Thus, meaningful contact needs to be tied to another triggering or motivational variable. As a preliminary definition, and in this context, Gabriel Sheffer offers a broader definition of Diasporas. According to him, a Diaspora is a: socio-political formation, created as a result of either voluntary or forced migration, whose members regard themselves as the same ethno-national origin or who permanently reside as minorities in one or several host countries. Members of such entities maintain regular or occasional contacts with what they regard as their homeland and with individuals and groups of the same background residing in other host countries.5 By virtue of this reality, Diasporas implicate themselves internationally through relationships with the homeland, other international entities, and host country governments and societies, thereby influencing various dynamics, including development. Against the background of the increase in human mobility, the cognate notions of globalization, Diaspora, and transnationalism have gained currency as means of making sense of migrant and refugee practice and the long-term, longdistance connections maintained between family members, communities, and all states across international borders. From this new theoretical point of departure, notions of push–pull factors, remittances, and conspicuous consumption, brain drain, and return/repatriation have gradually been complemented with explorations of the complexity of migratory experiences, social remittances, human capital potential and Diaspora, and transnational networks.6 In exploring the dispersion, Diasporization, and trans-nationalization of populations across geographic regions and continents, migration studies have reemerged as a vibrant area of research. Accompanying such exploration is the growing recognition that globalization is uneven in its scope and effects. There are winners and losers, those who are included while others are excluded, those who are engaged and those who are marginalized, those gaining skills and recognition by mobilizing their existence and those becoming deskilled and perhaps further marginalized in the process.7

Politics and civil conflict in Liberia This section discusses the hegemonic politics under the Americo-Liberia leadership that induced conflict and led to the epoch of migration.8 The history of the Liberian Diaspora has not been fully documented in scholarly research. However, many of the events that gave rise to the Liberian Diaspora can be traced from the 1970s on three levels. First, following the death of President William V. S. Tubman in 1970, Liberia appeared positioned for what many of its

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

62

C. Agoha

citizens saw as a march towards a prosperous democracy. Tubman’s successor William R. Tolbert, Jr. began to set the stage for repositioning the nation. However, his regime was abruptly terminated in a military coup of the People’s Redemption Council under the leadership of Master Sergeant Samuel Doe. This was widely seen as an indigenous-led coup. The coup participants aligned themselves with the progressive intelligentsia, labeled by detractors as socialist advocates.9 The coup began the primary surge of involuntary migration when many Liberians left in unprecedented numbers. The first wave of migration occurred in the aftermath of the 1980 coup. The predominant group to migrate were those of Americo-Liberian descent. This group experienced unprecedented violence and pillaging of their properties. The indiscriminate anti-settler persecution that ensued lasted for years, and even when it began to regress, the effects remained. Many settlers sought refuge in the United States, Europe, and other parts of the world. Second, on November 12, 1985, General Thomas Quiwonkpa, a target of Doe’s earlier purge of the military, and his allies launched a coup to overthrow Samuel Doe, but it failed. Students and professors of the University of Liberia and Cuttington University had celebrated the coup, but this was short lived. Doe’s military First Battalion based at Camp Schefflin on the outskirts of Monrovia crushed the coup attempt. This event provided the premise for Doe and his ethnic Khran-dominated military squads to take revenge on Quiwonkpa’s loyalists. This was characterized by arbitrary arrests and swift execution of individuals linked to the coup and those perceived as anti-Doe. Consequently, many Liberians whom the Doe administration viewed as supporters of and sympathizers toward the aborted coup left the country en masse for the United States and neighboring countries. These included journalists, intellectuals, and professionals, members of the military and security apparatuses, business people, and clergy.10 The third wave of forced migration occurred following the December 1989 incursion into Liberia of the National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) rebel group, which was led by Charles Taylor. This period witnessed the largest number of Liberians leaving the country; many people from the Khran and Mandingo ethnic groups, who were identified as Doe loyalists, in part, due to their ethnic affiliation with these two groups, became targets of the NPFL’s forced imposition of its will on the Liberian people. The Mano and Gio ethnic groups who had been persecuted during the Samuel Doe regime now made up a significant number of the NPFL forces and sought revenge on the crimes committed by the Khran and Mandingo ethnic groups. This pursuit was structured and carried out by the Charles Taylor-led NPFL.11 This third mass displacement and the migration of Liberians abroad lasted from 1989 to 2003, a period of fourteen years of civil war. Even at the end of the conflict in 2003, many Liberians continued to migrate abroad as they considered the country still fragile and unstable to live in. The fourth groups of Liberian Diasporas are those who legitimately left the country for educational advancement. However, the political instability and the prolonged civil conflict have compelled them to remain in their countries of their domicile until the present.

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

63

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The outlook of the Liberia Diasporas The term “Liberia Diasporas” refers to Liberians and descendants of Liberians living outside the territorial boundaries of Liberia. Dispersed in many countries, their concentration varies from one country to another, and, due to the limited research on the Liberia Diasporas, there is no precise way to determine their actual number. Many migrated to more than one country in search of better opportunity, and as immigrants for other reasons they may not be counted in the census of their host or adopted countries. The number of migrants moving into a particular country largely depends on the relations between the leaders of Liberia and the host nation. For instance, in Sierra Leone, Liberian refugees were welcome until the 1991 cross-border attacks by Charles Taylor and the NPFL occurred,12 straining relations between the two countries. In the United States, because of the long historical links and the increasing US influence in Liberia, citizens of Liberia were welcomed en masse. However, those on Temporary Protection Status (TPS) will be mandated to return once Liberia is deemed stable enough to accommodate the return of its citizens living abroad.13 About 10,000 to 15,000 Liberians have been living under the TPS since 1991. Since then, the United States government has granted them several extensions of residency, because of the continuing instability in their homeland.14 Consequently, following the restoration of democratic government, the US government concluded that sufficient stability had been attained and that the designation of TPS for Liberia would be terminated on October 1, 2007.15 This did not happen, as many Liberians continued to remain in the United States under the Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) granted by the government. In September 2013, President Obama extended the DED to Liberians for an additional twenty-four months. However, there is a reluctance from many Diaspora Liberians to return home for several reasons: since the restoration of democracy, Liberians have learned that many leaders and policy makers have not been perceptive in considering a broad range of mechanisms to address the nation’s workforce difficulties; many Diaspora residents are concerned about whether the conflict is merely dormant; others question the governance capacity of the government and consider the consequences of disrupting their settled lives to return home. The government of Liberia has expressed a lack of capacity to accommodate all Liberians under the TPS status should the government of the United States send them back home.16 Instead, there is a preference for a gradual return and a progressive absorption into Liberian society. In the United States in 2003, 6,873 Liberian refugees filled out applications for refugee status. They represented the fourth highest rate of all refugees in the US In the following years, the number of asylum seekers continued to grow. In 2004, 4,918 Liberian refugees were approved for refugee status with a total of 7,140 Liberians being admitted that year. The same year, they accounted for 13.5 percent of all refugees in the United States.17 It is also important to underline that, in the 1960s, many Liberians who left the country for the United States went for further studies after obtaining their

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

64

C. Agoha

Bachelor degrees at home. During this time, Liberian students organized the Liberian Student Union, which was eventually renamed the Union of Liberian Association in the Americas (ULAA).18 The period 1971–1980 witnessed the political radicalization of Liberia Diaspora students, which was marked by the establishment of various political movements.19 The first of these movements was the Movement for Justice in Africa. This organization was created by leftist Liberian scholars in the United States, namely Togba-Nah Tipoteh, Henry Boima Fahnbulleh, Jr., Amos Sawyer, and Dew Mason. A year later, in 1974, Gabriel Baccus Matthews created the Progressive Alliance of Liberia, which formed the foundation for future political activities in Liberia.20 Liberians living in the Diaspora now assert membership in a powerful, extensive global network that has enabled them to acquire bicultural and even multicultural identities. A sense of belonging in multiple cultural settings based on a vision of a receding national boundary, while transnational identity gains preeminence, has now emerged.21 With their transnational identity, Liberians continue to use the newly acquired context to express dual allegiance with their country of origin and their host nation. Liberians living in exile have used their network in powerful western countries to agitate for social change and democratic governance in their country of origin.

Contrasting Liberians in the Diaspora and the Diasporas in Liberia In his book The African Diaspora: Slavery, Modernity, and Globalization, Toyin Falola argued that powerful forces are redefining identities within and between frontiers, producing conditions that de-nationalize and de-territorialize us as we travel, mix, mingle, and develop a global framework, and as we reconstitute national or local identities in new spaces.22 He further noted that new or modified identities can emerge in the context of the high influx of immigrants who struggle with the politics of incorporation, and in the context of “invisible migrants” who do not necessarily want to become citizens or make political and economic claims in host communities.23 While the Liberian Diasporas are struggling to seek new identities and incorporation in the Americas, other Diasporas in Liberia and the continuing influx of “economic migrants” are desperately trying to gain space and exploit the abundant economic resources and investment opportunities. This is the paradox of immigration no matter what form it takes. When Liberians look outwards, the dominant narrative is that of migration to the Americas, particularly the United States. The homeland becomes a secondary or even abandoned issue. Since the time of slavery, first-generation migrants usually think of the homeland and have a dream to return. The dream became actualized as some physical relocation, now labeled as the “Back-to-Africa” movements from the United States to Liberia and Sierra Leone, from Brazil to Ghana, and other such migrations. Where physical relocation was not possible, the idea of a homeland became embedded in memory, which in turn was expressed in poetry, songs,

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

65

mythologies, and ceremonies. On the other hand, when others—Europeans, Americans, and Asians—look outwards, the dominant thinking is migration to Africa to exploit the natural resources of the continent. In this context, Liberia becomes one of the preferred destinations because of its abundant resources. There are dilemmas of relocation or return to homeland for many Diaspora Liberians, and these are the manifestation of several factors: the memories and tragic effects of the civil wars; the loss of all family members and relatives; the loss of properties; the continuing fragile atmosphere, which may not guarantee a sustainable peace; the lack of economic opportunities; the possible prosecution of those (in the Diaspora) indicted by the Truth and Reconciliation Report for committing gross human rights violations and war crimes. Therefore, for many Liberian Diasporas, connection to the homeland will probably be in the form of temporary visits to demonstrate that indeed they have a birthplace somewhere in Africa. For many, the daily reality of survival or of thriving in the Diaspora makes it difficult for them to embark on a permanent relocation, and, as Toyin Falola argued, there may be more corpses being sent home for final burial rites and interment that those who return to live their dream of a comfortable life after decades of toil.25 However, as in the case of many Diasporic Liberians who have lost practically everything in the homeland, and have an umbilical attachment to America, they may prefer to leave a “death will” to be buried in the Diaspora. This prevailing scenario has therefore created space for the Diasporas in Liberia to also search for identities and incorporation into their new homeland. Consequently, about 90 percent of the economy, including investment, agriculture, industry, construction, mining, and hospitality, is dominated by the Lebanese, Indians, Americans, and Europeans. The remaining 10 percent is in the hands of an indigenous, but highly enterprising, Mandingo ethnic group, which has been labeled as foreigners by the other fourteen ethnic groups, and consequently despised. The predicament of Liberian Diasporas and others at home, particularly the vast indigenous population, was the consequence of the political history and economy of the country shaped by the settler Americo-Liberia hegemonic leadership. The economic malaise of Liberia was marked by some historical epochs. From the beginning, the ACS, through its ruling agents the Americo-Liberians, instituted and maintained a paternaltarian system of governance, until the African settlers declared independence in 1847.26 The term paternaltarian is used to describe the extremely paternalistic and authoritarian social and political order instituted by the ACS to dominate and subjugate the original black setters. The legacy of the ACS government apparatus deeply impacted the economic and socio-political order and was responsible for generating conflict and the structure and nature of the post-ACS regimes. The Americo-Liberians, who are estimated at about 5 percent, used the platform of the dominant and hegemonic True Whig Party to monopolize political and economic power to the exclusion of indigenous Liberians, and this increasingly generated an undercurrent of discontent. In post-war Liberia, neo-patrimonialism, a dominant feature in leadership and governance, was perpetuated by the dominant Americo-Liberian elite. 24

66

C. Agoha

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Neo-patrimonialism is one of the central concepts in Francis Fukuyama’s major study The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution. Fukuyama, basing his analysis on the classic writings of Max Weber, distinguishes neo-patrimonialism from modern state systems. He stated that impersonal modern states … are difficult institutions to both establish and maintain, since neo-patrimonialism—recruitment based on kinship or personal reciprocity—is the natural form of social relationship to which human beings will revert in the absence of other norms and incentives. . . . The most universal form of human political form of interaction . . . is a patron–client relationship in which a leader exchanges favors in return for support from a group of followers.27 Michael Bratton and Nicolas van de Walle, in their seminal study Democratic Experiments in Africa: Regime Transition in Contemporary Perspective also placed neo-patrimonialism in a contemporary context at the center of their analysis: In neo-patrimonial political systems, an individual rules by the dint of personal prestige and power; ordinary folk are treated as extension of the ‘big man’s’ household, with no rights or privileges other than those bestowed by the ruler. Authority is entirely personalized, shaped by the ruler’s preferences rather than those bestowed by the laws. The ruler ensures the political stability of the regime and personal political survival by providing a zone of security in an uncertain environment and by selectively distributing favours and material benefits to loyal followers who are not citizens of the polity so much as the ruler’s clients.28 Indeed, neo-patrimonialism is a term that has been used for patrons using state resources in order to secure the loyalty of clients in the general population, and it is indicative of informal patron–client relationships that can reach from the very high up in state structures down to individuals, including at small village levels. Neo-patrimonialism may underlie or supplant the bureaucratic structures of the state, in that only those with connections have real power. Further, it undermines political institutions and the rule of law, and it is a corrupt practice. This illustrates the current state of affairs in post-war Liberia. The country’s Diasporic population, who have experienced genuine democracy and good governance in their host countries, remains very pessimistic about the establishment of peace, stability, and development in their homeland.

Relationship between the Diasporas and home landers The relationship between the Liberians in the Diaspora and those in the homeland has been tenuous. There appears to be a sense of rejection of Liberians from the Diaspora as being insensitive to the plight of their fellow Liberians in the

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

67

homeland. There are two worldviews that policymakers can explore in understanding this and for the consolidation of national identity. They are the elitist and the entitlement ethos.29 The elitist ethos, which is often propagated by Diaspora residents, particularly those living in the United States, is that “they know what is best” for Liberia better than their counterparts in the homeland. Some of these Diaspora Liberians see themselves as the exclusive repositories of specialized skills, knowledge, and competences. Hence, they are the most qualified people to assume positions of trust in Liberia. But this view fails to account for many Diaspora Liberians who, in spite of the opportunities available abroad, could not utilize these to enhance their professional and educational development. The entitlement ethos makes the argument for Liberians living in the homeland, especially those who remained there, not by choice, but by forced circumstances, including the harsh realities of war. Consequently, they may have been unable or unwilling to leave, or just unfortunate to have stayed in Liberia during the war, and had to suffer the effects of the conflict. As a result of these sad experiences, some homelanders have come to express anti-Diaspora sentiments, with comments such as “where were you when we were suffering the effects of the war,” “you ran away,” and “now you want to come and enjoy.” These rhetorical comments are imbued with an entitlement mindset that closely approximates the characteristics of ethnocentrism.30 The continuing animosity between the Liberian Diasporas and their homeland counterparts show the inability of both groups to collaborate and develop a virtuous democratic and pluralistic approach towards post-war reconstruction. In the light of the above, it could be argued that the attitude of the homelanders somewhat parallels the “superior– inferior myth” that the settlers and the later Americo-Liberian hegemony spread against the indigenous people, which was highly resisted, albeit to no avail. During a recent speech to the Liberia Diasporas in the United States, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Augustine Ngafuan noted that a good number of Liberian deportees come back home terribly frustrated and extremely desperate. He further stated that, sadly enough, they dump their frustration and desperation on the country by replicating in Liberia some of the very bad behaviors that occasioned their deportation. Such behavior undermines the peace and progress of the country. To avert this depressing phenomenon, Liberian organizations in the Diaspora must initiate programs and policies that assist or encourage the capacity-building efforts of their constituents and discourage deviancy and crime.31 The statement of Ngafuan is very instructive; support and cooperation from Liberia Diasporas to the homelanders will help to bring about a positive change in Liberia.

Diasporas and post-war reconstruction What role can the Diasporas play in Liberia’s post war reconstruction efforts? There was explicit recognition of the potential and capacity of the Diasporas to bring about a positive change in Liberia when, following her assumption of

68

C. Agoha

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

office in 2005, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf appointed to her cabinet Liberian Diasporas who were in the United States or had returned home after the war to seek political positions. A close look shows that such individuals included, but were not limited to, the following: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Dr. Walter Gwenigale—Minister for Health Mr. George Tubman—Managing Director of the National Ports Authority Mr. Luseni Donzo—Minister for Public Works Mr. Amara Konneh—Minister for Planning and Economic Affairs Ms. Olubanke King-Akerele—Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Jackson Doe—Minister for Transport Mr. Harry Greaves—Managing Director, Liberia Petroleum Refining Company Mr. Fomba Sirleaf—Director, National Security Agency Mr. Brownie Samukai—Minister for National Defense (and the two Deputy Ministers in the Ministry of Defense, namely; Othello Warwick and Dionysius Sebwe) Dr. Lawrence Bropleh—Minister for Information, Culture and Tourism Dr. Joseph Korto—Minister for Education Mr. Ambulai Johnson—Minister for Internal Affairs Mr. Richard Tolbert—Managing Director, National Investment Commission Dr. Christopher Toe—Minister for Agriculture Dr. Edward McClain—Chief of Staff and Minister of State for Presidential Affairs.

On the assumption of leadership, President Sirleaf had promised that her administration would be an inclusive one that would reach out to all Liberians. She made a pledge that individuals nominated/appointed to serve in the government would be ethnically diverse, cut across a regional cross section, including the Diaspora, and be drawn from various backgrounds, without compromising efficiency. The President stated that the following tenets would guide the nomination of her team: qualification, competence, integrity, and a clean record on human rights.32 These appointments elicited reactions from a wide spectrum of the society, particularly the homeland population, who felt excluded and marginalized. Some critics of the President contend that those Liberians who have lived in the Diaspora for long periods of time have no right to be given positions of authority, noting that they are out of touch with the Liberian reality. This category also opined that this could lead to the perpetuation of the inequalities between the indigenous Liberians and the Americo-Liberians that have plagued the country from 1847. The debate over “Diaspora returnees” also raised the question of citizenship laws. Liberian Alien and Naturalization Law provide for the forfeiture of Liberian citizenship if an individual takes an oath of allegiance in a foreign country.33 It is alleged that many of those appointed to government have American citizenship. This should have disqualified them from occupying positions in the Liberian government. Diaspora returnees were perceived as gatecrashers in search of jobs in a new Liberia, without a record of achievement.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

69

Proponents of homeland/indigenous political leadership have also suggested that the negative impact of the Diaspora’s role in Liberia has been a ‘governance crisis.’ This attitude of the governing elite is not surprising, given the belief that, on the whole, Diaspora Liberians tend to be more skilled, better educated, and wealthier than Liberians in the homeland. Unfortunately, Diaspora Liberians have failed by and large to leverage this power and wealth to promote democratic governance.34 In the views of Andrews and Hadjimichael, another negative aspect of the Diaspora’s role has been its impact on public policies, particularly as they relate to the “corruption and poverty crisis.” Many members of the Diaspora have served in influential decision-making positions, but they have never been able to develop effective policies to tackle widespread corruption and poverty in Liberia.35 It actually seems that the Diaspora has abetted poverty and corruption in Liberia, which have remained endemic and serve as major obstacles to development. The fluid nature of identity development in the Diaspora has important implications for national identity formation in the homeland. Several factors could determine the role that the Diaspora can play in the home land: the degree or level of Diaspora involvement; the focus or orientation the Diasporic group takes; who initiates the Diasporic relationship; and the impact of Diaspora involvement on the host country. The Diaspora is a stakeholder of enormous value to peace, stability, and economic security. To put the foregoing into context, the Diaspora has four basic functions relative to the reconstruction of Liberia. First, it has continued to play the role of a source of remittance to underpin the war-decimated political economy. Remittances are said to be a prominent source of external funding for developing nations,36 coming from sources in the Diaspora.37 Second, it has been a human “experiment” for dealing with differences, given that Liberians living abroad have had to forcibly learn to meld into other cultures, including that of their receiving nations and within the intra and interethnic communities and cultures developing among them. Third, in terms of workforce development for the postwar economy, the Liberian Diaspora stands to serve as a source of “brain gain” for the homeland. Skilled Liberians, trained abroad, before, or during their refugee periods, are certainly a resource that can be harnessed to help the country rebuild if the government makes appropriate use of them. Fourth, the Liberia Diaspora will remain a staple of the nation’s political economy. Diaspora residents could increasingly lobby on behalf of their nation, just as other Diaspora communities do, including the Cuban, Indian, and Jewish lobbies abroad who advocate on behalf of their countries of origin.38 Diaspora populations are one of the primary and most stable funders of developing economies. The World Bank reports that officially recorded remittance flows to developing countries were double that of official development aid, and they are on the rise.39 Recognizing the critical role of remittances, the brain-drain phenomenon, and the other effects of migration, the international development community has begun to actively court and engage Diasporas in the service of development goals. For example, the United States Agency for International

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

70

C. Agoha

Development has established a Diaspora Networks Alliance to engage Diaspora communities more effectively in the development process.40 The United Nations Institute for Training and Research recently focused one of its Migration and Development training seminars on the role of Diasporas in peace building.41 In Africa, regional actors and post-conflict governments have been working in new and innovative ways to facilitate Diaspora engagement. In 2008, the African Union began the process of designating the Diaspora as a Sixth African Region and developing “modalities for Diaspora participation in the organs and activities of the Union.”42 In 2007, the government of Sierra Leone established an Office of the Diaspora to “lay the foundation for a productive and mutually beneficial partnership between the Government of Sierra Leone and the Diaspora.”43 A new social development paradigm for post-war Liberia will be incomplete if it fails to consider seriously the voluntary strategic integration of Liberians living in the Diaspora into the post-conflict political economy. This segment of the Liberian population has an essential role to play in the enduring problem of weak or unskilled workforce capacity in an era of globalization that is now a knowledge economy.44 However, the Diaspora also poses challenges with regard to reintegrating them back into the political economy in a smooth manner that would prevent possible social cleavages and economic challenges. Accordingly, in continued recognition of their immense skills and capacity, the government of Liberia has established within the Office of the Ministry of State the Diaspora Affairs Department and the Diaspora Engagement Project. These two entities will employ Diaspora consultants such as a project manager, Diaspora policy expert, Diaspora advisor, and Diaspora web designer/manager. The government of Liberia has received a grant from the International Development Association towards the cost of establishing and operationalizing the Diaspora Affairs Department. The objective is to strengthen the capacity of the government of Liberia’s Diaspora Affairs Department within the Ministry of State to design and implement the country’s Diaspora Engagement Programme and effectively coordinate the project activities in line with support of the World Bank to the Ministry/Office.45 Even with this recognition, there is skepticism about the role of Diaspora elements in the light of a well-founded perception that many of them have obtained huge mortgages in the host countries. Their coming home to take appointments will induce a reverse remittance/capital flight that will be used to pay back their mortgages. This concern appears to be valid, given that most of the Liberia Diasporas who have served in the government return to the United States. There has not been any evidence of investing in the homeland associated with them, but, rather, a preference for investing abroad. This could bring about a change that would see more appointment of skilled and qualified homeland Liberians into government positions.

Conclusion The concept of Diaspora is well suited to accommodate the global networks that emerged from dispersed migration patterns that include more than one migration

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

71

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

destination. Diaspora formations are not only related to population dispersal. They may also result from border redefinition. Most Diasporas are internally differentiated. However, to become important players in homeward-oriented national politics, some links between the different social layers within a Diaspora must exist. Therefore, a first premise for engaging Diasporas is to understand the contexts shaping Diaspora formation. A context analysis must involve: • • • •

the degree of internal division within Diasporas; the basis for such divisions (e.g., class, ethnicity, political affiliation); the degree of community, elite, or activist consciousness regarding the need for a link to the home country, including attempts to reconcile internal divisions; the actors involved when active links to the home country are established, the direction and nature of their actions, and the dynamics that may result therefrom.

When the notion of Diaspora enters home country vocabulary, expectations tend to rise. A context analysis must therefore also encompass: • • • •

the degree to which the home government encourages such links; whether such encouragement goes beyond capturing remittances and the migrant vote; the perception of emigrants and refugees by the home society and communities; whether organized Diaspora groups are representative of broader development goals encompassing the transnational social field of home country interests.46

Finally, it is important to consider those factors that can create an effective system of Diaspora outreach. This system should consider at least five factors: first, an outreach state policy towards the Diaspora that at a minimum, recognizes and validates its communities living abroad; second, the establishment of a communication mechanism between organized Diaspora groups and the state; third, a joint agenda that addresses the interests of the Diaspora and the state on issues of common concern; fourth, Diaspora and state confidence-building efforts that in practice recognize the importance of Diasporas in nation-states; and fifth, the investment of substantive resources, both material and human, to implement the outreach efforts. These efforts should be considered as minimum considerations for an effective process of cooperation in an increasingly intertwined world between states and migrant communities.

Notes 1 Luxshi Vimalarajah, and Rudhramoorthy Cheran, Empowering Diasporas: The Dynamics of Post-War Transitional Tamil Politics, Berlin: Berghof Conflict Research, Occasional Paper No. 31 (2010): 10.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

72

C. Agoha

2 Gerard Chaliand, and Jean Pierre Rageau, The Penguin Atlas of Diasporas (New York, Viking, 1995), xiii. 3 Shain Yossi, “Ethnic Diasporas and US Foreign Policy,” Political Studies Quarterly, 109, no. 5 (1995): 811–841. 4 Milton Esman, “Diasporas and International Relations,” in Gabriel Sheffer (ed.), Modern Diasporas in International Politics (London: Croom Helm Ltd, 1986). 5 Gabriel Sheffer, “Ethnic Diasporas: A Threat to their Hosts?” in Myron Weiner (ed.), International Migration and Security (Boulder, CO, Westview Press, 2003), 10–11. 6 Ninna Nyberg Sørensen, “Living Across World: Diaspora, Development and Transnational Engagement,” Geneva: International Organization for Migration, 2007, 3. 7 Ibid., 4. 8 Americo-Liberia has been associated with black emigrants, re-captives, and white ACS agents in the pre-1841 era, who ruled Liberia and dominated political leadership. 9 Bryon Tarr, “Founding the Liberia Action Party,” Liberia Studies Journal, XV, no. 1 (1990): 13–41. 10 Emmanuel Dolo, Democracy versus Dictatorship: Crisis in Africa’s Oldest Republic—Liberia, (Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1996). See also Stephen Ellis, The Mask of Anarchy: The Destruction of Liberia and the Religious Dimension of an African Civil War (New York: New York University Press, 1999), and Jeremy Levitt, The Evolution of Deadly Conflict in Liberia: From Paternaltarianism to State Collapse (Durham, NC: Carolina Academy Press, 2005). 11 Amos Sawyer, Beyond Plunder: Towards Democratic Governance in Liberia, (Boulder, CO: Lynn Rienner Publishers, 2005). See also Dolo, Democracy versus Dictatorship (1996); Ellis, The Mask of Anarchy (1999); Levitt, The Evolution of Deadly Conflict in Liberia, (2005). 12 Ellis, The Mask of Anarchy, (1999), 16. 13 The Temporary Protection Status is a special privilege granted by the United States Government to Liberians that ensured that victims of natural disaster and wars enjoy 18 months of residency in the United States. This has not been fully implemented. 14 Sabah Chadwick, “A History of Liberia, its Conflict and its Minnesotan Diaspora,” January 10, 2006, from www.sites.google.com/a/macalester.edu/refugees/liberians. 15 United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, 2007, from www.uscis.gov/. 16 Inaugural speech of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, delivered at the Capitol Hill Monrovia, Republic of Liberia, January 16, 2006. 17 Chadwick, “A History of Liberia.” 18 Samuel Watkins, Liberia Communication (London: AuthorHouse Publishing, 2007), 130. 19 Cecil Franweah Frank, “A Critical Look at the Role of the Diaspora in Liberia Development,” A speech delivered during the ULAA 38th National General Assembly in the United States, January 3, 2013. 20 Amos Sirleaf, “He Died Before His Plans Were Realized; President Tolbert: A Political Crisis of Good Governance and Leadership Vacuum in Liberia,” (London: AuthorHouse, 2005), 102. 21 Emmanuel Dolo, Ethnic Tensions in Liberia’s National Identity Crisis: Problems and Possibilities (Cherry Hill, NJ: African Homestead Legacy Publishers, 2007), 189. 22 Toyin Falola, The African Diaspora: Slavery, Modernity, and Globalization (New York: University of Rochester Press, 2013), 313. 23 Ibid. 24 Ibid., 240. 25 Ibid. 26 Levitt, The Evolution of Deadly Conflict in Liberia, 4. 27 Francis, Fukuyama, The Origin of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011), 450–453.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The making of the Liberian Diasporas

73

28 Michael Bratton and Nicolas van de Walle, Democratic Experiment in Africa: Regime Transition in Contemporary Perspective (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997), 61. 29 Dolo, “Ethnic Tensions in Liberia’s National Identity Crisis,” 195. 30 Ibid., 196. 31 Augustine Ngafuan, “Liberia Progress: Role of Liberians in the Diaspora,” paper presented to the Liberia Diasporas in the United States, 2003. 32 Statement by Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, during her inauguration as the President of the Republic of Liberia, January 2006. 33 Constitution of Liberia, Chapter IV—Citizenship, Article 27–28, Republic of Liberia, 1986. 34 Frank, “A Critical look at the Role of the Diaspora” (2013). 35 David Andrews and Michael Hadjimichael, Liberia: 2006 Article IV Consultation and Staff-Monitored Program—Staff Report: Public Information Notice on the Executive Board Discussion; and Statement by the Authorities of Liberia (Washington DC: International Monetary Fund, 2006), 3. 36 Damtew Teferra, “Brain Circulation: Unparalleled Opportunities, Underlying Challenges, and Outdated Presumptions,” Journal of Studies in International Education, 9, no. 3, Fall (2005); and Dilip Ratha, “Workers’ Remittances: An Important and Stable Source of External Development Finances,” 2003. 37 Cerstin Sander, Migrants Remittances to Developing Countries, A Scoping Study: Overview and Introduction to Issues for Pro-Poor Financial Services, Report prepared for DFID, June 2003. 38 Dolo, “Ethnic Tensions in Liberia’s National Identity Crisis,” (2007), 186. 39 Sanjeev Gupta, Catherine Pattillo, and Smita Wagh, “Making Remittances Work for Africa,” Finance and Development: A Quarterly Magazine of the IMF 44, no. 2 (June 2007). 40 USAID, Diaspora Engagement: Remittances and Beyond, 2003, retrieved September 26, 2014, from: http//www.usaid.gov/partnerships-opportunities/diaspora. 41 United Nations Institute of Training and Research, retrieved September 26, 2014 from: www.unitar.org/ny/international-law-and-policy/migration-and-developmentseries. 42 Decision on the Representation of the African Diaspora at Assemblies of the African Union, Doc. EX.CL/406(XII) Add.1, 12th Ordinary Council (January 25–29, 2008). 43 Sierra Leone Office of the Diaspora, retrieved September 26, 2014 from: www. diasporaaffairs.gov.sl/. 44 Damtew Teferra, “Brain Circulation: Unparalleled Opportunities,” (2005). 45 The New Democrat Newspaper, Republic of Liberia, February 2014, 8–9. 46 Ninna Nyberg Sørensen, “Conclusion: Thoughts for Policymakers and Practitioners,” in Sørensen (ed.), Living Across World (2007), 200–201; Manuel Orozco, “Conceptualizing Diasporas: Remarks about the Latino and Caribbean Experience,” in Sørensen (ed.), Living Across World, (2007), 22–28.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

5

Exploring the transformative effects of policy among African Diaspora voters Karen Okhoya-Inyanji

Introduction While Diaspora Africans strive and continue to make socioeconomic progress in their adoptive countries, they have also benefitted from using technology and affordable transportation to maintain strong ties with their sending nations. In this regard, diaspora citizens from over half of Africa’s nations have the choice of exercising dual-citizenship, while others are fighting for the implementation of overseas voting by their respective country governments.1 Dual-citizenship and diaspora voting are examples of policies that facilitate living and belonging abroad while allowing for engagement in home-country politics. Yet, there is a sense that the typical voluntary African immigrant is an atypical political agent. In other words, instead of adhering to ethnic voting patterns, African diaspora voters may be exhibiting enhanced political sophistication owing to their contact with the greater international community. With democratic rights at stake, it is important to systematically develop an understanding of the policy forces affecting Diaspora citizens’ home-country engagement, such as ease of travel, attitudes, and resources. What effects do these policies have on diaspora voting? Even more important, however, is the question of which policies undermine diaspora citizens’ potency as a voting bloc relative to home-country political influences and pressures. I must clarify that this inquiry addresses not the manifestation of change, but the process of change —and specifically the behavioral change that potentially occurs in different ecological contexts. To be sure, various home-country political factions increasingly appreciate the electoral potential of their diaspora counterparts. However, they cannot assume that they can maximize their political leverage in diaspora communities without understanding the realities and pressures experienced by diaspora populations as individuals and as collectives. Just as with in-country voters, diaspora voters must be understood within their existing contexts. Caroline Brettell and James Hollifield’s meta-analysis identifies disciplinespecific factors related to migrant behavior.2 For example, these variables include social and cultural contexts (transnational networks) from the Anthropology perspective, and geographical distribution and education attainment from the Demographical perspective. Meanwhile, in Political Science, dialogue is oriented

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 75 around policy and outcomes, as determined by institutions, rights, and interests. The authors go on to highlight work done in several disciplines. Nevertheless, despite extensive exploration of these variables—especially in Western democracies—relatively little is known about how those factors influence diaspora Africans’ political behavior, specifically at the ballot box. Figure 5.1 depicts a question mark at the center of the process in which policies are transformed into modified voting behavior. The question mark represents the realm of inquiry on which I will focus throughout this chapter. What are the theoretical bases of behavioral transformation? What kinds of policies are likely to transform diaspora citizens into more sophisticated political actors? In other words, what kinds of policies affect citizens enough to modify ethnic voting behavior? How do these transformative policies function in different ecologies in the diaspora setting? Furthermore, in the complex and diffuse policy environment, how can we narrow down the scope of the search for policies that significantly affect diaspora voting? How can we systematically relate policies, behavioral transformation, and diaspora voting behavior? What other factors are likely to affect voting behavior among Diaspora Africans? From a theoretical starting point, I assume that the Diasporic electoral effect hinges on at least the following: (1) political mobilization of Diaspora citizens and resources; (2) empowerment of Diaspora voters; (3) establishment of Diasporic relational communities in both the host country and the home country; and (4) reduction of disempowering practices in host countries. In the following sections, I explore the means for deriving the answers to this study’s questions from a theoretical perspective, while using policy data from Kenya and the United States for preliminary illustrative purposes. In identifying the policy forces that impact diaspora Africans’ electoral behavior, the primary goal of this study is to add to the growing body of knowledge that informs policymaking and political strategy with regard to this constituency. I first set the backdrop for this chapter with a general discussion of the international context within which Africa’s diaspora interacts with country policies. I then highlight existing theories of policy-driven behavioral transformation and how they apply to African diaspora communities. In this subsection, I introduce the dimensions of transformation that help link policy goals and citizens’ behavioral responses. After identifying the broad concepts that may help illuminate the translation of policies into voting behavior, I introduce Kenya’s case in order to demonstrate the insights into diaspora electoral behavior that can be derived from inquiry into the transformative effects of different policies. I conclude the chapter by

transformation POLICY

?

Figure 5.1 Transformation of policy into behavioral change.

MODIFIED VOTING BEHAVIOR

76

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

presenting techniques for identifying policy-driven behavioral transformation and the selection of analytical approaches. However, I begin by discussing the African diaspora and the international setting.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Migrants, policy, and the international context The political influence of diaspora Africans is not just a transnational phenomenon. Diaspora populations are also capable of influencing political and socio-economic circumstances in their host countries.3 The extent to which this shapes electoral politics is a contextual matter. But before proceeding with this discussion, it is important to first define the population of interest to this study. “African diaspora” is a term for which there is no widely agreed upon definition. Indeed, Paul Zeleza provides an extensive discussion on this subject in which he confronts the epistemic challenges of the concept.4 This leads him to define the term spatially, spatiosocially, geographically, temporally, and historically. In this chapter, I specifically refer to the “new” African diaspora as perceived by contemporary scholars—and which has migrated over the past two decades.5 Elsewhere, William Safran observes that “diaspora community” is a term that accommodates several categories of people—expatriates, expellees, political refugees, alien residents, economic refugees, and ethnic and racial minorities.6 I treat the term in a similar manner. However, for conceptual purposes, I limit my coverage to voluntary migrants—that is migrants who move for work, business, or other socio-economic reasons other than flight or expulsion. These are migrants who are free to travel home at any time of their choosing, and for purposes that may include voting in national elections. Meanwhile, where African migrants can and do go depends on the interplay of different factors, such as present and past immigration policies, geographical distance, income, education, access to information, security, and historical, political, and cultural links.7 As I have mentioned, migration systems theory assumes that migration alters social, cultural, economic, and institutional conditions at both the sending and receiving ends of the movement. That is to say that migration affects and is affected by the direct social environment of migrants, and it restructures the societal context of both the sending and the receiving places.8 Thus, if we expect policy to influence individual behavior in national and international settings, the process of identifying what happens in the translation of inputs (policies) into outputs (modified behavior) also requires an understanding of dynamics at each ecological level. While the social transformation of African migrants—as far as ethnic voting is concerned—suggests a transformation of individual migrants that occurs in the host country, Kenneth Maton demonstrates that the transformation process traverses ecological levels.9 Meanwhile, Jan Fidrmuc and Orla Doyle’s study among Czech and Polish migrants in Europe found that migrant voting behavior is affected by host country institutional environments—particularly democracy and economic freedom.10 However, Figure 5.2 depicts the embeddedness and interrelatedness of ecologies in diaspora electoral politics. In other words, the diagram depicts these relationships in three ecological tiers. It illustrates that,

Transformative effects of policy 77

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

WORLD

STATE

DIASPORA COMMUNITY

Capacity building

Culture-challenge MIGRANT

Relational community building

Group empowerment

Figure 5.2 Interrelatedness of ecologies and scope of transformative social policy effects.

when social transformation takes place, both national and international policies affect the individual and her community concomitantly. Given the multiple ecologies, actors, dimensions, and dimension-based facets of transformation, how can one persuade the very broad policy environment to divulge key policies that may influence the electoral behavior of African diaspora citizens? Maton’s assessment of transformational goals presents these elements as relevant across environmental domains and levels.11 For research and community action purposes, Maton proposes his framework of dimensions and goals as avenues by which complex social environments can be influenced. However, I narrow my focus to suggested strengths-based policies; social justice policies; social programs that enhance network embeddedness and social support for disconnected citizens; and critical social analysis. These four “policies” are selected to correspond with Maton’s policy dimensions and goals, and are

78

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Strengths-based social policies

Social justice policies

Effect: CAPACITY-BUILDING • Political mobilization of diapora citizens and resources

Effect: GROUP-EMPOWERMENT • Empowerment of diaspora voters

DIASPORA VOTING BEHAVIOR

Effect: RELATIONAL COMMUNITY-BUILDING • Establishment of diasporic relational communities

Effect: CULTURE-CHALLENGE • Reduction of disempowering practices

Social programs that enhance network embeddedness and social support for disconnected citizens

Critical social analysis

Figure 5.3 Policy-driven social transformation framework.

presented for illustrative purposes only. Nevertheless, they are potential starting points for policy classification. But how are such potentially relevant policies derived; and how might they affect diaspora citizens’ voting behavior? The policy-driven social transformation framework depicted in Figure 5.3 allows me to methodically sort through the policy forces that affect diaspora citizens’ political agency. The diagram depicts policies, their effects, and the behavioral consequences of exposure—in this case diaspora voting behavior. This causal path is not specific to any country or ecology, and therefore applies to the expanded political context in which diaspora Africans interact with policies and policy actors in both their home countries and abroad. Therefore, while there are likely to be numerous policies that might transform individuals and entire Diasporic communities, a transformative policy assessment essentially seeks to isolate policy goals or effects, and associate them with how migrants actually think, feel and act.

Theories of behavioral transformation In evaluating community psychology—that is, contexts of diversity within diversity —observers and analysts advocate for positive relationships among communities

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 79 divided on the bases of class, history, race/ethnicity, politics, gender, and other boundaries.12 Indeed, in focusing on South Africa, Steve Edwards concludes that “social transformation is a vast phenomenon, and that [a] country’s experience of contemporary social transformation will be infinitely diverse.”13 Consequently, in the African setting, theories that focus solely on economic incentives and rational behavior are inadequate for this kind of inquiry, because citizens respond to different kinds of incentives—the economic variety being just one class. Furthermore, economic or business transactions are often perceived as too impersonal for the political environment, where citizens expect to be treated in a manner that involves consideration of the many ideals and intricacies that transcend impersonal commercial transaction relationships.14 Figure 5.4 depicts the breadth of ideas and concepts that can be captured in modeling based on psychological theories.15 For example, in a study examining inter-group interaction and harmony, one may explore individuals’ behavioral change from the perspective of instrumental and classic conditioning at the individual level, and social networks and support at the interpersonal level. At the community level, an assessment of diffusion of values and philosophies may reveal the happenings in the aggregate contexts. Direct questioning of citizens using well-designed survey research instruments can be tailored to capture the concepts in any of these theoretical approaches depending on the policy type, scope, and context. An example of a survey that addresses citizens’ thoughts and sentiments on public affairs is the World Values Survey. The survey is the product of a global collaboration of scientists aimed at gathering and analyzing information on changes in the beliefs, values, and motivations of people around the world. Unfortunately, this survey does not generate panels of data that can be monitored

THEORIES OF BEHAVIORAL CHANGE 1. INDIVIDUAL LEVEL • Cognitive consistency and dissonance • Instrumental and classical conditioning • Heuristic and information-processing model • Stages of change • Theory of planned behavior

2. INTERPERSONAL LEVEL • Social cognitive theory • Social networks and support • Special influence and interpersonal communication • Attribution and balance theories

4. CONDITIONALITY (carrots and sticks)

Figure 5.4 Behavioral change across diasporic ecologies.

3. COMMUNITY LEVEL • Social capital • Diffusion of innovation

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

80

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

for changes in individuals over time. Nevertheless, time does affect citizens’ attitudes. An example of a temporal effect is the level of attachment migrants feel towards their native countries as time goes by. Such factors can influence the extent to which they participate in their home-country politics. In fact, in a study of US Latino immigrants, the Pew Hispanic Center reported that those who have been in the US for decades and those who arrived as children appear less attached than those who arrived more recently or migrated as adults.16 In fact, the study found that, among Latino immigrants, just one in ten could be considered highly attached to their country of origin. In this particular study, attachment was measured in terms of three “transnational activities,” specifically: sending remittances; weekly phone calls home; and travel to the native country in the previous two years. Therefore, for African countries such as Kenya, where the diaspora has recently experienced a surge in the numbers of migrants, relatively recent travelers are similarly expected to exhibit strong attachment to their native country. Because of the expansive nature of the policies migrants are subject to, scholars have identified four basic environmental dimensions as being particularly important for social transformation in the public setting.17 For example, Edward Seidman and Vivian Tseng discuss social intervention strategies, and highlight the following five approaches to effecting change: (1) reduction of inequity; (2) [aspiring to] utopian ideals; (3) professional development; (4) data analysis; and (5) regulation. Such and similar schemas are thus classified broadly into dimensions. Maton’s four are: instrumental, structural, relational, and cultural. He proposes that these environmental dimensions are the bases of the following transformational policy goals or effects: capacity building, group empowerment, relational community building, and culture challenge respectively. The classification is therefore helpful in organizing transformative policies according to goal-specific criteria—as depicted in Figure 5.3. All policy categories and statements in this discussion are selected for their association with these goals and are thus expected to be transformative policies. Dimensions of transformation in diaspora communities In the instrumental dimension, capacity-building emphasizes a participatory, self-help, assets-based approach to social transformation.18 These are policies that focus on citizens as valuable assets and self-determining agents—as opposed to focusing on their vices and deficiencies. Strengths-based policies direct resources to developing these strengths in the community. The policies assume that the mobilization of community or societal resources is the essential foundation for effective and lasting change.19 In the diaspora electoral environment, this translates into enfranchisement through, for example, legislative representation policies. Consequently strengths-based social policies in both home and host countries can help enhance diaspora communities’ resources and capacity to influence elections in their home countries.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 81 Within the structural dimension is the goal of group empowerment. While power and resources play central roles in shaping social institutions, Edward Sampson and Edward Seidman point out that there must be viable “opportunity mechanisms” that allow groups to shift the distribution of that power and those resources.20 Hence, Maton observes that enhancing the access of marginalized groups to economic, psychological, and political resources is central to transformative social change.21 What does this imply in the diaspora communities? Group empowerment is the prescribed and historical antidote for resolving discrepancies in distribution of power and resources within societies.22 Power struggles pit groups against each other—often divided along the lines of wealth and class. Consequently, diaspora communities must encounter policies that allow them to erect structural opportunities to boost their importance as an electoral constituency. For example, modern and effectively implemented communication policies are indispensable in facilitating cohesiveness among diaspora community members. Among other things, they allow for the international media and communication infrastructure to exist. These and other relevant structural dimension policies facilitate or encourage diaspora citizens to organize into groups of voters, as well as pool their human capital resources to improve their impact on decision making. The relational dimension’s goal is relational community building. This concept encompasses both intergroup and interpersonal interactions.23 Relational communities include voluntary associations, women’s and men’s groups, ethnicity-based groups, and so on. It is to be expected that social environments with strong bonds of cohesion, cooperation, trust, and mutual support are ideal for community building.24 Meanwhile, the media plays an important role in community building by positively portraying the common humanity of subgroups in society.25 In addition, enhancing intergroup contact through action coalitions, multicultural training, and public dialogue also enhances community building.26 Yet another strategy is the nurturing of representative leaders committed to the interests of the community rather than selfish personal interests. In African diaspora communities, relational community building means that diaspora citizens must transcend ethnic or familial ties in order to create a social environment that generates political potency. Ideally, members then go ahead and apply these relational considerations to home-country voting activities. In the electoral environment, policies that grow diaspora communities as well as garner support from external agents (regardless of their points of origin) are important transformative policies. Integration programs and mandates are examples of such policies. Finally, culture challenge is the goal of the cultural dimension of social transformation. Culture encompasses belief systems, values, norms, traditions, and practices. Many social problems are the result of cultural tendencies towards “other” denigration and self-absorption.27 Consequently, scholars concur that any serious effort to address social problems must be preceded by shifts in underlying norms, values, and practices in order for effective policy implementation and far-reaching innovations to be realized. Maton suggests that cultures can be

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

82

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

challenged into social transformation by facilitating alternative community settings and groups such as social action groups, political groups, intentional communities, and self-help groups. In addition, he recommends that activist social scientists should help citizens develop these alternative settings within their communities. These scholars can help dismantle disempowering practices by critically analyzing societies and cultures in order to stimulate science-based discussions on values and alternative paradigms.28 In the context of diaspora electoral politics, culture challenge is best facilitated in social environments that establish standards of critical social analysis, which inform public discourse and open up society to intergroup interactions.

Examining transformative policies: a Kenya case study Kenya and Senegal are currently the only countries in Africa that have constitutional mandates to facilitate diaspora voting. Hence, an empirical comparison of the two countries’ policies and diaspora citizens would be the best way to draw significant inferences on the electoral potentials of their two diaspora communities. However, surveys such as the AfroBarometer project indicate that Senegalese voters’ ethnic identity is not a significant determinant of voting behavior. In fact, ethnicity appears to play little or no role in politics in this country, which is more united around religion. About 94 percent of the population identify as Muslims.29 Consequently, Kenya provides the best opportunity at present to study diaspora electoral behavior in terms of ethnic voting. The political value of diaspora Kenyans certainly did not go unnoticed during the 2013 Kenyan elections. Presidential candidate Peter Kenneth is described as having conducted a “whirlwind” campaign tour across the United States.30 Even former Prime Minister Raila Odinga made campaign trips abroad. In fact, Jacob Ng’etich, a Kenya-based journalist, reports that nominated Member of Parliament (MP) Mohamed Affey said his party ODM Kenya was aware of the critical value of the overseas constituency created by the new Constitution. Meanwhile, in the same report, Foreign Affairs assistant minister Richard Onyonka stated that it would be an oversight for any politician to overlook the power of the diaspora, given the amount of money they remit home. In the same report, the Head of the Diaspora Department at the Foreign Affairs Ministry Maurice Okoth is quoted as having said that the 3 million registered and unregistered Kenyans in the diaspora had the “potential to tilt [the] election” if all of them voted in the 2013 election. Indeed, Kenya’s progress towards becoming a democratic state has been an uphill struggle since the nation gained independence in 1963. Initially governed by victorious freedom fighters, the nation succumbed relatively quickly to the authoritarian rule of President Daniel arap Moi whose ancien regime ruled the country for 26 years before the first multi-party elections in 1992.31 Among Moi’s tactics for staying in power were the legislative overrepresentations of the members of Kenya’s smallest and most spatially dispersed ethnic groups.32 As a result, opposition parties could not effectively run against the ruling party,

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 83 because it dominated in many constituencies where voters were loyal to the President. The call for constitutional reform came in 1995, and Moi was replaced by the nation’s third president Mwai Kibaki, in relatively peaceful elections in 2002. As part of the constitutional reform effort, dual-citizenship was introduced, and in the 2013 general elections there had been plans to allow diaspora voting. This would allow the estimated 2.5 million Kenyans living abroad—8 percent of the nation’s population—to have a say in the future of their native country.33 However, except for the Kenyans living in Eastern African nations, the rest of the diaspora was not accounted for in the 2013 elections. Could this be a harbinger of a return to Moi’s political tactics? Dr. Kefa Otiso, president of the Kenyan Students and Scholars Association based in Ohio, said that the decision to exclude diaspora voters was a sign of “a lack of respect.”34 Other Kenyans similarly view the matter as an affront and a slap in the face; and some diaspora Kenyans have taken steps to sue the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. Meanwhile, Justice Minister Eugene Wamalwa explained that the decision to exclude Kenyans outside Eastern African nations was due to the Commission’s logistical and financial constraints that impeded registration in time for the 2013 elections.35 However, Zenzo Moyo delved into the meaning of Chapter 7, Part 82 (1e) of the new Kenya constitution, which states that “parliament shall enact legislation to provide for the progressive registration of citizens residing outside Kenya, and the progressive realization of their right to vote.”36 In his view, the legislation actively curtails diaspora citizens’ right to vote by indicating that the realization of that right can be “postponed or mortgaged for the convenience of the state.”37 Indeed, the Kenya government’s explanation that financial and logistical impediments had caused the exclusions in the 2013 elections seems dubious. Despite the issue having been raised with renewed vigor as early as 2008, according to the Ministry of Finance budget documents for FY2008–2009 to 2012–2013, the Kenyan government did not explicitly set aside funds to finance diaspora voting. Meanwhile, it is worth noting that the World Bank reports that the Kenyan government’s International Jobs and Diaspora Directorate received a boost of US$500,000 on April 6, 2011 in Institutional Development Fund Grant monies to support the engagement of the Kenyan Diaspora in national development.38 This grant was intended to “support workshops, conferences and outreach efforts designed to elicit meaningful contributions from Kenyans in the global Diaspora,” said Mr. Okoth at the Foreign Affairs Ministry. It is not clear why the Kenyan government expects disenfranchised citizens to cooperate with any development efforts initiated by the same government that rebuffed them. Hence, because of these events, and specifically with regards to electoral politicking, it is important to understand whether Kenyans and Africans living abroad have generally predictable voting patterns comparable to those of their counterparts at home. In a forthcoming article, Beth Whitaker and Karen Okhoya-Inyanji conduct a preliminary statistical comparison of Kenyan diaspora voters in the United States and voters at home.39 In that study, the authors expect

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

84

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

that, if Kenyans abroad have similar voting habits to Kenyans at home, they will invite solicitations from politicians who will compete to attract their votes using the same techniques that are applied at home. However, if in migrating abroad diaspora Kenyans modify their voting habits, then they present a more challenging voting block to more politicians. Therefore, exclusion from the elections may be perceived as a preferred policy solution for those politicians who may not have the means to reach out to voters abroad. It may also be an attractive solution for those whose party platforms do not garner much support outside the country. Nevertheless, the effectiveness of such democracy-undermining policy tactics relies heavily on the degree to which Kenyan politicians are conversant with the characteristics and voting patterns of Kenyans abroad. Policy statement data The Kenyan policies accounted for in this chapter are extracted from the National Council for Law Reporting (Kenya Law) website. The relevant policies do not include constituent policies and competitive regulatory policies. Constituent policies are those that concern the composition and makeup of government in terms of structure, rules of conduct, and rules for power distribution. Competitive regulatory policies provide rules for industries and industrial operations and practices. I consider these two types of policies to be least pertinent to the social transformation of most diaspora Kenyans in their home country. The two categories are therefore excluded from the data. Meanwhile, policies under the broad umbrella of “treaties” are international agreements that Kenya has at least adopted, if not ratified. In this assessment, they include policies classified as agreements and amendments, annexes, charters, conventions, covenants, declarations, protocols, and treaties. These Kenyan laws are derived from a Kenya Law classification list that includes the Constitution, bills, and amendment acts. The Kenya Constitution proffers the following values in summary: We, the people of Kenya— Acknowledging the supremacy of the Almighty God of all creation: Honouring those who heroically struggled to bring freedom and justice to our land: Proud of our ethnic, cultural and religious diversity, [. . .] Recognizing the aspirations of all Kenyans for a government based on the essential values of human rights, equality, freedom, democracy, social justice and the rule of law: Exercising our sovereign and inalienable right to determine the form of governance of our country and having participated fully in the making of this Constitution: Adopt, Enact and give this Constitution to ourselves and to our future generations.40

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 85 In addition to a constitution established to facilitate democratic ideals, the following is a profile of Kenya’s potentially socially transformative public policies. As of 2012, there were nearly 650 socially transformative policy statements on record, and 627 of those were captured for this preliminary discussion. Based on the National Council for Law Reporting policy classification system, I have grouped the policies into seven categories of political and social policies that have direct consequences for citizens’ mobilization capacity, voter empowerment, community relations, and community resistance to culture-driven disempowerment practices.41 These policy categories are (1) civil law; (2) human development and humanitarianism; (3) security; (4) democracy and governance; (5) human rights; international relations and travel; and (7) labor rights. Table 5.1 depicts the full Table 5.1 Kenya government categories of treaties and laws (Kenya Law (NCLR)) Kenyan laws

International treaties

Constitutional Courts and officers of the court Civil law and procedure Bankruptcy and deeds of arrangement Public order and security Criminal law and procedure Evidence Police Prisons and detention of persons General administration Children Family law Succession—probate and administration Trustees Nationality—immigration Diplomatic and consular privileges The Civil Service Pensions and provident funds Defense Educational—cultural and social institutions Employment Public health and welfare Local government Land Mines and minerals Agriculture Water National parks, game, fisheries, and tourism Forests Ways and communications Public development authorities and institutions Guarantees International financial agreements

Agriculture Aviation and Outer Space Children Civil Aviation Democracy and Governance Development Diplomatic Relations Environment Environmental Conservation FAO and Environment Fisheries Human Rights ILO International Human Rights International Humanitarian Law International Relations Law of Treaties Laws of the Sea Maritime Private International Law Refugees Security Terrorism Trade and Commerce Weapons World Trade Organization

Note * Policies in bold are considered relevant to the social well-being or behavior of citizens.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

86

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

Kenya Law list of laws and treaties. Table 5.2 depicts a summary of the seven categories and their proportions relative to each other as socially transformative policies. These policies apply to all four ecologies depicted in Figure 5.2. That is to say they apply to individual citizens, diaspora communities, nation states, and the world. Meanwhile, the United States of America is a suitable host nation to include in the analysis of diaspora Kenyans. The United States has a relatively sizeable community of just over 100,000 Kenyan migrants, and the country is also similar to Kenya in its policymaking preferences by virtue of shared ideals in systems of government. The US Constitution preamble sets the tone for that nation’s policy thus: We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.42 Kenya is therefore not fundamentally different from the United States in terms of the apparent overarching ideology behind the nation’s policies. Yet Kenya still falls short of the democratic standards achieved so far in older democracies. Thus, it is important to remember that, unlike the United States, Kenya is still a transitional democracy. Consequently, its policymaking priorities vary from United States’ trends. Nevertheless, both countries have enough in common to allow a close classification of policies. The data on US transformative social policies is drawn from the US Office of the Law Revision Counsel, and is current through Public Law 113–100.43 For comparison purposes these policies are categorized in this study in a manner similar to the Kenyan policies. Yet because variation in citizen transformation naturally begins at the microlevel, associating policies with behavior modification in citizens requires a mixed-methods approach. This means accounting for policy effect in its local implementation context while eliciting citizens’ personal information through surveys, questionnaires, or interviews. Hence, the question mark in Figure 5.1 represents a highly complex and dynamic social environment in which individuals and communities respond to different stimuli prior to their transformation and change in voting behavior. For instance, the policy classification indicated in Table 5.2 reflects policies that affect the social well-being of Kenyans at home and abroad. Meanwhile, we are reminded that times have changed for the Kenya diaspora. While political activism was an important factor in Kenyans’ migration in the 1990s, “now, folks are focused on economic empowerment, students want to do well in school, graduate and get better jobs, and workers want a better life after retirement.”44 This view is reflected in the agenda of the 2013 Kenya Diaspora Conference in the United States. The conference’s proposed issues for discussion and review were: political and economic development, and investment opportunities; strengthening the role and

Socially transformative laws on civil law and procedure; family law public health and welfare; educational—cultural and social criminal law and procedure; prisons and detention of persons; public order and security; police; defense constitution; the civil service guarantees; immigration; nationality employment

Socially-transformative treaties on

Civil law

Human development and humanitarianism

Security

Democracy and governance

Human rights

International relations and travel

Labor

Group #

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

Table 5.2 Seven categories of socially transformative policies

group empowerment capacity building

capacity building relational community building

group empowerment culture challenge

culture challenge capacity building

group empowerment culture challenge

relational community building culture challenge

group empowerment cultural challenge

Policy effects

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

instrumental structural

instrumental relational

structural cultural

structural instrumental

structural cultural

relational cultural

structural cultural

Policy dimension

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

contribution of the diaspora community in Kenya’s political and governance development; and the community life, arts, drama, and song that celebrate Kenyans and “Kenyanness,” among other issues.45 It is important to note that this study’s policy comparison is based on nominal levels of measurement. Therefore, the numbers of policies are not as important as their relative proportions in each setting, and the differences between those proportions. The policy proportions by subject area depicted in Figures 5.5 and 5.6 indicate the relative percentages of each policy category. The country bar graphs portray the numbers of pieces of legislation passed in each category through 2012 in Kenya, and by 2013 in the United States. In all but one of the policy categories—that is labor—the two countries are within about 10 percentage points of each other in terms of the volume of legislation passed in each category. Kenya, however, appears to have passed a higher percentage of pieces of legislation on democracy and governance than the United States. This is to be expected, as the new Kenya Constitution (2010) called for devolution of the government from provincial administration into county governments. Meanwhile, the United States has passed 10 percent more human development and humanitarian legislation than Kenya has. What do these values mean? Using Infotrak Kenya’s 2012 opinion poll data, I also assessed policy categories in terms of their relative importance to in-country citizens and diaspora citizens. Here, all but two categories show greater than ten percentage-point differences between in-country citizens and diaspora citizens. In addition, the emphasis on democracy and governance is 44 percent higher among diaspora citizens than in-country citizens. Diaspora citizens also have an 18 percent lead on in-country citizens in their labor concerns. On the other hand, there is little to no interest in international relations and travel policies; the diaspora citizens face Relative proportions of policy categories (%)

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

88

40 35

Kenya US

30 25 20 15 10 5 0

1

2

3

4 Policy categories

5

6

7

Figure 5.5 Kenya government categories of treaties and laws (Kenya Law (NCLR)).

Relative proportions of policy categories (%)

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 89 60 50

In-country Diaspora

40 30 20 10 0

1

2

3 4 5 Kenyan concerns by policy categories

6

7

Figure 5.6 Seven categories of socially transformative policies.

little or no impediments to travel to their home countries, and in-country citizens are not affected by immigration rules and regulations. Nevertheless, such a category is important because it is the treaties and agreements between Kenya and the United States, and within the international community in general, that facilitate the travel and settlement of migrants. Furthermore, unlike policies on diplomatic relations, which tend to revolve around administrative elites and political leaders, international laws on immigration are policies that are actually felt by citizens. Examples of the tangible policy outputs are visas, residency permits, employment opportunities, educational pursuits, and social security benefits. Nevertheless, a shortcoming of restricting my preliminary review of policies to written statements means that I do not capture the nuances of de facto policy implementation—that is, the difference between what is stipulated by law, and the reality of what actually happens.

Identifying policy-driven transformation in voting behavior Policies can have either a direct or an indirect influence on social transformation. Direct policy effects are those that are, for instance, targeted at travel among migrants. They are spelled out in immigration policy statements. On the other hand, indirect policy effects are those that can alter beliefs and values and, for example, stimulate transnational behavior through the development of multicultural attitudes. For instance, even though integration and education policies may force people to interact and learn about each other, tolerance or acceptance develops uniquely in each individual. African political interests and stakeholders must therefore understand the different effects that policies can have on diaspora

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

90

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

citizens. Policies can transform diaspora voters into independent political agents, or allow them to remain heavily influenced by home-country pressures and informational cues.46 In surveying a representative sample of diaspora citizens, one must first determine what these citizens are primarily concerned with and what issues are salient among them at any given time. Is it economic empowerment, socio-political sanctuary, cultural exposure, or all of these? The diaspora preferences are then compared and contrasted with in-country citizens’ preferences. If there are marked patterns or discrepancies, the natural question is: What is causing these patterns and discrepancies? More precisely here: What policies could be causing these patterns and discrepancies? As in the Kenya example, Shamlal Puri believes that private sector-led capacity building will benefit the whole nation, because she perceives both diaspora and in-country citizens are primarily concerned with matters pertaining to economic empowerment, educational achievements, and social upward mobility. To be clear, Kenyans abroad are yet to be studied in a comprehensive demographic and political assessment that would help analysts generate a profile of the average diaspora Kenyan.47 Nevertheless, Puri’s views are not improbable and can form the basis of a social transformation assessment at the individual level. Establishing diaspora citizens’ concerns naturally necessitates the creation of a policy classification system. My review of the policy categories of Kenya and of the United States reveals that the categories are similar enough to be grouped into generally homogeneous areas of policy interest. Then, one considers both the home-country and host-country contexts from at least two perspectives: (1) policy emphases in either nation; and (2) policy emphases in both nations compared to each other. This determines whether there are any notable trends in the passing of legislation in either country; and whether there are any patterns or discrepancies between the two nations. If data points at the country level seem to correlate or interact with the individual-level policy concerns, it may indicate a relationship between these specific policies and citizens’ concerns. The next level in the inquiry involves understanding the contextual nuances of policy adoption and implementation. After narrowing down to specific policy categories of interest, one seeks to understand whether there have been any events or phenomena that have caused the creation of new policies or modifications of old ones. Has anything occurred that may trigger heightened or diminished interest among citizens? Who proposed the policies and what were their interests? Who is affected? What have the outcomes of the policies been? Such questions apply in both the home- and host-country settings. It is important to remember that the data points in this level of analysis only serve to reveal outliers and patterns. The sheer numbers of policy statements published in any category is not important as that is determined by contextual circumstances. Furthermore, because the data points (as in Figures 5.5 and 5.6) represent all laws and treaties in the two countries, their changes can be tracked over long periods of time (years) in order to see if temporal fluctuations are part of the policy effects. Nevertheless, the outliers and patterns must be relatable to real world events and occurrences. In fact, each short-listed

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 91 policy category should be inspected discretely for any noteworthy trends in both the country-level and individual-level data. Finally, one seeks to empirically relate the policies to behavioral change, and ethnic voting in Africa’s context. At the individual level, citizen surveys of diaspora citizens not only reveal what their concerns are, but also tried and tested methods of questioning can extract each respondent’s behavioral triggers or stimuli. For example, assume that Kenyans abroad are concerned about health services because they are motivated by quality of life issues. Legislation in a host-country that limits their access to coverage can be cited directly in a survey/ questionnaire. On the other hand, in circumstances of heightened suspicion and mistrust or ignorance, demographic and socio-economic status data can be used to reveal whether the respondent is a policy victim or policy beneficiary. In either case, upon generating the individual level variables, one may apply statistical tools to identify significant variables at both the individual and country levels through techniques involving structured data and multivariate analysis.

Selecting an analytical approach The choice of analytical approach in correlating policy trends with voting behavior is contingent upon research goals. For example, an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) can be used to scale a research topic, especially in studies that call for a relatively large set of measured variables. In this assessment, measured variables are any of several attributes of policies that can be observed and gauged. In reference to this chapter’s country illustration, if it is determined that increased terrorist attacks in Kenya lead the United States to impose more restrictions on travel between the two countries, how would diaspora Kenyans perceive the new policies? They may raise questions on: socioeconomic consequences for travelers; (in)equity in treatment of different nationals whose countries have terrorist entanglements; policy effectiveness in thwarting terrorist attacks; and so on. If citizens are asked in a survey to rank the travel policy according to each of these concerns and based on their own subjective perceptions, then the policy (travel restrictions) in this case has at least three factors— socioeconomic outcomes, equity standards, and policy effectiveness. If this is repeated for each policy or policy group, the EFA reveals the underlying structure and relationships in the associated sets of variables. As is the case in this exploratory study, the EFA is used when the researcher has no presuppositions or hypotheses about factors or patterns of measured variables. The guidelines on the number of variables to use can be derived through the Kaiser–Guttman rule, the scree test, percentage of variance, and the sizes of the residuals.48 Further, the suitability of this analysis is due to the fact that the EFA is based on common factor modeling. Scott Armstrong explains that, within the common factor model, a function of common factors, unique factors, and errors of measurement expresses measured variables.49 Common factors influence two or more measured variables, while each unique factor influences only one measured variable. Thus, in terms of transformative policies, an analyst

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

92

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

can derive the underlying factorial nuances for her established policies or policy groupings using a preliminary EFA. However, this step does not provide information on the relationships between variables. An EFA could be followed by a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). A CFA is used to test whether the constructs identified through measured variables in the EFA are consistent with one’s understanding of the nature of those constructs or the policies themselves. In other words, the objective of CFA is to test whether the data fit a hypothesized measurement model, which is based on theory and/or previous analytic research.50 Thus, in the case of Kenya and the United States, I may suspect that governance policies and labor policies in both countries are two variables that account for a significant difference between voting preferences among in-country citizens and diaspora citizens. I may also believe that these policies or variables are unrelated to one another. It is important for me to verify my non-correlation expectation and obtain model fit measures in order to assess how well the model captures the covariance between all the variables within it. If inconsistencies arise, the model is rejected because some unique factors may be measuring multiple variables. Alternatively, some factors within one policy may be more related to each other than they are to other variables. It is nevertheless important to note that there is no single set method to conduct an EFA. Criteria for technique selection include the objective of the analysis, and the assumptions about the variance of the variables.51 Figure 5.7 nevertheless summarizes the refined causal path of a transformative policy study model based on the prescriptions I have derived from the literature (compare to Figure 5.1). Ultimately, the multivariate regression analysis that is applied in a multilevel model with ethnic voting behavior as the dependent variable is expected to reveal the significant determinants of diaspora voting behavior. The premise of the supposition is that, controlling for individual-level variables, policy is a significant determinant of ethnic voting. Notable elements of this assessment’s analytical approach are that it accounts for two countries at a time; and the country-level variables are single policies or policy groupings. These are used in conjunction with a larger set of individuallevel variables due to the inevitability of a much larger sample size among respondents. Consequently, the regression model in this study is summarized as follows:

POLICY/ POLICIES

Exposure

Policy effect and contingent (control) factors

MODIFIED VOTING BEHAVIOR

Figure 5.7 Modifying diaspora voting through policy-driven behavioral transformation.

Transformative effects of policy 93 If these two equations reflect policies P and P2 in country j, α and β are the factors measured through P1 and P2 respectively. Thus:

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

1

where i = respondent, and j = country; Y is a regressand reflecting ethnic voting behavior; P represents the set of policies of interest; and C is the vector for individual-level variables including demographic factors, geographic location, social (diaspora)-network affiliations, level of contact with the home country, media exposure, and so on. The results of the analysis should reveal the policies that affect citizens’ voting behavior by transforming them socially in terms of the way they perceive their ethnic identities and home-country politics—an effect which ultimately leads to the voting behavior established in Y. Precisely how this transformation occurs can be determined by consulting the categories of policy effects as presented earlier in this chapter (also see Figure 5.3), and relating them to the significant policies. Accounting for the context of the policy or policies also lends credence to the inferences. Hence, the final analytical product can enlighten policymakers and diaspora citizens themselves on citizens’ primary concerns as well as the nature of their political agency abroad. For example, if a labor policy abroad is identified as a significant transformative policy, the overall effects may be to shape elections by boosting candidates with labor ideals that are similar to those the diaspora voters acquired. For example, if the United States institutes a year-long paid-leave mandate for pregnant women and Kenyan diaspora voters are afforded the same benefits, their expectations regarding labor rights may very well be altered to favor systems such as that which they have witnessed in the United States. As a result, a Kenyan politician advocating for similar measures at home will probably resonate more with the diaspora voters—if the latter have indeed overcome their tendency towards ethnic voting. Also, because we know that this is a policy that falls within the capacity-building dimension, interested parties aware of this can take heed and engage the diaspora constituency along this and other empirically identified avenues of interest. Another way to look at the effect is as follows: There are certainly benefits to pregnant women taking time away from work to look after themselves and their infants. It is an instrumental and structural policy in its effect, which enhances citizens’ well-being and resources. If Kenyans in the United States are also beneficiaries of this policy, not only will they appreciate it in the United States, but their political activities in Kenya may also lead them to favor (women) candidates who tend to support policies oriented towards improving the lives of families and children. This is to say that the diaspora Kenyans may have become less likely to vote purely on the grounds of ethnic associations, because they have learned that there are means by with governments can remedy inequity and poverty through progressive policies. For politicians who are not aware of these transformative happenings within a Diasporic community, the phasing out of the ethnic voting behavior among the transformed citizens is entirely overlooked.

94

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Conclusion For Africans exposed to life in advanced democracies, policies instituted both at home and abroad have the potential to alter their political thinking and ultimately their voting behavior. As projects such as DEMIG have demonstrated, it is possible to classify the many policies that affect citizenship in both the sending and receiving countries. Nevertheless, the policy classification used in this discussion does not account for policies of inaction or even symbolic policies. In other words, it does not capture policies that are not recorded in legislation or court rulings, but are instead artifacts of interpersonal behavior or community relations. For example, because of historical ties, policies among friends and allies may be communicated in the realm of “implicit understandings,” and therefore may not necessarily translate into published policy statements that can be counted as influencing diaspora citizens’ behavior. Nevertheless, I expect such policies to largely fall within diplomatic or administrative parameters. As this area of policy and electoral politics is still under-investigated, future studies should attempt to further improve the policy classification process and analytical techniques. Capturing the actual impact of the policies of interest would also enrich the study. After all, policy exposure and the intensity of that exposure affect the probability of a transformative outcome. In addition, as scholars lament over the lack of a comprehensive census of diaspora citizens (at least in Kenya), the rapidly increasing importance of this constituency means that country governments, academics, and/or stakeholders among nongovernmental entities should work to remedy the situation. It is worthwhile to generate and update the profiles of Africans abroad in order to better understand the diaspora’s political dynamics. Finally, studies on the relationship between transformative policies and ethnic voting should expand to include comparisons with other peoples and nations that accommodate diaspora voting, even as African nations continue to grow in democratic principles and electoral sophistication.

Notes 1 Beth E. Whitaker, “The Politics of Home: Dual Citizenship and the African Diaspora,” International Migration Review, 45, no. 5 (2011): 755–783. 2 Caroline B. Brettell and James F. Hollifield (eds.), Migration Theory: Talking Across the Disciplines (New York: Routledge, 2013). 3 George R. Andrews, “Afro-world: African-diaspora Thought and Practice in Montevideo, Uruguay, 1830–2000,” The Americas, 67, no. 1 (2010): 83–107; Patrick Manning, The African Diaspora: A History Through Culture (New York: Columbia University Press, 2013); and Paul T. Zeleza, “African Diasporas: Toward a Global History,” African Studies Review, 53, no. 1 (2010): 1–19. 4 Paul T. Zeleza, “African Diasporas and Academics: The Struggle for a Global Epistemic Presence,” in Paul T. Zeleza (ed.), The Study of Africa: Global and Transnational Engagements (Dakar: Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa, 2007), 86. 5 Adeolu Ademoyo, “The Ontological Imperative for the New African Diaspora,” in Isidore Okpekwo and Nkiru Nzegwu (eds.), The New African Diaspora, (Bloomington:

Transformative effects of policy 95

6

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

7

8 9 10 11 12 13 14

15

16 17

18

19 20

Indiana University Press, 2009), 500; Obiora Okafor, “Socio-legal Barriers to the Full Citizenship of Recent African Immigrants in Canada: Some Preliminary Thoughts,” in Okpekwo and Nzegwu (eds.), The New African Diaspora (2009), 183; and Zeleza, “African Diasporas” 2010. William Safran, “Diasporas in Modern Societies: Myths of Homeland and Return,” Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 1, no. 1 (1991): 83–99. Sharon S. Russell, International Migration: Implications for the World Bank, (Washington, DC: World Bank, 1995); Heinz de Haas, Migration and Development: A Theoretical Perspective (University of Oxford, International Migration Institute: Working paper no. 9, 2008); and Akin L. Mabongunje, “Systems Approach to a Theory of Rural–Urban Migration,” Geographical Analysis, 2, no. 1 (1970): 1–18. de Haas, “Migration and Development,” 2008. Kenneth I. Maton, “Making a Difference: The Social Ecology of Social Transformation,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 28, no. 1 (2000): 28. Jan Fidrmuc and Orla Doyle, Voice of the Diaspora: An Analysis of Migrant Voting Behavior (ZEI: Working paper no. B 02-2005, 2005). Maton, “Making a Difference” (2000). Edison J. Trickett, “A Future for Community Psychology: The Contexts of Diversity and the Diversity of Contexts,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 24, no. 2 (1996): 209–235. Steve D. Edwards, “Evaluating Models of Community Psychology: Social Transformation in South Africa,” International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 9, no. 4 (2002): 305. Donald F. Kettl, The Transformation of Governance: Public Administration for Twenty-First-Century America (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002); Janet V. Denhardt and Robert B. Denhardt, The New Public Service: Serving, Not Steering (Armonk: M. E. Sharpe, 2007); and Richard C. Box, Gary S. Marshall, B. J. Reed, and Christine M. Reed, “New Public Management and Substantive Democracy,” Public Administration Review, 61, no. 5 (2001): 608–619. In fact, in a multilevel analysis, the expansive scope of individual level variables helps offset the statistical impediments that emerge in studies with small aggregatelevel sample sizes. See Daniel Stegmueller, “How Many Countries for Multilevel Modeling? A Comparison of Frequentist and Bayesian Approaches,” American Journal of Political Science, 57, no. 3 (2013): 748–761. Roger Waldinger, “Between Here and There: How Attached Are Latino Immigrants to Their Native Country?” October 25, 2007, retrieved December 12, 2013, from: www.pewhispanic.org/files/reports/80.pdf. Maton, “Making a Difference,” 2000; Rudolf H. Moos, “Development and Application of New Measures of Life Stressors, Social Resources, and Coping Responses,” European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 11, no. 1 (1995): 1–13; and Edward Seidman and Vivian Tseng, “Changing Social Settings: Framework for Action,” in James G. Kelly (ed.), Empowering Settings and Voices for Social Change (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), 17. Jnanabrata Bhattacharya, “Theorizing Community Development,” Community Development, 34, no. 2 (2004): 5–34; and John P. Kretzman and John L. McKnight, Building Communities from the Inside Out: A Path Towards Finding and Mobilizing a Community’s Assets (Evanston: Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research, Northwestern University, 1993). Maton, “Making a Difference,” 2000. Edward E. Sampson, Dealing with Differences: An Introduction to the Social Psychology of Prejudice (New York: Harcourt Brace College Publishers, 1999); and Edward Seidman, “Back to the Future, Community Psychology: Unfolding a Theory of Social Intervention,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 16, no. 1 (1988): 3–24.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

96

K. Okhoya-Inyanji

21 Maton, “Making a Difference,” 2000: 33. 22 Edward Seidman, “Back to the Future,” 1988; and Marc A. Zimmerman and Julian Rappaport, “Citizen Participation, Perceived Control, and Psychological Empowerment,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 16, no. 5 (1988): 725–750. 23 Moos, “Development and Application of New Measures of Life Stressors,” (1995); Stephanie Riger, “What’s Wrong with Empowerment?” American Journal of Community Psychology, 21, no. 3 (1993): 279–292. 24 Kenneth I. Maton, “Empowering Community Settings: Agents of Individual Development, Community Betterment, and Positive Social Change,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 41, no. 1–2 (2008): 4–21. 25 A. Davis, K. Maton, K. Humphreys, T. Moore, and M. Wilson, “Setting the Record Straight: Towards more Positive Portrayals of African Americans,” The Community Psychologist, 31, no. 3 (1998): 14–18. 26 M. Bond, “Gender, Race and Class in Organizational Contexts,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 27, no. 3 (1999): 327–355. 27 Maton, “Making a Difference,” 2000: 39. 28 Todd S. Sloan, Damaged Life: The Crisis of the Modern Psyche (East Sussex: Psychology Press, 1996). 29 Mwangi Kimenyi and Zenia Lewis, February 10, 2012, comment on “Senegal’s Electoral Institutions and Prospects for Democracy,” The Up Front Blog, February 4, 2014, www.brookings.edu/blogs/up-front/posts/2012/02/10-senegal-halls. 30 Jacob Ng’etich, “Kenya: Politicians Set Sights on Diaspora Vote,” AllAfrica.com, September 9, 2011, retrieved from: http://allafrica.com/stories/201109100009. html?page=2. 31 Njuguna Ng’ethe and Joel D. Barkan, “Kenya Tries Again,” Journal of Democracy, 9, no. 2 (1998): 32. 32 Ng’ethe and Barkan, “Kenya Tries Again,” 1998: 35. 33 World Bank, “World Bank Grant to Mobilize Kenya’s Diaspora for Development,” April 19, 2011, retrieved January 15, 2014, from: http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/ EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/AFRICAEXT/EXTDIASPORA/0,,contentMDK:228937 97~menuPK:4246156~pagePK:64168445~piPK:64168309~theSitePK:4246098,00. html. 34 Voice of America, “Diaspora Kenyans Unable to vote Abroad, Feel Cheated,” March 2, 2013, retrieved January 15, 2014, from: www.voanews.com/content/diasporakenyans-unable-to-vote-feel-cheated/1613866.html. 35 Aggrey Mutambo and Antony Karanja, “Kenyans Abroad Sue Over Voter Listing Rights,” Daily Nation, November 28, 2012, retrieved December 12, 2013, from: www.nation.co.ke/News/politics/IEBC-to-make-final-decision-on-Diaspora-voting/-/ 1064/1631056/-/wqa8wo/-/index.html. 36 Zenzo Moyo, “The Right to Vote: Where do Citizens in the Diaspora Stand?” April 2, 2013, retrieved December 12, 2013, from: www.consultancyafrica.com/index. php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1265:the-right-to-vote-where-do-citizensin-the-diaspora-stand-part-2-&catid=91:rights-in-focus&Itemid=296. 37 Moyo, “The Right to Vote,” 2013: 16. 38 World Bank, “World Bank Grant to Mobilize Kenya’s Diaspora for Development,” (2011). 39 Beth Whitaker and Karen Okhoya-Inyanji, “The Politics of Living Abroad: Exploring the Impact of International Migration on Ethnic Identification,” (forthcoming). 40 National Council of Law Reporting, “Laws of Kenya: The Constitution of Kenya,” 2010, retrieved from www.kenyalaw.org:8181/exist/kenyalex/actiview.xql?actid= Const2010. 41 The Oxford University DEMIG data set is a much more extensive illustration of how policies can be identified and classified for empirical analysis. The data set includes immigration policies from several countries around the world.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Transformative effects of policy 97 42 United States National Archives and Records Administration, “The Constitution of the United States: A Transcription,” 1789, retrieved from www.archives.gov/exhibits/ charters/constitution_transcripts.html. 43 United States Office of the Law Revision Counsel, “United States Code (Current through Public Law 113–100),” 2014, retrieved from: http://uscode.house.gov/download/download.shtml. 44 Shamlal Puri, “Diaspora Expert Tells Problems Kenyans Abroad Face,” Standard Digital News, September 15, 2013, retrieved January 9, 2014, from: www.standardmedia.co.ke/lifestyle/article/2000093566/the-money-is-good-but-home-is-best. 45 Based on Kenya Embassy senior management staff reviews and participant feedback from the 2011 and 2012 conferences. 46 Fidrmuc and Doyle, Voice of the Diaspora, (2005). 47 Kefa Otiso, “Kenyans in the Diaspora are the Fifth Largest County; Ignore Them at Your Peril,” Daily Nation, June 2, 2013, retrieved December 12, 2013, from: www. nation.co.ke/oped/Opinion/Ignore-Kenyans-in-the-diaspora-at-your-peril/-/440808/18 70222/-/ek2n8tz/-/index.html. 48 Also see Preacher, Zhang, Kim, and Mels on “Choosing the Optimal Number of Factors in Exploratory Factor Analysis,” Multivariate Behavioral Research Journal, 48, no. 1 (2013): 28–56. 49 Scott J. Armstrong, “Illusions in Regression Analysis,” International Journal of Forecasting, 28, no. 3 (2012): 689–694. 50 Karl G. Jöreskog, “A General Approach to Confirmatory Maximum Likelihood Factor Analysis,” Psychometrika, 34, no. 2 (1969): 183–202. 51 Institute for Digital Research and Education, “Factor Analysis Using SAS PROC FACTOR,” retrieved January 15, 2014, from: www.ats.ucla.edu/stat/sas/library/ factor_ut.htm.

6

Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to the United States

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Joseph O. Akinbi

Introduction Although human migration is a worldwide historical phenomenon, the twenty-first century migration of Nigerian immigrants (professionals, skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled workers) to the United States has been unprecedented. Generally, African countries have experienced diverse international migration flows from both within and outside the continent. The new flow of immigrants from Nigeria in particular, and Africa in general, into the US is a growing component of the US population.1 In fact, they constitute the racial and ethnic transformation of the United States in the twenty-first century. From the beginning of the new millennium, African immigrants have grown at a rapid rate in the US. The American Community Survey data shows that the largest percentages of African immigrants hail from West Africa. According to data from 2008 to 2012, 36 percent of the African immigrant population came from West Africa while 29 percent and 17 percent came from East and North Africa, respectively.2 Nigeria continues to remain the top sending country. In 2007, the population of Nigerian immigrants was 156,182.3 Some of the major factors responsible for the growing contemporary migration of intellectuals, scholars, entrepreneurs, and professionals from Nigeria have been identified as globalization and integration of the world economy, economic and political development failures in Nigeria, and the immigration and refugee policies of the developed countries. More fundamentally, the US immigration laws enacted over the last few years have opened new avenues for immigrants, especially from Africa. It is against this backdrop that this chapter interrogates the increase in the number of the Nigerian Diaspora in the US during the era of new globalization, especially since the 1990s.

Defining the African Diaspora in the United States Diasporas have been defined by the US State Department as migrant groups that share a number of attributes that include the following: •

dispersion, whether voluntary or involuntary, across socio-cultural boundaries and at least one political border;

Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to US • • •

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017



99

a collective memory and myth about the homeland; a commitment to keeping the homeland alive through symbolic and direct action; the presence of the issue of return, although not necessarily a commitment to do so; and a consciousness and associated identity, expressed in Diaspora community media, the creation of Diaspora associations or organizations, and online participation.4

The African Union defines its Diaspora as consisting of people of African origin living outside the continent, irrespective of their citizenship and nationality and who are willing to contribute to the development of the continent and the building of the African Union.5 In essence, the emergence of the African Diaspora stems from the migration of Africans to locations throughout the world, but especially the Americas and Europe. The African Diaspora in the United States is essentially a product of two main waves of migrations from Africa. The first was the involuntary migrations brought about by the Atlantic Slave trade that have produced the black population in the United States known today as African Americans. In other parts of the Americas such as Brazil and Cuba, the descendents of Africans are known as Afro-Brazilians and Afro-Cubans respectively. The second wave of migrations from Africa, which is contemporaneous, was voluntary. Beginning in the post-Second World War period, this voluntary immigration has increased significantly since the 1990s. The new immigrants have been mostly motivated by the expectation of a better life abroad, given the downward economic trend in their home countries.6 What has further led to a progressive increase in immigration from Africa to the United States was the new Immigration Act passed in 1965.

Nigerian migration: an overview International migration, which is widely perceived to be on the rise, has now been recognized as an important mechanism for new globalization. D. S. Massey, for instance, has divided the modern history of international migration into four distinctive periods, namely the mercantile period, 1500 to 1800; the industrial period, which began early in the nineteenth century; the period from 1800 to 1929, which represents the first period of economic globalization and was characterized by massive flows of capital, raw materials, and goods; and the period of post-industrial migration which emerged during the middle 1960s, popularly known as the era of new globalization.7 This view of Massey’s shows that international migration, which deals with the movement of people across boundaries, dates back to the period of the transatlantic slave trade, which involved a large number of Africans. Okon E. Uya argues that West Africa supplied the highest number of African slaves to the New World, with Nigeria and Ghana topping the list.8

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

100

J. O. Akinbi

The 1960s had relaxed immigration policies due to a shortage of labor for industrial development. This development has resulted in an increase in the emergence of international labor migration.9 According to the United Nations, the number of individuals living outside their country of birth increased from 154 to 190 million, reaching a level equivalent to 3 percent of the world’s population.10 David Shinn has divided receiving-country immigration policies into three basic categories: those affecting labor migrants, those affecting refugees, and those affecting permanent residents (which may include former labor migrants and refugees).11 In the United States, a 1965 law, referred to as the Hart Cellar Act, loosened restrictions on immigration based on geography (immigration of non-whites had previously been limited). It also instituted policies that emphasized family reunification and professional qualifications. The new law introduced labor certificates and occupational preferences that favored immigrants with the desired skills, regardless of origin. Another notable change was allowing US-born children of foreigners to file petitions for the legal admission of their parents. Foreigners who had children in the United States while on student or work visas, for example, could apply for legal permanent residence through their young children.12 In addition to the 1965 Act, several other revisions of immigration laws fostered increased international immigration from Africa, the Caribbean and other countries. For instance, the Immigration and Nationality Act Amendments of October 20, 1976 made it easier for foreigners to obtain visas to study, reunite with family, or market their skills.13 The Refugee Act of March 17, 1980, fundamentally changed US refugee policy to conform to the UN protocol on refugees and provided for 500,000 visas annually. This deflected the emphasis from admitting only refugees from the communist countries that the United States had opposed in the Cold War, and initiated flows from the horn of Africa (especially Somalia, Ethiopia, and Eritrea), where civil and international conflicts were displacing thousands of people. Cuba and Haiti were the main sources of refugees in the Western Hemisphere, as residents fled repressive communist or dictatorial regimes.14 The 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) made it possible for undocumented immigrants living in the United States to apply for legal status. Some 35,000 sub-Saharan Africans and 100,000 residents from the Englishspeaking Caribbean obtained legal status through IRCA.15 The 1990 Immigration Act increased the number of immigrants admitted on the basis of skills for US jobs. It introduced the diversity visa lottery to admit immigrants from countries that were not well represented among the US immigrant population. Although originally envisaged as a way to bring in more Europeans, such as the Irish, who did not have close relatives in the United States who could sponsor them, the diversity visa was a boon for Africans who wanted to immigrate. Between 1998 and 2006, sub-Saharan Africans received 27 percent of the diversity visas awarded by the United States, with the greatest number going to immigrants from Nigeria.16

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to US

101

Fundamentally, Nigeria remains one of the major countries in Africa to be increasingly involved in international migration worldwide. This can be seen from the growing number of its people who migrate yearly, in comparison with those from other African countries. The international migration of Nigerian peoples can be dated back to the pre-colonial period. It effectively began with the Hausa transnational links that found their best expression in the transSaharan trade, especially between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries. This period also witnessed pilgrimages to Mecca and Medina.17 The mass movement of Nigerian peoples was, however, accelerated during the transatlantic slave trade. This development marked a significant milestone in the forced movement of Nigerians to the New World.18 The colonial era equally witnessed large-scale labor migration, required for plantations, mines, and public administration, from Nigeria to such countries as Cameroon, Sierra Leone, Guinea, the Benin Republic, and Ghana.19 In the post colonial period, especially after independence in 1960, the trend changed positively owing to the quest for education and the desire to find greener pastures among other factors.20 In fact, the economic downturn in the country in the early 1980s due to the collapse of crude oil prices alongside sustained political repression and violence appears to have exacerbated the exodus of Nigerians abroad.21 Since the 1980s, the waves of migration to Anglo-Saxon countries have been complemented by the remarkable movements of Nigerians to Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Ireland and the Gulf States. Within Africa, Nigerians have increasingly emigrated to countries such as Gabon, Botswana and South Africa.22 According to Aderanti Adepoju, some highly skilled Nigerian migrants have even found the booming economy of South Africa a convenient alternative to the United States of America, Europe and the Gulf States.23 The increase in the size of the Nigerian Diaspora in the United States, due to the search for greener pastures in particular, is critically analyzed in the next section.

Migrations of Nigerians to the United States since 1990 The search for greener pastures in the United States by the Nigerians from 1990 was facilitated by the favorable US Immigration Act of 1990. This encouraged international labor migration admitted on the basis of skills for US jobs. With the introduction and implementation of this Immigration Act, the number of African immigrants, especially those that are skilled, has been increasing yearly. According to Sola Akinrinade and Aderemi Ajibewa, more than one-fifth of recent African legal immigrants entered with diversity visas.24 The growing number of African intellectuals and professionals that have continued to join the stream of international migration away from the continent (and not just from the country of birth) cannot be overemphasized. Aside from the factor of the relaxation of the immigration policy of the United States, push and pull factors have contributed immensely to this growing trend. While a large majority of the Nigerian Diaspora left the country due to the low probability of

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

102

J. O. Akinbi

gainful employment, mainly through the visa lottery to the United States where there were more opportunities to find some sort of job, others who were highly skilled and professionals in their different fields left due to poor salaries and working conditions. Over the past few years, this development has made the United States a major center of attraction for international labor migration.25 Akanmu Adebayo argues that, although the international migration of the Nigerian Diaspora has been attributed to several reasons, such as labor mobility caused by new globalization, the influx of highly skilled professional Nigerians who migrated to the United States in particular was due to poor working conditions in Nigeria. He further emphasized that they preferred to migrate because developed countries could pay for and utilize their competitive skills.26 Adebayo buttressed his argument by analyzing the salaries being paid to professors in Nigeria in comparison to those in other countries. According to him, in a 2007 survey conducted by the National Universities Commission, it was found that a full professor in Botswana earned $27,000 per annum, in Namibia between $21,000 and $35,000, and in South Africa between $58,000 and $75,000, while in Nigeria, even with all the adjustments that the Academic Staff Union of Universities was able to negotiate back then, a full professor still earned only about $12,000 per annum in 2006. This monetary discrepancy is one of the major reasons why many professors decided to migrate. There have been conflicting official figures and unofficial estimates of the Nigerian Diaspora in the United States. But the Migration Policy Institute provides the following reliable figures: 1 2 3 4

2000: 162,938 2012: 252,000 2013: 299,310 2015: 376,000.27

Since the beginning of the twentieth century, a new wave of international migration has drained a large number of professionals from Nigeria’s higher educational institutions such as universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, and research centers. Also affected are teaching hospitals, to the extent that many now go without medical specialists and consultants.

Conclusion This chapter has shown that the search for greener pastures abroad has contributed greatly to the influx of Nigerians to the United States, especially since the 1990s. This international migration has been dependent on fundamental factors, including the relaxation of US immigration policies, the phenomenon of new globalization, and push and pull factors, among others. Despite the fact that the Nigerian Diaspora is contributing to the development of their home country through remittances, the flight of professionals and skilled people from the country has serious implications for its economic growth. As pointed out by

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Contemporary migrations of Nigerians to US

103

Gilbert Houngbo, though individual Nigerian migrants and their kin may become better off, their places of origin will largely remain backward or underdeveloped because migration and remittances by themselves do not enable any country to escape poverty and underdevelopment.28 Therefore, the Nigerian government in particular needs to urgently address the structural problems of persistent poverty and unemployment, insecurity, poor working conditions, extremely high levels of dissatisfaction, the high cost of living, poor working conditions, growing lawlessness and politically motivated violence. These are just some of the push factors that have contributed to the new wave of international migration of many intellectuals and professionals from the country. It is important to mention here that Nigerians have contributed tremendously to the development of their host country. These positive contributions are visible in the areas of education, health, and science and technology, among others. This laudable role has contributed to their successful integration in the United States. While some of the Nigerian Diaspora are making their home country proud because of their different endeavors in their host country, it is also true that a few are projecting their home country in a bad light through their involvement in criminal behavior such as drug trafficking and credit card fraud.

Notes 1 Rob Carson, “African Immigrants at 172-year High,” The News Tribune, January 5, 2003. 2 Christine P. Gambino, Edward N. Trevelyan, and John Thomas Fitzwater, “The Foreign-Born Population from Africa: 2008–2012,” American Community Survey Briefs, October 2014. www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/ 2014/acs/acsbr12-16.pdf. 3 John Abimbola and Samson Adesote, “A Comparative Study of African Diaspora in Development and Integration in the United States and the United Kingdom.” Paper Presented at International Conference on Africa and the Diaspora in the New Millennium, University of Missouri-St. Louis, October 30–November 1 (2012): 3. 4 Cited in Dilip Ratha and Sonia Plaza, “Harnessing Diasporas,” Finance and Development, 48, no. 3 (2011), www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2011/09/ratha.htm. 5 Ibid. 6 For more on this subject, see Chukwu-Emeka Chikezie, “Supporting Africa’s Regional Integration: The African Diaspora-Prototype Pan-Africanists or Parochial Village Aiders,” Africa Foundation for Development (AFFORD), 2002. www.afford-uk.org. 7 Douglass S. Massey, “Patterns and Processes of International Migration in the 21st Century,” Paper prepared for Conference on African Migration in Comparative Perspective, Johannesburg, South Africa, June 4–7, 2003. 8 Okon Uya, African Diaspora and the Black Experience in New World Slavery, (Lagos: Third Press Publications, 1992), 125. 9 Arun Peter Lobo, “Unintended Consequences: Liberalized US Immigration Law and the African Brain Drain,” in Kwadwo Konadu-Agyemang, Baffour K. Takyi, and John Arthur (eds.), The New African Diaspora in North America (New York: Lexington Books, 2006), 67. 10 See Gordon H. Hanson, “International Migration and Development,” Commission on Growth and Development, Working Paper No. 42. www-wds.worldbank.org/external/ default/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2010/12/06/000334955_20101206232516/ Rendered/PDF/577410NWP0Box353767B01PUBLIC10gcwp42web.pdf.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

104

J. O. Akinbi

11 David Shinn, “African Migration and the Brain Drain,” Paper presented at the Institute for African Studies and Slovenia Global Action Ljubljana, Slovenia June 20, 2008. https://sites.google.com/site/davidhshinn/Home/african-migration-and-thebrain-drain. 12 J. A. Arthur, Invisible Sojourners: African Immigrant Diaspora in the United States (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2000), 12. 13 Ibid. 14 Lobo, “Unintended Consequences,” (2006): 69. 15 Ibid., 72. 16 Ibid., 77. 17 Sola Akinrinade and Olukoya Ogen, “Historicising the Nigerian Diaspora: Nigerian Migrants and Homeland Relations,” Turkish Journal of Politics, 2, no. 2 (2011): 97. 18 Ibid. 19 Ibid. 20 Hein De Haas, “Engaging Diasporas: How Governments and Development Agencies Can Support Diaspora Involvement in the Development of Origin Count,” International Migration Institute, James Martin 21st Century School, University of Oxford (2006): 24. www.imi.ox.ac.uk/pdfs/engaging-diasporas-hein-de-haas.pdf. 21 Akinrinade and Ogen, “Historicizing the Nigerian Diaspora,” (2011): 101. 22 Ibid. 23 Ibid. 24 Sola Akinrinade and Aderemi Ajibewa, “Globalization, Migration and the New African Diasporas: Toward a Framework of Understanding,” in Adigun Agbaje, Larry Diamond, and Ebere Onwudiwe (eds.), Nigeria’s Struggle for Democracy and Good Governance (Ibadan, Nigeria: Ibadan University Press, 2003), 436. 25 Abimbola and Adesote, “A Comparative Study of African Diaspora,” (2012): 10. 26 Akanmu Adebayo, “Brain Drain-Brain Gain: Leveraging the Nigerian Diaspora for the Revitalization of Nigerian Higher Education,” Paper Presented at the 25th Conference of the Association of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, Osun State University, Osogbo, April 19–22, 2010. 27 Migration Policy Institute, The Nigerian Diaspora in the United States (Washington DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2015 Revised). 28 Gilbert Houngbo, “Report of the Regional Consultation on Migration, Remittances and Development in Africa,” September 4–5, 2007, Accra, Ghana.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Part III

The Diaspora and continental ramifications

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

This page intentionally left blank

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

7

The remittance objectives of second-generation Ghanaian Americans Kirstie Kwarteng

Introduction Migrant remittances are of incredible importance to developing nations. According to the World Bank, “remittances sent home by migrants to developing countries are three times the size of official development assistance.”1 The West African nation of Ghana has benefited greatly from this fact. According to the Bank of Ghana, migrant remittances to Ghana totaled one billion US dollars in 2003.2 The actual number is most likely much higher than this because remittances are also sent through informal channels. Remittances to Ghana from migrants located outside of the African continent are more than the remittances sent by migrants within Africa or within Ghana.3 Migrant remittances have now become an integral part of the Ghanaian economy, but what will happen to remittance flows once the first generation of migrants is no longer here? Will the second generation feel the need or desire to remit at the same level as their parents, if at all? It is important to examine the remittance objectives of second-generation Ghanaians to see if they will continue this pattern of giving. This chapter will examine the remittance objectives of second-generation Ghanaian Americans and the factors that affect their decision to remit or not. The focus will be on remittance objectives and not current remittance practices because of the following assumptions: (1) Most second-generation Ghanaian Americans are young and may not be in a position financially to send remittances; and (2) second-generation Ghanaian Americans may not feel the need to remit because their parents do. The purpose of this study is to examine what factors will cause second-generation Ghanaian Americans to remit in the future. It will examine the influence of cultural identity and emotional or cultural connection to Ghana on the desire to remit. It will also examine whether second-generation Ghanaian Americans are more likely to send monetary remittances or social remittances.

Literature review Overview of Ghana Ghana is a West African nation located on the Gulf of Guinea. It is bordered by Côte d’Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, and Togo to the east. Ghana

108

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

has a population of twenty-four million people and is comprised of ten regions. While English is the official language, there are over eighty local languages used.4 The most prominent Ghanaian languages are Akan, Ga, Dagomba, and Ewe.5 Christianity is the dominant religion, with over 70 percent of the population adhering to a Christian denomination. Other prevalent religions include Islam and traditional religions.6 Ghana became an independent nation on March 6, 1957, and was the first sub-Saharan African nation to do so. History of US–Ghana relations The relationship between Ghana and the United States was amicable in the period directly after Ghana’s independence. However, this began to change in the early 1960s. Ghana’s first president Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah was seen as a threat to the United States because of his socialist views, anti-capitalist rhetoric, and desire to unite African countries under a single government. Dr. Nkrumah was overthrown in a CIA-backed coup d’état in 1966.7 Tensions between the United States and Ghana rose again when Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings came to power in a coup d’état in 1981. Relations between Ghana and the United States were strained under the Rawlings administration for two reasons. First, under Rawlings, Ghana and Libya restored relations at a time when the United States and Libya were not on friendly terms.8 Libya provided Ghana with financial and material assistance and Rawlings supported Libya’s desire to try the Libyan suspects of the Pan American Airlines bombing in a neutral country instead of the United States or Britain. Second, in 1985, Ghana uncovered subversive CIA operations in the country. Rawlings’s cousin Michael Soussoudis was dating a CIA operations support assistant who provided Soussoudis with classified information and documents on CIA operations in Ghana.9 Soussoudis was charged with espionage in the United States, but was released in exchange for CIA agents imprisoned in Accra.10 In spite of these events, Ghana and the United States were able to develop a friendly relationship by the late 1980s. This was made easier in 1992 when Rawlings reinstated Ghana’s constitution and political parties. Ghanaians were, and still are, welcomed to the United States as migrants. A small group of Americans, mainly African Americans, have permanently settled in Ghana.11 In recent years, the relationship between the two nations has been strengthened, with President Barack Obama visiting Ghana in 2009 and former President of Ghana John Evans Atta-Mills visiting the United States in 2012. Ghanaian migration Excluding the slave trade, Ghanaian migration can be divided into four periods: the period of minimal volitional emigration (pre-colonization to 1965), the period of initial emigration (1965 to 1980), a phase of large-scale emigration (1980 to 1990) and a period of intensification and diasporization of Ghanaians (1990 to the present).12

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Remittance objectives of second-generation 109 During the period of minimal volitional emigration, Ghanaians came to the US in small numbers. A majority of the migrants during this time were students.13 Migration from Ghana began to increase in the 1970s, when over two million people emigrated from the country.14 During this time, Ghana’s political and economic uncertainty was at its height due to frequent coups d’états. It also suffered chronic and climatic instability. Unemployment and underemployment were endemic, inflation was high, and the currency had devalued. Confidence in the economy plummeted.15 The political and economic situation in Ghana caused Ghanaians to migrate to other countries to improve their economic and social well-being. Ghanaians initially migrated to neighboring West African countries, especially Nigeria, Togo, and Côte d’Ivoire. High-skilled Ghanaian migrants, such as teachers, lawyers, and administrators, were invited by the governments of Uganda, Botswana, Nigeria and Zambia to help with the development of their countries after independence.16 Ghanaians who had already migrated abroad to pursue an education or employment elected to remain in their host country. Migration to Western countries increased in the 1980s during the phase of large-scale emigration. Nigeria had been the most popular destination for Ghanaian migrants of all skill levels, but Nigeria forcibly deported between 900,000 and 1.2 million Ghanaians in 1983 and 10,000 more in 1985.17 This incident is commonly referred to as “Ghana must go.” After this expulsion, Ghanaians were forced to look to other African countries and Western countries, including the United States, as migration destinations. From 1986 to 2001, 49,703 Ghanaians emigrated to the US.18 Changes in United States migration laws also aided the increase in Ghanaian migration. The Immigration and Nationality Act, which was passed in 1965, repealed quotas on non-European immigrants that had been in place since the 1920s.19 In 1990, the Immigration Reform and Nationalization Act was passed, which created the Diversity Immigration Visa Program, also known as the Diversity Lottery. This lottery system provides 50,000 visas each year to nations that are perceived as low-sending migrant countries. The winners are randomly selected. Since the act has been in effect, over 20,000 Africans have been accepted as formal immigrants to the United States.20 Ghana has been allotted 5,105 visas for 2013, which is the second largest allotment given to the African continent.21 Ghanaians in the United States In the period of intensification and diasporization of Ghanaians, the Ghanaian population in the United States has increased dramatically, most notably from 1990–2000. During this time, the Ghanaian population in the United States grew from 20,889 to 65,570, an increase of 210 percent. Sixty-four percent of the Ghanaian population living in the United States in 2004 arrived between 1990 and 2000.22 When Ghanaians arrived in the United States, they settled in large metropolitan areas, where they continue to be heavily concentrated. In 2004, 35 percent of the Ghanaian migrant population lived in the New York City area, 19 percent

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

110

K. Kwarteng

lived in the Greater Washington, DC area, 11 percent lived in the Atlanta area, and 8 percent lived in the Boston area. There are 91,322 people of Ghanaian ancestry currently living in the United States.23 Ghanaians are the fourth largest African migrant group in the United States, behind Nigerians, Ethiopians, and Egyptians. Forty-six percent of Ghanaian migrants are highly skilled and work in fields such as medicine, pharmacy, nursing, and dentistry. Seventy-one percent of Ghanaian migrants in the United States are employed. The top professions for Ghanaian migrants in the US are retail and medicine, with 23.5 percent and 21.8 percent of the Ghanaian migrant population working in these areas respectively. Nearly nine out of ten Ghanaians living in the United States have graduated from high school. Approximately onethird of the Ghanaian population over twenty-five years of age has completed a bachelor’s degree or higher.24 Ghanaians in Greater Washington, DC area The Greater Washington, DC area is defined as the District of Columbia, plus twenty-one counties and independent cities in Virginia, Maryland and West Virginia.25 Ghanaians comprise 10 percent of the African population in the Washington DC area, with 11,400 people having Ghanaian ancestry. Ghanaians, as well as their African migrant counterparts, are most likely to live in the suburbs of Washington, DC, especially in Arlington and Alexandria in Virginia and Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties in Maryland.26 The Ghanaian immigrant community in this area hosts various cultural and social events, from naming ceremonies to Ghanaian Independence Day celebrations. The Ghanaian immigrant community in Washington, DC has created various associations based on ethnic groups, regions of origin, Ghanaian political affiliation, and alumni associations. Social remittances Remittances are generally defined as the portion of migrants’ earnings sent from the migration destination to the place of origin.27 As migration from Ghana increased, remittance flows to Ghana also increased. As previously stated, remittances to Ghana have reached one billion US dollars, which accounts for nearly 14 percent of Ghana’s GDP.28 As such, remittances are a vital part of Ghana’s economy. While attention to monetary remittances is warranted, it is equally important to pay attention to the social remittances that migrants send. Social remittances should receive attention because they can create a “force with tremendous transformative significance that can modify the economy, values, and everyday lives of entire regions.”29 Sociologist Peggy Levitt defines social remittances as “the ideas, behaviors, identities, and the social capital the migrants export to their home communities.”30 Social remittances are transferred when migrants return to their home countries to visit or live, when non-migrants visit their migrant relatives in

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Remittance objectives of second-generation 111 the host country, or through correspondences such as e-mails, letters, blogs, phone calls, and Skype. Levitt describes three types of social remittances: normative structures, systems of practice, and social capital. Normative structures are ideas, values, and beliefs. These include “norms for behavior, notions about family responsibility, principles of neighborliness and community participation, and aspirations for social mobility.”31 Ideas about gender, race, class identity, and organizational structure are also considered to be normative structures. Systems of practice are actions shaped by normative structures. These include delegation of household chores, which religious activities to participate in, and participation in political and civic groups. Social capital is “an economic idea that refers to the connections between individuals and entities that can be economically valuable.”32 Non-migrants may be able to access the social capital amassed by their migrant relatives overseas to gain access to better services in the home country and increase their own social status. It is important to note that social remittances may also have negative impacts on the communities to which they are sent, even when they are sent with good objectives. In their study on the impacts of social remittances on Dominican migrants abroad and their relatives at home, Deepak Lambda-Nieves and Levitt share the frustrations of family members and friends back home regarding the negative aspects of social remittances. They write: Young people dream of making a home in the United States rather than in their communities of origin. Instead of going to school or trying to find a job, they spend their days waiting for their monthly check or for the magic day when their visa finally arrives. . . . Not only do their skills and discipline waste away while they wait to leave, but the economic base of their communities continues to deteriorate. . . . Migrants and non-migrants also worry about deportees who committed crimes in the US and get into similar trouble when they return. Residents blamed them for introducing “bad habits” and increasing crime and insecurity. . . . They also held them responsible for introducing new criminal technologies and contacts with international crime syndicates.33 As this quote illustrates, social remittances have the potential to do significant harm to home countries. In sending social remittances, as with monetary remittances, it is important to find an appropriate balance so as not to disturb the social fabric of the home communities. This balance, however, can be difficult to find. One might argue that social remittances could serve as a form of cultural imperialism. However, home countries do not always accept social remittances just because they are sent from abroad. The likelihood of a social remittance being accepted increases if the remittance is similar to social norms in the home country. Levitt states: If the value structures and cognitive models migrants import are similar to prevailing norms, then social remittances are likely to be assimilated more

112

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

quickly. If the new patterns of social relations approximate those already in place, then social remittances are also more likely to be adopted. If what is remitted represents a completely new idea or behavior, it faces greater barriers to acceptance.34 In addition, social remittances are also circular in nature. Migrants bring social remittances with them from their home countries as they migrate to their host countries. Levitt and Lamba-Nieves write, “the social remittances that migrants bring with them challenge and transform the beliefs and practices of people already living in host societies . . . which, in turn, influences what immigrants then re-remit back home.”35 Second generation In the United States, 33 million people, or 11 percent of the total population, are native born with at least one foreign-born parent. These people are referred to as second generation. Foreign-born individuals are referred to as first generation. In the United States, one out of every five people is either first or second generation.36 To countries with high migrant populations, the second generation can be viewed as another avenue for remittances. However, the desire of the second generation to remit socially or monetarily may depend on their attachment to the home country and their desire to participate in its transnational activities. Transnationalism is defined as “the process by which immigrants forge and sustain simultaneous multi-stranded social relations that link together their societies of origin and settlement.”37 Transnational activities include sending remittances, migrant entrepreneurship, participation in election activities, visiting and maintaining contacts in the homeland, joining hometown associations in the host country and participating in cultural activities.38 Second-generation transnationalism has not been a focus of research because it is thought that second-generation youth do not maintain any connection to their parents’ homeland. This is not the case. Migration scholar Peggy Levitt argues that second-generation children are still heavily influenced by the culture of their parents’ home country, even if they have not visited their parents’ home country. Levitt explains, “Even if they rarely visit their ancestral homes or are not fluent in its language, they are often raised in settings that reference the homeland ideologically, materially, and affectively each day.”39 Migration scholars who have studied second-generation transnationalism have found that second-generation youth do have ties to their parents’ homelands, but the ties are weaker than those of first-generation immigrants. Anthropologist Helen Lee believes this may have “profound economic, social and political implications for nations that have long relied on migrants to send remittances and otherwise retain their involvement with the ‘homeland’.”40 Creating a greater understanding of second-generation transnationalism is important for understanding future migration patterns. Lee (2008) emphasizes the importance of analyzing second-generation trends:

Remittance objectives of second-generation 113

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Investigating the transnational engagements of migrants’ children is crucial for understanding future trends in the global movement of people, money, goods and ideas . . . the transnational ties of migrants’ children can also play a central role in the construction of their own cultural identity and shape their interactions with members of their own and other communities in the country to which their parents immigrated.41 Researchers who have studied second-generation transnationalism found that knowledge of the home country’s language is the largest determinant of attachment to the homeland and desire to participate in transnational activities. “It is language, more than land and history, that provides the essential form of belonging.”42 Evidence suggests that a majority of second-generation Ghanaians do not speak a Ghanaian language. Researcher Ian Yeboah found that 64 percent of the second-generation Ghanaian participants in his study did not speak or understand a Ghanaian language.43 Reasons why second-generation children do not speak their parents’ language are varied. In some instances, second-generation children do learn their parent’s language, but are encouraged to learn only English when entering school. Another reason is language rejection: Language rejection may also occur or be intensified as a result of discouragement over one’s lack of knowledge of the heritage language; non-fluent children try not to speak the language at all for fear of being criticized or laughed at by those who speak it better. Additionally, language rejection may occur because second-generation individuals do not see the need to learn a language they will not need while living in an English-speaking country.44 Second-generation Ghanaian Americans Second-generation Ghanaians in America often grow up in households that replicate norms, values and traditions that are found in households in Ghana. This is because first-generation Ghanaians have successfully maintained the Ghanaian cultural values they brought with them as they migrated.45 Second-generation Ghanaian Americans are expected to adhere to values instilled in them by their parents, such as respecting one’s elders, commitment to education, and community centeredness.46 Second-generation Ghanaian children also are expected to interact with other second-generation Ghanaian children. As is common with second-generation youth, second-generation Ghanaian Americans often have difficulty constructing their identity. Professor of anthropology and sociology John Arthur writes in his study of African diaspora communities in the US and Europe, “The stress that the youth place on defining their ethnicity becomes important in determining the identity they will pursue.”47 A reason why second-generation Ghanaians in the United States have difficulty constructing their identity is because they have more than one identity to choose from.

114

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Their immigrant landscape is constantly struggling to create a voice that resonates and is rooted in three legacies: American cultural ethos, Ghanaian cultural mores, and the reconstituted poly-identities currently being forged by immigrant and diaspora groups in the United States.48 Factors that impact the creation of identity in second-generation youth include the length of time they have been in the United States and the racial/ethnic make-up of their neighborhood or community.

Research methodology Twenty-six second-generation Ghanaian Americans participated in this research project. All participants were eighteen years of age or older, born and raised in the Greater Washington DC area, and had at least one Ghanaian parent. Male and female participants were included. The data was collected in the Greater Washington, DC area over a two-week period in February 2013. The participants for this study were selected using a non-random, snowball method. Recruitment for participants was done through social media, e-mail, telephone, and word of mouth. The research utilized a mixed methods approach. Quantitative data were collected through a survey and qualitative data were collected through one-on-one interviews. The interview and survey questions were adapted from the study “Generational Differences in Remittance Practices of Filipino Americans” by Jennifer Bautista.49 The data collection was done in person when possible. If the researcher and the participant were unable to meet in person, the survey was sent to the participant through e-mail and a phone or Skype interview was conducted. The researcher sent the participants an introduction letter through e-mail after they confirmed their desire to participate. A convenient location was selected by participants to collect data if the data collection process was to be completed in person. The participants signed a consent form before the data collection process began. They were also informed that their participation in this research was voluntary and that they could end their participation at any time. All of the interviews were recorded using an audio recorder or a cell phone recorder. Transcriptions were completed manually. All names in this chapter have been changed for confidentiality. The survey covered issues related to Ghanaian-language fluency, number of visits to Ghana, number of family members living in Ghana, current remittance practices, and intent to remit in the future. The interviews were semi-structured in nature and were conducted after the survey was administered. The interview questions covered issues related to identity, current and future remittance behaviors, and emotional connection to Ghana. The questions were open-ended to give the participants freedom to respond as they desired. The qualitative data was analyzed through coding and the quantitative data was analyzed by using simple statistical techniques. A limitation of this study is that it used a snowball sample instead of a random sample. Snowball sampling uses the social networks of members of the

Remittance objectives of second-generation 115

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

target population to build a sample.50 The use of snowball sampling increases the risk that the sample is unrepresentative of the target population, creating sample bias. Additionally, the sample was limited to second-generation Ghanaian Americans in the Greater Washington, DC area who are 18 years old and older, which may not fully represent the second-generation Ghanaian population in the United States.

Findings Twenty-six second-generation Ghanaian Americans participated in the study, eighteen females and eight males. The ages of the participants ranged from twenty-one to thirty-eight, with an average age of twenty-seven. One participant was still enrolled in college, eighteen participants had completed their bachelor’s degree, five participants had completed a master’s degree, and two participants had a doctorate. Eight of the participants were unemployed, but seven of the eight are unemployed because they are students. None of the participants was completely fluent in a Ghanaian language and all of the participants used English to communicate with their parents. All of the participants had visited Ghana at least once, with the majority having visited Ghana one to three times. All of the participants had relatives living in Ghana and in the United States. Table 7.1 provides the results from the survey. Remittance practices According to the survey results, nine participants have sent or are currently sending remittances. Out of these nine participants, six send money only when asked by relatives and three participants remit once a month, once a year, or two to four times a year. Out of the six that stated they remit when requested, only one remits on a regular basis. In total, there are four people who send remittances on a regular basis. The four participants who are currently remitting now indicated that they would “mostly likely yes” or “definitely yes” send remittances in the future. Seventeen participants do not send remittances. When asked if they would remit in the future, thirteen participants answered “most likely yes” or “definitely yes.” However, this number changed when the participants were asked if they would remit after their parents passed away, as only six participants stated yes. Seven participants stated they would remit only if certain conditions were met, such as a family member having a pressing need or having immediate family living in Ghana. As such, it could be inferred that the participants will remit in the future, but may stop after their parents pass away unless their conditions are met. Three of the four people who send remittances are sending money to family members. One sends remittances to pay for the tailoring of her clothes, but she also gives money to the people who handle her transactions with the seamstress. One of the remitting participants, Adwoa, sends money to her parents. Her parents have retired in Ghana and live in Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti

116

K. Kwarteng

Table 7.1 Survey data Category

Response

N = 26 %

Sex

Female Male Employed Unemployed Some college Bachelor’s Master’s Doctorate Poor Below average Average Very good Excellent Poor Below average Average Very good Excellent English only Ghanaian language only Combination English only Ghanaian language only Combination Yes No Yes No I don’t connect with my family members in Ghana Once a year 2–4 times a year Monthly 1–2 times a month I don’t send money Only when requested by family members Once a year 2–4 times a year Monthly Definitely no Most likely no May or may not Most likely yes Definitely yes Definitely no Most likely no May or may not Most likely yes Definitely yes

18 8 19 7 1 18 5 2 13 8 5 0 0 4 7 6 4 5 8 0 18 25 0 1 26 0 26 0 3

69.2 30.8 73.1 26.9 3.8 69.2 19.3 7.7 50.0 30.7 19.3 0.0 0.0 15.3 26.9 23.0 15.3 19.2 30.8 0.0 69.2 96.2 0.0 3.8 100.0 0.0 100.0 0.0 11.5

4 9 7 3 17 6

15.3 34.6 26.9 11.5 65.4 23.0

1 1 1 0 8 11 5 2 1 5 7 9 4

3.8 3.8 2.8 0.0 30.7 42.3 19.2 7.7 4.8 23.8 33.0 28.6 9.5

Employment status

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Highest level of education

Ghanaian language(s) speaking ability

Ghanaian language(s) comprehension ability

Language spoken in household Language used to communicate with parents Visited Ghana Relatives in Ghana Connect with Ghana

Currently remitting money to Ghana

Do you see yourself living or working in Ghana?

Will you remit in the future?

Remittance objectives of second-generation 117

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

region. Her father is unable to work due to a disability and her mother has set up a small shop by their home. Adwoa shares remitting responsibilities with her three older brothers to help support their parents. She said: My brothers do it every month, and they send way more than me, but I don’t do it every month. I do it probably whenever my mom asks, like every other month or so. I do what I can which is like every couple of months or every other month. We all have an account at the bank just to put money in to send to my parents so we do that.51 Even though Adwoa indicated “definitely yes” when asked on the survey if she would remit in the future, she does not believe she will send remittances after her parents pass away. The relatives that she is in touch with are financially stable, so she does not think there will be a need. She said, “I just send my parents money so if they pass on I wouldn’t have any need to really send money unless maybe the home that’s there needs to be up kept.”52 Another remitting participant, Gifty, sends money to her father and her two half sisters, aged nine and thirteen. Her father and her two half sisters do not live together, so she sends them money separately. Her father’s finances are not stable, so she sends him money on a monthly basis. Gifty sends money to her half sisters because their father does not support them and their mother is not working. When asked if she knows that the money is going to her sisters she replied, “I don’t. I just do it and I pray that it goes somewhere. At times, I doubt she’s using it for them, but it eases my conscience being able to do that.”53 Like Adwoa, Gifty does not have plans to remit after her parents pass on, but she does have plans to bring her sisters to the United States because they have been granted American citizenship. She said: I would rather have them live with me and I care for them versus me caring for them through their mom. Their mom is encouraging me to do this. I think it’s become somewhat of a burden to raise them without having any income. She feels that if they’re American citizens and if they’re of age, they’ll do better out here than to be in Ghana and grow up poor.54 As previously stated, seventeen participants are not remitting. The reasons for not remitting included not having enough money, not having a relationship with family members in Ghana, not being asked to remit, the financial stability of family members in Ghana, and the current remittances of parents. Elizabeth is a twenty-five-year-old accreditation officer. She has been to Ghana twice and stays in touch with her family in Ghana. On the survey, she indicated that she was not sending remittances. During the interview she said, “No one has asked me to send any money and most of my family members at home are well off so they don’t really ask for it.” She also indicated “most likely no” on the survey when asked if she would remit in the future and stated that she will not remit after her parents pass away. She said, “Who needs the money? There’s

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

118

K. Kwarteng

no other connection. If my parents were in Ghana then I’ll send money, but if they aren’t there, no.”55 Six people indicated on the survey “definitely no” or “most likely no” and seven answered “may or may not” when asked if they would remit in the future. During the interview however, twelve people said “no” and three people said “maybe if there was a need” when asked if they would remit after their parents passed away. Out of the seven people who answered “may or may not” on the survey, five answered “no” when asked if they would remit after their parents passed away. Based on the answers from the interview, twelve of the participants will not remit after their parents pass away. This number could increase to fifteen if the three respondents do not feel there is a palpable need to remit. Second-generation Ghanaian identity During the interview portion of the data collection process, participants were asked, “Do you define yourself as Ghanaian, Ghanaian American, African American, or American?” Table 7.2 shows the results. The participants who identified as Ghanaian did so simply because their parents are from Ghana and they grew up in a Ghanaian household. One participant said, “Both parents are from Ghana and I grew up in a Ghanaian home, so I consider myself Ghanaian.” Participants who selected Ghanaian American had similar sentiments regarding being born to Ghanaian parents and being raised in a Ghanaian household, but also acknowledged the impact of being born and raised in the United States. A participant stated, “I wasn’t raised in Ghana. I have been raised here in America and I know that my parents raised us with Ghanaian principles.”56 Another stated, “I’m Ghanaian American because the blood that runs through me is Ghanaian blood but I live here and was raised here and was born here in America.”57 Four participants identified as African American. Two participants selected this identity because they view their parents as African instead of Ghanaian, and they themselves were born in America. One participant said: I just feel like I’m the most literal part of that. I feel like my family is from Africa, I’m aware of my African culture but I also was raised and born in America so I feel like I’m a combination of both.58 Table 7.2 Second-generation Ghanaian identity-interview data Identity

Number of participants

Percentage

Ghanaian Ghanaian American African American Ghanaian American and African American American

8 11 4 2 1

30 42 7 15 3

Remittance objectives of second-generation 119

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Another participant selected African American because he does not feel any connection to Ghana. He stated, “I want to acknowledge the fact that ethnically I’m not really from this area, but to be completely honest I don’t feel much connection to my home country. That’s why I choose the general.”59 The participants who selected both Ghanaian American and African American did so for separate reasons. One wanted to acknowledge her cultural heritage while acknowledging how race is defined in the United States. She said, I say Ghanaian American and African American because I was born here but my parents are from Ghana, so I feel like I’m a mixture of both. African American is just for like the census and if I’m filling out something like a census, it’s not really specific. But if someone asks me ‘Where in Africa are you from?’ I’ll say Ghana.60 The other made his choice because he identifies as Ghanaian and African but was born in the United States. I was born in America so I understand American culture, or by virtue of me being born here I am an American, but because my parents are both from Ghana I have a direct heritage to Ghana. I understand the culture as far as identifying as being Ghanaian or African so I see myself more as Ghanaian American or African American.61 The one participant who identified as solely American did so because he was born and raised in the United States and does not speak or understand a Ghanaian language. He acknowledges the fact that he is of Ghanaian blood, but he does not feel that he can really claim Ghanaian culture as his own. He stated, “You can’t speak the language, you can’t understand the language really. It’s like, are you really of that culture? You might understand the culture by association and whatnot, but I wouldn’t say it’s your identity.”62 When participants were asked in what ways they consider themselves to be Ghanaian and how they displayed their Ghanaian identity, common responses were food, clothing, fashion, and entertainment such as Ghanaian music and Ghanaian movies. One way that the participants desired to display their Ghanaian heritage was through language fluency. This issue was a source of contention for a majority of the participants. As one participant stated: Before I leave this Earth I have got to learn the language, and that’s also a point of contention going there. They do make you feel uncomfortable when you don’t speak the language, I mean rightly so, but it’s so hard to explain it’s not my fault.63 None of the participants are completely fluent in a Ghanaian language. The highest fluency level indicated was “average” by five participants. The remaining twenty-one participants selected “below average” or “poor”. However,

120

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

fifteen participants understand a Ghanaian language at an “average”, “above average”, or “excellent” level. For some participants, language fluency and their identity were related. One participant stated: It’s the language that forces me to accept my American side. I think if I were fluent, I wouldn’t call myself Ghanaian American. I would say I was born here, but I would see myself as a Ghanaian. I think it’s the language that separates me from being Ghanaian wholly. It’s a language that makes me American.64 Another participant stated that lack of language fluency had prevented her from building connections with her family members in Ghana. She said, “The difficulty in building relationships sometimes is that not all of them speak English, and that’s going to be an awkward phone call because I can only get by with so much.”65 Five participants stated that they were fluent in a Ghanaian language as young children. Two of these five participants stated that a Ghanaian language was their first language. Language loss began for these participants when they entered school and their parents were instructed to speak to them only in English. Araba is one of these participants. She stated: When we first started school, Fante was spoken at home. I was fluent, but when I started school, they said I was very quiet and introverted so maybe I was confused by the languages. “You’re speaking Fante at home; you’re speaking English at school. That’s going to hinder her.” So my parents said “fine, we’ll do English”. . . . They messed up a lot of us.66 Another participant, Kwame, stated he was put in an ESL (English as a Second Language) course until he was in the Fifth grade because Twi was spoken at home. “They were saying I was having a hard time learning English so they shouldn’t teach me, so they had to stop. So I took ESL until I was in the Fifth grade.”67 For other participants, language loss did not happen because of school, but because they did not see the importance of learning a Ghanaian language: My parents made an active effort but I said “I don’t know what you’re saying” and that was my way of saying “Look, I don’t want to learn just speak to me in English.” . . . I think the culture, American culture, got to me in that that’s not a cool thing.68 Identity and remittance objectives Only the participants who identified as Ghanaian or Ghanaian American said they would send remittances to Ghana in the future. Three of the participants who identified as Ghanaian and six of the participants who identified as Ghanaian

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Remittance objectives of second-generation 121 American answered “definitely yes” or “most likely yes” on the survey when asked if they would remit in the future. During the interviews however, these numbers changed. When asked if they will remit after their parents pass away, two Ghanaian identifying participants and three Ghanaian American identifying participants stated they would remit. One Ghanaian identifying participant and four Ghanaian American identifying participants said they would remit based on certain conditions, such as developing an emotional connection to people in Ghana, or if there was a pressing need, or upon parental request. One participant who identified as Ghanaian American and two who identified as African American also stated that they would remit based on certain conditions. Social remittances vs. monetary remittances When asked if it is better to send back monetary or social remittances, fourteen people said social remittances, five said monetary remittances, five said both social and monetary remittances, and two gave answers saying, “it depends on the need” and “it depends on the age of the recipient.” One reason why social remittances were more popular than monetary remittances is because participants were afraid of being taken advantage of by people in Ghana. One participant stated, “You don’t not want to help them but you also don’t want be in a position of an ATM machine.”69 This fear comes from stories their parents and other relatives living in America have told them regarding sending remittances. One participant stated: I’ve heard plenty of times of how people who send back money . . . the people they send it to will use it for something it wasn’t intended for. Somebody sent back some money for a family member who was sick and instead of using the money for the bill for the sick person, the money was used to buy something.70 Participants also stated they did not feel comfortable sending monetary remittances to family members they did not know or to whom they have no emotional connection. Some did state that they would prefer to send social remittances not for any emotional reason, but because they believe social remittances are the more efficient way to aid in Ghana’s development. One participant said: I think the most valuable thing we can do is social remittances. People’s attitudes towards corruption and how people are completely ok with it. . . . I feel like if people can show how much more effective things are and how much more we can all get if we are willing to delay gratification a little bit, I feel like that would be a little more productive than feeding that particular mindset by sending back money.71 Participants also favored social remittances over monetary remittances because they believed sending social remittances would help decrease dependence on financial assistance. One participant said:

122

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

I’ve seen how monetary remittances put people in a position where they are not pushed to do for themselves, but instead they’re always depending on the money to come . . . if you share an idea, help people to set goals, help people to try and educate themselves and so forth, they can do for themselves and not be so dependent on the financial part, because once that stops what will they do?72 One participant suggested that Ghanaians in Ghana could send Ghanaians living in the United States social remittances on Ghanaian culture: I was using the perspective of them to us because our idea of what a Ghanaian is is solely based on how we were raised. If there’s anything different we can see what’s happening or what’s changed. I think it’d be nice to know that here, unless it’s just remained the same.73 The participants who selected monetary remittances did so because they felt sending money was the better way to meet the immediate needs of their family members. One participant stated: Just growing up and seeing that this is what my parents do as far as to help family members back home for money. I don’t even think it’s been “yea let’s talk about it.” Usually they’re calling because they need your money for something. Another participant said, “I mean if money or whatever, clothes, resources is what they need, then I think that’d probably be better.” The specific recipient of remittances also emerged as a factor in deciding whether social or monetary remittances are better. Adwoa, the participant who remits to her parents, said she would send monetary remittances over social remittances since her parents won’t listen to her because they are her elders. She said, “In my case, money, because no matter what I tell my parents they aren’t really going to do it.”74 The participants did note that the United States is not perfect, and that there is the possibility of sending back social remittances that could hinder Ghana’s development. Gifty stated: Not everything Western is good. Not everything Western can work. I think that shows a lot. When I went back home, a lot of people are complaining that the youth of Ghana are not the same anymore in terms of respect and in terms of how they dress and in terms of behavior, and it’s because they are being influenced by what they see on TV. . . . As long as it’s positive and meant to uplift our people then I think that the social aspect supersedes the monetary.75

Remittance objectives of second-generation 123

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Emotional and cultural connection to Ghana When asked if they had a cultural or emotional connection to Ghana, twenty participants said “yes,” four participants said “only cultural,” and two participants said “no.” Participants from each identity group stated they felt an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana. Six of the eight participants who identified as Ghanaian stated they felt an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana. Of the remaining two, one stated she felt only a cultural connection to Ghana and the other stated that she felt a connection to her family and not the culture. Nine of the eleven participants who identified as Ghanaian American felt they had an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana. The remaining two stated they felt only a cultural connection. One participant who identified as a Ghanaian American said she did not view her connection to be emotional because she did not grow up in Ghana. Regarding the participants who identified as African American, two said they did have cultural or emotional connections to Ghana, one said she felt a cultural connection, and one said he did not feel any connection to Ghana, which is also the reason why he identifies as African American. The person who stated he felt solely a cultural connection did so because he is not emotionally attached to his family members in Ghana. However, he did state that he feels that he has to represent his heritage amongst his friends and peers who are second-generation Africans. The two participants who identified as Ghanaian American and African American and the participant who identified as American did feel an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana. Following Ghanaian current events and pop culture were ways participants maintained their connections to Ghana. In discussing current events in Ghana, the participants noted Ghana’s 2012 election and the death of President John Evans Atta-Mills as the most major events that had occurred in Ghana within the past year. The Azonto dance, Azonto music, and highlife and hiplife music were brought up when discussing pop culture. Ghanaweb.com was the most popular source for retrieving information on Ghana’s current events and pop culture. Other sources mentioned included Ghananation.com, BBC, and the Associated Press. The participants that did not follow Ghanaian current events or pop culture closely stated they had a relative that did and would find information through their relative. The participants also stated that upholding Ghanaian values and traditions are ways they maintain their connections to Ghana. Dorothy is twenty-nine years old and works in sales. She is the youngest of five children and is the only one of her siblings to be born in the Unites States. To her, maintaining Ghanaian traditions and values are how she maintains her connection to Ghana. She said: My family is from Ghana, so that comes into our traditions and values . . . respect your elders, offer your right hand to people as opposed to your left hand, greet your parents in the morning, greet them before you go to bed, when you walk into a room greet everyone.76

124

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Participants also stated attending cultural events such as outdoorings (naming ceremonies), funerals, and engagements as ways they sustain their connection. One participant, Doris, was heavily involved in Ghanaian cultural events because of her father’s involvement. She stated: He’s the head of the family and he is the one who does a lot of the naming ceremonies. He does engagements in our family because he’s one of the leaders of the family, so he speaks on our behalf. He emcees funerals so he really knows the ins and outs of how we do our funerals and engagements.77 In addition, the majority of the participants either currently attend or have attended a predominantly Ghanaian church. Out of the twenty participants that stated they do feel an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana, five are planning on sending money in the future. Three participants said they would give if certain conditions are met, three participants stated maybe, and nine participants said they would not remit.

Discussion The reasons why the participants are not currently remitting affirmed the researcher’s assumptions. However, more reasons were brought up than were expected, especially the reason of not having a relationship with people in Ghana. Regarding remitting in the future, half of the participants answered, “most likely yes” or “definitely yes” when asked in the survey. However, only six people stated they would remit when asked “Will you remit after your parents pass away?” during the interview. This speaks to the argument that emotional connection to people in the home country is a significant factor in remittance determination. The place of residence of close family members significantly affects remittance behavior.78 Tineke Fokkema et al. write, “The presence of parents abroad . . . enormously increased the likelihood to remit.”79 The fact that the participants were not as willing to send remittances after their parents passed away may indicate that emotional connection to individuals in Ghana, and not to the country or culture itself, is the most important factor in remitting. Based on this information, it may be implied that second-generation Ghanaians will most likely remit in the future, but will stop after their parents pass away unless they have close relatives living in Ghana. For the sub-question, “How does identity influence remittance objectives?” there was no clear relationship between how people identified and their desire to remit. With the exception of the person who identified as American, at least one participant from each identity group stated that they would remit in the future or after their parents passed away. Some participants stated that they would remit if they had a connection to someone in Ghana, which affirms the position that emotional connection to people in the home country is an important factor in remittance determination. A potential relationship exists between identity and current remitting practices. The participants who are sending remittances identified

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Remittance objectives of second-generation 125 themselves as Ghanaian in some form, whether Ghanaian, Ghanaian American or Ghanaian American and African American. The sub-question, “Does having an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana increase the desire to remit?” also affirmed the importance of emotional attachment to people in the homeland, as the data did not show a relationship between having an emotional or cultural connection to Ghana and the desire to remit. Twenty-four participants stated they felt a connection to Ghana, but only three of these participants answered “definitely yes” when asked if they would remit in the future, and only four said they would remit after their parents passed. Since it appears that second-generation Ghanaians will remit in the future until their parents pass away, one could argue that their participation in transnational activities may also cease after their parents pass away. The data showed that second-generation Ghanaian Americans are more likely to send social remittances than monetary remittances because the participants viewed them more positively and saw them as a more effective means to create change in Ghana. The reasons they gave for preferring social remittances to monetary remittances included fear of being taken advantage of, not feeling comfortable sending money to people they do not know well and not wanting to create or continue a cycle of dependency. From this data, it can be inferred that monetary remittances to Ghana will most likely decrease in the future and the sending of social remittances will most likely increase. If this shift does occur, it will be important to monitor how this change impacts the Ghanaian economy and social fabric.

Conclusions and recommendations for future research The evidence from this survey leads to the conclusion that second-generation Ghanaian Americans will most likely remit in the future, but will stop after their parents pass away. An emotional connection to people in Ghana was the biggest determinant of second-generation Ghanaian Americans’ intent to remit. An emotional or cultural connection to Ghana and cultural identity did not play a factor in future remittance objectives. Second-generation Ghanaian Americans are also more likely to send social remittances instead of monetary remittances. The combination of the issues stated above most likely means the amount of money remitted to Ghana will decrease in the future, especially after the first-generation passes away, but will not stop completely because emigration from Ghana is still occurring. The decrease in monetary remittances could have serious implications for Ghana’s future. However, if the second-generation sends social remittances, it may help make up for the decline in monetary remittances, if Ghanaians choose to accept the social remittances. One recommendation for further research is performing a follow-up study in the future to see if the participants’ attitudes towards remitting have changed or remained the same. Another recommendation is replicating this study, including people who are under the age of eighteen, and categorizing the participants based on their decade of birth. This could possibly assess how transnational communities

126

K. Kwarteng

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

created by the rise of the Internet and social media impact cultural identity, connection to Ghana, and intent to remit in the future. Additionally, repeating this study with second-generation Ghanaians from different countries could determine whether there are differences in cultural identity, connection to Ghana, and remittance objectives based on geographical location.

Notes 1 World Bank, Migration and Remittances, World Bank, (2012), http://web.worldbank. org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/NEWS/0,,contentMDK:20648762~pagePK:64257043~pi PK:437376~theSitePK:4607,00.html. 2 E. K. Y. Addison, The Macroeconomic Impact of Remittances in Ghana. Bank of Ghana (2004), 12. 3 Valentina Mazzucato, Nicholas Nsowah-Nuamah, and Bart Van den Boom, “Remittances in Ghana: Origin, Destination and Issues of Measurement,” International Migration, 46, no. 1 (2008): 103–121. 4 Paul M. Lewis, Gary F. Simons, and Charles D. Fennig (eds.), Ethnologue: Languages of the World, SIL International (2013), www.ethnologue.com. 5 Language and Religion, Ghana Embassy (2013), www.ghanaembassy.org/index. php?page=language-and-religion. 6 Ghana, Central Intelligence Agency (2013), www.cia.gov/library/publications/theworld-factbook/geos/gh.html. 7 William Blum, Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II (London: Zed Books, 2003). 8 Ghana Country Study, Library of Congress, (1994), http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/ ghtoc.html. 9 Ronald Kessler, Inside the CIA (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1992), 199. 10 Ghana Country Study, Library of Congress (1994). 11 Ibid. 12 John Anarfi, Stephen Kwankye, Ofuso-Mensah Ababio, and Richmond Tiemoko, Migration from and to Ghana: A Background Paper, Development Research Centre on Migration, Globalisation and Poverty, (2003), www.migrationdrc.org/publications/ working_papers/WP-C4.pdf. Retrieved March 8, 2013. 13 Ibid. 14 Ibid. 15 Mariama Awumbila, Cynthia A. Tagoe, Thomas A. Bosiakoh, Takyiwaa Manu, and Peter Quartey, Migration Country Paper: Ghana. Centre for Migration Studies, (2008), www.imi.ox.ac.uk/pdfs/ghana-country-paper. 16 Ibid. 17 Anarfi et al., Migration from and to Ghana, (2003). 18 Ibid. 19 Ronald H. Bayor, Multicultural America: An Encyclopedia of the Newest Americans (Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, LLC, 2011), 282. 20 Ibid. 21 “Diversity Visa Program (DV-2013)—Selected Entrants,” US State Department, 2013, http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/types/types_5715.html. 22 Micah Bump, Ghana: Searching for Opportunities at Home and Abroad, Migration Policy Institute (2006), www.migrationinformation.org/USFocus/display.cfm? ID=381. 23 United States Census 2010, US Census Bureau, www.census.gov/2010census. 24 Manuel Orozco, Diasporas, Development and Transnational Integration: Ghanaian in the US, UK and Germany, Institute for the Study of International Migration

Remittance objectives of second-generation 127 25

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38

39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50

and Inter-American Dialogue (2005), www.thedialogue.org/PublicationFiles/ Ghanaian%20transnationalism.pdf. Population Change in the Washington DC Metropolitan Area, George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis (2011), http://cra.gmu.edu/pdfs/researach_reports/ recent_reports/Population_Change_in_the_Washington_Metropolitan_Area.pdf. Jill Wilson, African-Born Blacks in the Washington DC Metro Area, Population Reference Bureau (2008), www.prb.org/Articles/2008/blackImmigrantsdc.aspx. Addison, The Macroeconomic Impact of Remittances in Ghana, (2004). Katelin Maher, “Does Citizenship in a Host Country Influence Remittance Behavior? An Analysis of Ghanaians Living in the US, UK, Germany and The Netherlands,” (master’s thesis, Georgetown University, 2009). Peggy Levitt, Social Remittances: Culture as Development Tool (presentation, Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2005). Peggy Levitt, Transnational Migrants: When “Home” Means More Than One Country, Migration Policy Institute, 2004, www.migrationinformation.org/feature/ display.cfm?id=261. Levitt, Social Remittances: Culture as Development Tool (2005). “Social Capital Definition,” Investopedia (2013), www.investopedia.com/terms/s/ socialcapital.asp. Deepak Lamba-Nieves and Peggy Levitt, It’s Not Just the Economy, Stupid, Migration Policy Institute (2010), 6, www.migrationinformation.org/USfocus/display.cfm? ID=783. Peggy Levitt, “Social Remittances: Migration Driven Local-level Forms of Cultural Diffusion,” Immigration Migration Review, 32, no. 4 (1998): 926–948. Lamba-Nieves and Levitt, It’s Not Just the Economy, Stupid, (2010). United States Census 2010, US Census Bureau, (2010). Nina Glick Schiller, Linda Basch, and Cristina Szanton Blanc, “From Immigrant to Transmigrant: Theorizing Transnational Migration,” Anthropological Quarterly, 68, no. 1 (1995): 48–63. Johan Ackaert, Kris Vancluysen, and Van M. Craen, Transnational Activities and Social-cultural Integration of Moroccan and Turkish Descendants in Flemish Belgium (presentation, XXVI IUSSP International Population Conference, Marrakech, Morocco, September 2009). Peggy Levitt, “Roots and Routes: Understanding the Lives of the Second Generation Transnationally,” Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 35 (2009): 1225–1242. Helen Lee, (ed.) Ties to the Homeland: Second-generation Transnationalism (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008), viii. Ibid. Thomas Y. Owusu, “To Buy or Not to Buy: Determinants of Home Ownership among Ghanaian Immigrants in Toronto,” Canadian Geographer, 42, no. 1 (1998): 40–52. Ian E. A. Yeboah, Black African Neo-Diaspora: Ghanaian Immigrant Experiences in the Greater Cincinnati, Ohio, Area (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2008). Leanne Hinton, Involuntary Language Loss Among Immigrants: Asian-American Linguistic Autobiographies, ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics, 1999, http://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED436982. John Arthur, The African Diaspora in the United States and Europe: A Ghanaian Experience (Hampshire, England: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2008), 105. Ibid. Ibid., 107. Ibid. Jennifer A. Bautista, “Generational Differences in Remittance Practices of Filipino Americans,” (master’s thesis, California State University, 2009). Snowball Sampling, Fort Collins Science Center, n.d., www.fort.usgs.gov/LandsatSurvey/SnowballSampling.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

128 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78

K. Kwarteng

Adwoa (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Ibid. Gifty (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Ibid. Elizabeth (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Araba (second generation Ghanaian) in discussing with the author, February 2013. Kwame (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Respondent (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Adwoa in discussion with the author. Gifty in discussion with the author. Dorothy (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Doris (second generation Ghanaian) in discussion with the author, February 2013. Cecilia Menjívar, Julie DaVanzo, Lisa Greenwell, and R. Burciaga Valdez, “Remittance Behavior of Filipino and Salvadoran Immigrants in Los Angeles,” International Migration Review, 32, no. 1 (1998): 99–128. 79 Tineke Fokkema and Hein de Haas, Pre- and Post-migration Determinants of Sociocultural Integration of African Immigrants in Italy and Spain, International Migration, 2011, www.heindehaas.com/Publications/Fokkema%20and%20De%20Haas%202011 %20Determinants%20of%20socio-cultural%20integration.pdf.

8

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge in Nigeria

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Silk Ugwu Ogbu

Introduction Since the end of colonization, most African countries, including Nigeria, have been grappling with the problem of leadership. In spite of the enormous human and material resources spread all over its vast lands, Africa is undeniably the poorest continent in the world, as it is home to most of the poorest countries on earth. Historically, the migration of Africans to the West could be traced to the era of the slave trade. However, from the end of colonial rule, through the independence of the African states and on to the present, a tremendous exodus of Africans to other countries within and outside of the continent has occurred. Recent estimates reveal that, starting from the 1950s, over thirty million people of African descent may have migrated to other countries outside of their homelands due to several reasons.1 The movement of people from Africa to the West before independence was induced by the need to develop competency and quickly train Africans to take over the administration and governance from the departing colonialists. Later, migrants left Africa because of the proliferation of conflicts throughout the continent in the years following independence. In Nigeria, the civil war of 1967–1970, for example, led to the relocation and displacement of several millions of people, many of whom never returned after the war ended. In other parts of Africa, the story has been the same. In 2009, 4.9 million people were forced to leave their homes in Sudan, while 1.4 million people from the Democratic Republic of Congo were similarly displaced.2 Many agree that the problems of failed states, underdevelopment, and violent conflicts are all traceable to the failure of leadership in Africa. Beyond the conflicts, the 1980s and 1990s administrative incompetence in most of the emergent African states led to the weakness or collapse of political, economic, and sociocultural institutional frameworks. During this time in Nigeria, the introduction of austerity measures and structural adjustment programs by the government to reduce fiscal imbalance in the economy specifically fueled the exit of millions of people, many of whom were trained professionals. Across Africa, similar circumstances also exacerbated the brain drain to the extent that, today, there may be more doctors of Ethiopian origin practicing in

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

130

S. U. Ogbu

Chicago than in Addis Ababa. More than half of Nigeria’s academic personnel work abroad and three-quarters of all Ghanaian and Zimbabwean doctors leave within a few years of completing medical school.3 Recently, deteriorating standards and the collapse of educational systems in most of Africa has provided a new impetus to the unending surge of migrants in search of greener pastures outside of their homeland. Perhaps bad leadership contributed to the systemic failures fueling the migrations or maybe the mass exodus may have depleted the human resources necessary for the emergence of good leadership in Africa. Nevertheless, whether it was the egg that came before the chicken or vice versa, many countries in Africa, especially Nigeria, face severe leadership challenges and require immediate assistance in human and social capital development that can be sourced from their pool of experienced professionals living abroad. In Nigeria, the inability of the ruling elite to provide transformational leadership since independence has become the most important obstacle to development and institutional growth. This chapter analyzes the problem of leadership in Nigeria and the relevance of the Diaspora, both as a potential source of good leadership and also as a facilitator of social and attitudinal change within Nigerian society. It critically examines the important role Nigerians living in the Diaspora can play in charting a new course for the nation and how the government can encourage those who are willing, but afraid, to return, especially as the search for transformational leaders has effectively commenced. The chapter identifies corruption as the major problem facing the Nigerian leadership and interrogates the prospects of engaging the Diaspora to drive the necessary reforms and development of the homeland. It also argues that, if adequate institutional and policy frameworks are put in place, Nigeria has the potential not only to harness its enormous resources in the Diaspora for its development, but also to reverse the so called “brain drain” to “brain gain.”

Relevance of the Diaspora to homeland development There is no doubting the fact that the Diaspora of those of African descent today possesses tremendous wealth. The concern that most governments in Africa share is how they can tap into this massive resource for the development of their countries. In this regard, it is imperative to identify some vital areas where Diaspora contributions could be relevant, especially for a developing country such as Nigeria. Remittances and national development The value of international remittances from the Diaspora to their home countries has been a subject of great interest. National governments across Asia, Latin America and, of late, Africa have discovered the relevance of these remittances to the economic and social transformation of their countries, and are now building bridges to stimulate and enhance cooperation with their Diasporas.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 131 China, Korea, and India are countries that have shown that Diaspora contributions can significantly help to transform economies. The approaches adopted by these Asian nations point to country-driven initiatives that are built on shared development objectives between the government and the Diaspora, and underlined by comprehensive policies, administrative structures and incentives to foster an enabling environment for mobilizing Diaspora resources (expertise, investments, entrepreneurship and corporate affiliations) around critical growth pillars.4 The enormity of this potential is supported everyday by new statistics. The Chinese Diaspora, for example, is estimated to own over US$1.1 trillion,5 while Indians abroad generated an annual income equal to about 35 percent of India’s GDP, which was $1.16 trillion in 2008.6 It may not be possible to confirm the exact volume of the flow of remittances to Africa, due to the high level of informal transfers, but it is estimated that over thirty million Africans living in the Diaspora send home more than $40 billion annually.7 In 2008, it was revealed that Nigerians living abroad sent back a whopping $7 billion dollars to make Nigeria the sixth highest destination of diaspora remittances in the world.8 Since then, the flow of remittances to Nigeria has grown substantially, enough to surpass even Official Development Assistance (ODA). The inflow of these funds is most visible in the purchase of land and property, the establishment of small businesses, and the day-to-day upkeep of households across the country. Transfer of technology Another important area in which the relevance of the African Diaspora is clearly evident is in the transfer of technology to developing countries. The brain drain, as it were, depleted the huge human resource of most African countries. Many of the skilled migrants from Africa to the West and other parts of the world, through training and working experience over the years, are now some of the best professionals in the world. Like Korea, Indonesia, China, Malaysia, and India, Nigeria can also utilize the vast talents of its professionals living abroad, specifically for the purpose of promoting the transfer of technology and the acceleration of its industrialization processes. Education and health Similarly, the Diaspora can contribute significantly to the improvement of the education and health sectors in Nigeria. The current trend of Nigerians travelling to India and the West for even minor medical check-ups is worrisome and regrettable. Likewise, the recent upsurge in the number of Nigerians leaving for tertiary education abroad and the fact that foreign nationals are no longer coming to Nigeria for study is an indication of a serious anomaly in the education system. However, through the assistance of medical professionals of Nigerian descent working in health institutions and teaching in several renowned universities

132

S. U. Ogbu

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

abroad, Nigeria can improve these critical and fundamental sectors for the overall benefit of the nation. These professionals have the capacity to establish links with home institutions (such as universities and research centers), provide occasional face-to-face tutoring, collect and distribute materials (books, computers, medical supplies, etc.) and mobilize their host countries to assist in these efforts.9 Community development Furthermore, the Diaspora has been very instrumental to community development across Africa. In Nigeria, the development of rural infrastructure and facilities has been accelerated through the initiative and support of migrants living abroad. In most cases, the contributions from the Diaspora fill the necessary gaps at community level, which government and official development assistance are unable to reach. These contributions are easily seen in the provision of basic infrastructure such as water, roads, and electricity as well as in the construction of schools, hospitals, markets, and so on. The potential of the Diaspora to facilitate community development through the deployment of social and human capital has remained largely untapped by most African countries, in spite of available statistics indicating the magnitude of this resource. Political leadership Perhaps the most obvious sector in which the capacity of the Diaspora has remained unused in Africa is in the area of leadership. The failure of most African states and the proliferation of conflicts across the continent are easily traceable to the failure of leadership. Yet, Africa has over thirty million citizens living abroad, many of whom are trained and skilled in those critical sectors where leadership is lacking. In Nigeria, the problem of “leadership” is further compounded by that of “followership,” and while there may be no shortage of qualified persons to fill leadership positions, the assistance of the Diaspora is certainly needed to change certain entrenched negative habits and cultural behaviors.

Nigeria and the challenge of leadership In the opinion of the renowned literary icon Professor Chinua Achebe, “the trouble with Nigeria” is the problem of leadership: pure and simple! According to Achebe: The trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership. There is nothing basically wrong with the Nigerian character. There is nothing wrong with the Nigerian land, climate, water, air, or anything else. The Nigerian problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to their responsibility, to the challenge of personal example, which is the hallmark of true leadership.10

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 133 Indeed, most Nigerians will agree that Achebe hit the nail on the head with his identification of the problem, though the solution to it has never attracted any meaningful consensus. The major question has always been, what is leadership and what kind of leadership or governance does Nigeria truly need? Leadership has been defined in so many ways that it is possible to find as many definitions of leadership in literature as there are scholars who have tried to define it. A popular definition of leadership describes it as a process whereby an individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal.11 Leadership is also defined as a process of social influence by which a person can enlist the support of others in the accomplishment of a common task.12 Early theories on leadership emphasized the importance of certain traits or attributes that a leader should possess. A leader is seen as a “Great Man” endowed with unusual capabilities and set aside from the group by nature or divine assignment. Thus, a leader is said to be born, not made! At this time, people with exceptional traits such as charisma, eloquence, and intelligence were easily identified as potential leaders and groomed for higher responsibilities, especially in the military. The “trait” theory, popularized through the writings of Niccolò Machiavelli and Max Weber, was, however, challenged by behavioral scholars who emerged after the Second World War. Led by Douglas McGregor,13 the “behaviorists” argued that it was impossible to measure traits such as honesty, integrity, loyalty, and diligence. Therefore, leadership should be defined not through attributes, but by behavior. That is to say, it is not what you have but how you use it that really matters. In other words, leaders are made, not born! Since then, several other theories have evolved in leadership studies, including situational, contingency, transactional, and transformational theories. However, of great interest to this chapter is the transformational style of leadership originally proposed by James McGregor Burns14 and further expounded by Bernard Bass.15 Bass draws the distinction between transactional and transformational styles of leadership, from the angle that transactional leaders work within their organizational cultures following existing rules, procedures, and norms, while transformational leaders change culture by first understanding it and then realigning the organization’s culture with a new vision and a revision of its shared assumptions, values, and norms.16 Transformational leaders are identified by four characteristics, otherwise called the four I’s of transformational leadership. These four factors are idealized influence, inspirational motivation, intellectual stimulation, and individualized consideration.17 Bass and Avolio posit that: Transformational leaders integrate creative insight, persistence and energy, intuition and sensitivity to the needs of others to “forge the strategy culture alloy” for their organizations. In contrast, transactional leaders are characterized by contingent reward and management-by-exception styles of leadership. Essentially, transactional leaders develop exchanges or agreements with their followers, pointing out what the followers will receive if they do something right as well as wrong.18

134

S. U. Ogbu

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

In general, it appears that the failure of leadership in Nigeria can be attributed to the leadership style we have experienced since independence. The prevalence of transactional leadership in Nigerian history, some argue, has resulted in the perpetuation of a culture of impunity, selfishness, and corruption over the years. As Bass and Avolio argue: There is a constant interplay between culture and leadership. Leaders create mechanisms for cultural development and the reinforcement of norms and behaviors expressed within the boundaries of the culture. Cultural norms arise and change because of what leaders focus their attention on, how they react to crises, the behaviors they role model, and whom they attract to their organizations. The characteristics and qualities of an organization’s culture are taught by its leadership and eventually adopted by its followers.19 Therefore, there is need for Nigeria to seek the intervention of transformational leaders if she is desirous of reversing a culture of ineptitude, decadence, and decline that pervades the entire social, economic and political landscape to such a dangerous extent that the survival of the nation is now at risk. Since Nigerian Independence, a sustained culture of impunity, corruption, administrative recklessness, and dishonesty of the political ruling class has become the major clog in the wheel of national development and integration. The young military officers who overthrew the first civilian government in 1966 accused the political class of corruption, alienation, and disregard for the rule of law. As knights in shining amour, the officers wanted to save the nation from a ruling class, which they claim had lost direction and was driving the country to its doom. The popular support the military received for the coup confirmed that Nigerians were long expecting such a wind of change to save them from the claws of the politicians of that era.20 The subsequent investigations ordered by the Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi-led government revealed corruption in almost all the federal parastatals, especially the Nigeria Railway Corporation, Nigeria Ports Authority, Nigeria Airways and the Electricity Corporation of Nigeria. The reports of the inquiry into the activities of these government agencies also uncovered widespread abuse of official privileges by most ministers, some of whom were later found guilty of misappropriation of funds as well as disregarding laid down procedures in the award of contracts by parastatals under their Ministries.21 The government of General Yakubu Gowon, which replaced the AguiyiIronsi administration through a palace coup in 1967, presided over the affairs of the nation at a time when unprecedented wealth from the sale of oil provided an undeniable opportunity for growth and national development. At this time, the military leadership was reputed to have remarked that the problem with Nigeria was not money, but how to spend it! Naturally, Nigerians expected that the boys in khaki uniforms would be above board in their conduct and management of the country’s newfound wealth. Unfortunately, the military leaders turned out to be no different from the civilians that

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 135 they had vilified and overthrown. At the time that General Murtala Mohammed took over from General Gowon in 1975, it was discovered that corruption had permeated through virtually the whole fabric of the military hierarchy and administration. The Federal Assets Investigation Panel of 1975 found ten of the twelve state military governors in the Gowon regime guilty of corruption.22 This forced the new administration to embark on a drastic cleansing exercise within the military hierarchy and throughout the public service. As General Mohammed fought to eradicate the scourge of corruption, corruption fought back with anger and determination. Less than six months after assuming power, the anti-corruption crusader was assassinated. General Olusegun Obasanjo, who succeeded him, probably lacked the zeal and determination required for continuing the battle. By the time he handed over to a new civilian regime in 1979, it was obvious that the culture of corruption had again pervaded the entire public administration in Nigeria. The soft-spoken aristocrat Alhaji Shehu Shagari, who emerged as president after the general elections of 1979, was too weak to reverse the culture. Under his watch, the then Minister of Transport Alhaji Umaru Dikko allegedly embezzled over four billion Naira of public funds,23 while state governors embarked on a large scale looting spree of the Treasury in a way never seen in Nigerian history. Unable to call his ministers to order or halt the decline of the country to economic insolvency, President Shagari was forcefully removed from office through a widely supported coup, led by General Muhammadu Buhari, on December 31, 1983. The Buhari/Idiagbon Administration rejuvenated the crusade against corruption, seeking to be recognized as an offshoot of the General Mohammed regime. The judicial inquiries and special tribunals that were set up to investigate and try corrupt public officers found many governors, legislators, and ministers guilty of corrupt enrichment, and subsequently sentenced them to various long terms of imprisonment. Although accused of high handedness and lack of respect for basic human rights, the regime was vehemently opposed by the entrenched demons of corruption it was struggling to exorcise. On August 27, 1985, less than two years into his crusade, General Buhari’s administration was toppled by another group of worried military officers led by General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida. The eight years of General Babangida’s administration have been widely criticized as the era in which official corruption in Nigeria became institutionalized.24 In fact, as many critics of the administration contend, not only did the regime encourage corruption by pardoning corrupt officials and returning their seized properties, the regime officially sanctioned corruption in the country. They made it difficult to apply the only effective measures of long prison terms and the seizure of ill-gotten wealth for fighting corruption in Nigeria in the future.25 On August 26, 1993, widespread criticism of General Babangida’s regime and the country-wide rebellion against his annulment of the June 12, 1993 general elections (believed to have been won by Chief Moshood Abiola),

136

S. U. Ogbu

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

eventually forced him to step aside from power, installing an Interim National Government headed by Chief Ernest Shonekan. On November 17, 1993, the interim government was ousted by General Sani Abacha, whose regime was alleged to have perpetuated the impunity and abuse of official processes in virtually all sectors of Nigerian public life. According to Ogbeidi: Under General Abacha, corrupt practices became blatant and systematic. General Abacha and his family, alongside his associates, looted Nigeria’s coffers with reckless abandon. The extent of Abacha’s venality seemed to have surpassed that of other notorious African rulers, such as Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire (now called the Democratic Republic of Congo).26 When General Abacha mysteriously died of a heart attack in June 1998, General Abudsalami Abubakar took over, but hastily returned the country to civilian rule as he did not have the impetus, desire, or political will to confront corruption. By the time Chief Obasanjo returned to power as a civilian president in 1999, corruption had already eaten deep into the concept of political leadership in Nigeria, and a culture of ignominy had been successfully entrenched. The eight years of Chief Obasanjo’s presidency saw corruption elevated to the status of a national art. Under his watch, federal ministers and state governors lost decorum and were alleged to have transferred public funds directly from the treasury to their personal bank accounts. The establishment of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission on September 29, 2000 and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2003 would have been more effective if the regime itself was not so mired in the dirt it was hoping to clean. Try as he might, the energetic and passionate anti-corruption czar Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, who was the first chairman of the EFCC, could not win the battle against corruption. His hands were tied by a dishonest regime that allegedly used him mostly to witch-hunt real or imagined political adversaries, and was not even there to protect him when corruption came fighting back. The exit of President Olusengun Obasanjo in 2003, amid controversies of a purported plot to extend his term ushered in Alhaji Umaru YarAdua as the next civilian president. The transition from Chief Obasanjo to Alhaji YarAdua is significant because it would be the first time in Nigeria’s history that a successful transfer of leadership had occurred from one civilian government to another without military intervention. Many Nigerians, who were expecting to hear the martial music of a military coup over the radios before the transition, were relieved, just as the corrupt public officers who had thrived in the preceding eight years of “kleptocracy” were smiling all the way to their banks. President YarAdua was obviously too sick and distracted to fight corruption, and in his incapacity, it was easy for his ambitious wife, in collaboration with his close benefactor Chief James Onafefe Ibori (who was later convicted by a British court for corrupt offences), to seize power and convert Nigeria to a land where bribery and disregard of due process would become the norm. The demise of Alhaji YarAdua on May 5, 2010 allowed his vice-president Dr. Goodluck

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 137 Jonathan to ascend to office as his replacement, and also to complete their joint mandate, which ended in 2011. Afterwards, Dr. Jonathan was elected president in the general elections of 2011 for another four-year term. Effectively, by default, President Jonathan was in office for two terms, and ran again unsuccessfully in 2015. If corruption was widespread and deep-rooted before his presidency, the last four years of Jonathan’s administration supervised the official institutionalization of corruption and venality in the Nigerian state. Frequently accused of complacency and lacking in the political will required to address the systemic corrosion of his administration by corruption, it is interesting to note that, under his leadership, no single ex-governor indicted of corrupt practices since 2007 by the EFCC has been convicted. On the contrary, indicted and convicted public officers were even appointed to sensitive political offices, while the cases against them were yet to be discharged. The failure of President Jonathan’s administration to take decisive steps toward the eradication of corruption has no doubt submerged the various achievements of his government, and if care is not taken, may eventually obliterate the legacies he left behind. More important, however, is the fact that his regime’s tolerance of corruption and alleged connivance with corrupt public officials created a climate that not only allows a culture of corruption and official recklessness to fester, but effectively rewards theft. The emphasis on corruption here is not to say that there are no other problems bedeviling the leadership process in Nigeria. There are many other issues that need to be addressed, such as intellectual competence, nepotism, mediocrity, and god-fatherism. However, the problem with corruption is like that of the proverbial mother hen that must be attacked for the chicks to scatter. The successful resolution of other issues, in a way, may either be hindered by the tackling of corruption, or tied to it. It is obvious that fighting corruption and the other vices hindering the emergence of transformational leadership in Nigeria is never going to be easy, but it is one battle that the nation cannot run away from if its sovereignty is to be preserved. In the search for true leadership, the Diaspora offers a veritable resource that Nigeria can explore to its immense benefit. Unfortunately, there are several problems blocking the effective participation of the Diaspora in the Nigerian political process, and it is important that the present administration resolves these issues if it is really sincere and interested in a robust engagement of the Diaspora towards national development.

Engaging the Diaspora for national development The fact that the Diaspora constitutes a fundamental and immeasurable resource base for the development of Africa is hardly in contest. The major concern has been how Africa can successfully harness and mobilize this latent energy for its growth. In recognition of the importance of the Diaspora in this regard, the African Union in July 2003 adopted Article 3 (q) of the Protocol on the Amendments to the Consultative Act. The Act pronounced the importance of the

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

138

S. U. Ogbu

Diaspora as a component of the AU and its processes, and declared that the African Diasporas will constitute the “sixth region”, in addition to the existing Regional Economic Communities.27 Although coming a bit late, this recognition is an important first step. It is widely believed that the development of a shared vision of industrialization in 1960 between the government of Korea and its Diaspora through the “We can live well too” program was instrumental to the transformation of Korea into one of the leading economies of the world today. In China, the engagement of the Diaspora was through a comprehensive and well-structured policy initiative that started as far back as the 1950s. Newland and Patrick observe that: Favorable policies including generous investment incentives were instituted at all levels of Chinese government to attract diaspora capital. The post1978 economic reforms, including flexible labor laws, efficient administrative procedures, tax incentives for investment, and massive investments in physical and social infrastructure have been endearing to the diaspora as well as non-Chinese investors. These together have boosted Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows from the Diaspora and increased bilateral trade between Diaspora host countries and homeland China. This way, the Diaspora was not a global scattering, but a cohesive community of overseas Chinese people, able to mobilize financial, political and diplomatic forces, with Beijing at its hub.28 Similarly, countries such as India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Mexico have long developed active partnership with their Diaspora to enhance socio-political and economic prosperity at home. Nigeria needs to key into this momentum, not by lip-service assurances of interest, but through concrete commitment to a welldefined policy of active and sustainable engagement. In this regard, a Diaspora engagement strategy built on a medium to longterm capacity with clear focus on the transfer of skills could be the initial entry point.29 The establishment of the Nigeria in Diaspora Organization (NIDO) and the Linkage of Experts and Academics in the Diaspora (LEAD) by the civilian administration of Chief Obasanjo are commendable efforts, but, clearly, more needs to be done. Without doubt, the critical sectors of the Nigerian developmental process require an infusion of new and vibrant energy. From education to health care, agriculture, engineering, architecture, and so on, the enormous skills of the Diaspora can be tapped to stimulate better productivity and effectiveness. Government will need to articulate a clear policy of engagement in this regard, one that will encourage and facilitate the transfer of technology and skills from the Diaspora to the homeland. Countries like Ghana, Tunisia, and Senegal are now working assiduously in this direction and Nigeria should not be left behind. The usual focus on compiling data on Nigerians living abroad, while necessary, has the tendency to become diversionary and routine if the statistics are seen as an end rather than a means to effective planning and action. It is possible, and therefore recommended, that highly skilled experts in the Diaspora be engaged

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 139 without the need of physical relocation and nurtured as networks instead of individuals by creating virtual interactions that could be designed to address specific challenges. Another important avenue through which Diaspora engagement could be used to stimulate growth is in the proper management of remittances. It has already been acknowledged in this chapter that Diaspora remittances to Africa may likely surpass ODA in the near future. However, while this huge resource is now recognized by most African states, only very few have developed institutional mechanisms to encourage and channel the flow to the critical sectors of their economies. In many African countries, including Nigeria, these remittances have remained largely private and un-coordinated, with little impact on government developmental initiatives. Ideally, any segment of society that as a group is an embodiment of a significant share of the region’s intellectual capacity and contributes $40 billion on an annual basis to the economy should have a permanent seat at the development table.30 Therefore, for Nigeria, articulating a policy that could create better partnerships and constructive avenues for directing Diaspora remittances towards the national development agenda is appropriate and urgent. Government could start by simplifying the processes for funds transfer, reducing transfer costs, providing strong incentives for investments in special sectors of the economy, simplifying the processing of land titles and property acquisition documents, providing tax incentives, issuing Diaspora bonds, and introducing strong policy reforms to guarantee the security of foreign direct investments. It is obvious that, if Nigerians living abroad could send over $10 billion home annually without any form of incentive whatsoever, they could also send a whole lot more if properly supported and convinced of the safety of their investments. Besides, the statistics available only cover formal and documented transfers, leaving out the heavy flow of informal transfers of funds that actually constitute the major bulk of Diaspora remittances. The exact amount of the inflow may never be known, but its potential for economic transformation must never be underestimated by any responsible government. Perhaps the most critical sector where urgent Diaspora engagement and assistance is required in Africa is in the area of political leadership. Since the end of colonialism, the failure of the ruling elites to provide transformational leadership, the proliferation of conflicts across the continent, and the collapse of socio-political and economic systems have left many African states weak and still struggling to survive. The prevalence of a culture of corruption, ineptitude, and flagrant disregard for the rule of law has been relatively common in almost all the emergent African states. It is possible that, because of jealousy, spite, insecurity, and even selfishness, the political ruling class in Africa has been reluctant to partner with their Diaspora to find a solution to the problem of leadership in their respective countries. It is also possible that the diaspora may have become reluctant to participate in the political liberation of their homelands because of certain institutional impediments both at home and in their host countries. Whatever the case may be, the gap between has become wider over the years, even as the crisis has continued to deteriorate. In Nigeria, the feeble

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

140

S. U. Ogbu

attempt to engage the diaspora through the establishment of NIDO and LEADS appears mundane and pale, especially when compared to what the “Asian Tigers” are doing to attract the support of their nationals living abroad. Apart from the provision of a contact desk for NIDO at the Nigerian missions abroad, the government has never supported NIDO to serve as anything more than an avenue for collecting statistics on Nigerians living abroad. The invitation to skilled Diasporas to serve in government in the area of their expertise, which has been a trend since the era of Chief Obasanjo’s presidency, is quite interesting, but definitely not sufficient. At best, its practice has been random, indiscriminate, and heavily politicized. At a time like this, the government should be able to offer more than this type of selective engagement to the Diaspora. There is need for a level playground to be created to permit and encourage active Diaspora participation in the political process. A good starting point could be through an electoral reform that will allow Nigerians living abroad to vote in elections. Such a reform will no doubt stimulate the interest of the Diaspora in politics at home, and also grant official recognition to them as a vibrant constituency whose support could become instrumental in winning elections. Another important but very sensitive reform could be the removal of the restriction on persons with dual nationality from holding certain political offices in Nigeria. The argument that this serves a security purpose seems obsolete and does not hold water anymore, especially when considered against the danger of depriving millions of skilled and well trained Nigerians of the right and opportunity of leadership simply because they have lived abroad. If anything, dual citizenship should be considered a plus because it provides a second window through which the documented experience and character of an individual interested in a political office could be comprehensively analyzed. Furthermore, it is suggested that government should, as a matter of state policy, provide incentives for the Diaspora to come home and actively participate in the political process. They should be encouraged to join political parties or even form their own associations as platforms through which they could seek to be elected or appointed into political offices. No doubt, their participation could provide a new pool of the human capital required for political leadership and the enrichment of the political process.

Conclusion Nigeria is a great nation with resilient people, despite the obvious institutional weaknesses, the series of failed leaderships, and a culture of corruption. The problem of leadership or corruption is not peculiar to Nigeria. So many other countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Europe are also wrestling with similar challenges. This chapter has identified leadership as the major problem facing Nigeria and corruption as the bane of the nation. However, it is important to note that Nigeria is a nation blessed with enormous material and human resources. For

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Diaspora and the leadership challenge 141 example, with a population in excess of 160 million, Nigeria is one of the most populous countries in the world, and provides home to two-thirds of the entire population of black people on earth. It is not surprising that the majority of black people living in the Diaspora trace their origin to Nigeria. What is far more important is that the country should be able to create critical linkages through which the potent reserve of skilled manpower, technological support, and financial assistance from the Diaspora can be utilized and mobilized for national development. Specifically, this chapter has highlighted the culture of corruption and its negative impact on the political stability of the nation so far. The failure of the political leadership was traced to corruption and a strong argument was presented for the constructive engagement of the Diaspora along the political and socioeconomic value chain. What the Diaspora can bring to the table is enormous, and should never be taken lightly or for granted. More than other groups in the political system, the Diaspora can ignite the positive energy required for cultural change. If given encouragement and sufficient opportunity to serve in leadership positions, it is possible that the Diaspora could overturn a culture of administrative recklessness with an imbibed culture of diligent service and accountability. While this may not be easy in a country like Nigeria, it is certainly possible. As they say, culture can change the people, but leaders can change culture!

Notes 1 International Fund for Agricultural Development, Sending Money Home to Africa: Remittance Markets, Enabling Environment and Prospects (2009), retrieved January 22, 2014, from: www.ifad.org/remittances/pub/money_africa.pdf. 2 United Nations Development Program, “Overcoming Barriers: Human Mobility and Development,” Human Development Report, 6 (2009), retrieved January 12, 2012, from: http://hdr.undp.org/en/reports/global/hdr2009. 3 International Organization for Migration, “World Migration Report”, Financial Times, July 16, 2005. 4 African Development Bank, The Role of the Diaspora in Nation Building: Lessons for Fragile and Post-Conflict Countries in Africa, 2011, retrieved January 10, 2014, from: http://documents/project-and-operations/2011-the role of the diaspora in nation building—lessons for fragile and post-conflict countries in Africa.pdf. 5 Andy Xie, China: Tales from the Middle Kingdom, Morgan Stanley, February 22, 2006, retrieved January 18, 2014, from: www.morganstanley.com/views/gef/ archive/2006/20060222-Wed.html. 6 African Development Bank, The Role of the Diaspora in Nation Building, 8 (2011). 7 International Fund for Agricultural Development, Sending Money Home to Africa (2009). 8 Onwuchekwa Iheke, “The Effect of Remittances on the Nigerian Economy,” International Journal of Development and Sustainability, 1, no. 2 (2012): 614–621 Online ISSN: 2168–8662—www.isdsnet.com/ijds. 9 African Development Bank, The Role of the Diaspora in Nation Building, 2011. 10 Chinua Achebe, The Trouble with Nigeria (Enugu: Fourth Dimension publishing, 1983), 1. 11 Peter Northhouse, Leadership Theory and Practice (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2007), 11.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

142

S. U. Ogbu

12 Martin Chemers, “Cognitive, Social, and Emotional Intelligence of Transformational Leadership: Efficacy and Effectiveness” in R. E. Riggio, S. E. Murphy, F. J. Pirozzolo (eds.), Multiple Intelligences and Leadership (New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2002), 128. 13 Douglas McGregor, The Human Side of Enterprise, (New York: McGraw Hill, 1960). 14 James Burns, Leadership (New York: Harper & Row, 1978). 15 Bernard Bass, Leadership and Performance beyond Expectations (New York: Free Press, 1985). 16 Ibid. 17 Bruce J. Avolio, David A. Waldman, and Francis J. Yammarino, “The Four I’s of Transformational Leadership,” Journal of European Industrial Training, 15, no. 4 (1991): 9–16. 18 Bernard M. Bass and Bruce J. Avolio, Improving Organizational Effectiveness through Transformational Leadership (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1994), 18. 19 Ibid. 20 Michael M. Ogbeidi, “Political Leadership and Corruption in Nigeria Since 1960: A Socio-economic Analysis,” Journal of Nigeria Studies, 1, no. 2 (2012): 27. 21 Rina Okonkwo, “Corruption in Nigeria: A Historical Perspective (1947–2002),” Africa Unchained (2007), Retrieved January 28, 2014, from: http://africaunchained. blogspot.com/2007/09/corruption-in nigeriahistorical. 22 Ogbeidi, “Political Leadership and Corruption in Nigeria,” (2012): 32. 23 Ibid. 24 Alex Gboyega, Corruption and Democratization in Nigeria (Ibadan: AgbaAreo Publishers, 1996), 48. 25 Ibid. 26 Ogbeidi, “Political Leadership and Corruption in Nigeria,” (2012): 34. 27 African Development Bank, “The Role of the Diaspora in Nation Building,” (2011): 12. 28 Kathleen Newland and Erin Patrick, Beyond Remittances: The Role of Diaspora in Poverty Reductions in their Countries of Origin (Washington DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2004), 14. 29 African Development Bank, “The Role of the Diaspora in Nation Building,” (2011): 14. 30 Ibid.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

9

The role of the Diaspora in strengthening democratic governance in Africa Kenneth Nweke and Vincent Nyewusira

Introduction Reflections about democratic governance in Africa elicit both a smile and a grimace at the same time. A smirk in the sense that frequent elections in the last two decades are a huge improvement from Africa of old with coups, violence and unconstitutional change of governments. On the other hand, there is grimace considering that the prevailing political environment in the continent is yet to be immersed in the culture, norms and values of democratic governance. It is on the basis of the latter that democratic regimes across Africa can be reasonably assessed or discussed within the context of what Steven Levistky and Lucan Way, as quoted in Yusuph Olaniyonu,1 referred to as “Competitive Authoritarianism.” The scholars wrote that, in a competitive authoritarian system, “formal democratic institutions are widely viewed as the principal means of obtaining and exercising political authority. Incumbents violate those rules so often and to such an extent, however, that the regime fails to meet conventional minimum standards for democracy.” They further observed that, although democratic states in Africa have constitutions and functional judiciaries, multi-party systems, periodic elections, etc., the incumbents violate rules of democratic engagement to the extent that most governments lack legitimacy. In most cases, election results rarely reflect the wishes of the electorate, because certain democratic institutions, such as election management bodies, security agencies, media organizations, and the courts, are frequently violated and manipulated to create an uneven playing field between the government and opposition. As quoted by Levistky and Way in Olaniyonu,2 “incumbents routinely abuse state resources, deny the opposition adequate media coverage, harass opposition candidates and their supporters and in some cases manipulate electoral results.” Keen observations of democracy in Africa show that the practice is reflective of competitive authoritarianism. In other words, the character of democratic regimes depicts the definition and attributes of competitive authoritarian regimes. As a matter of fact, little or no genuine efforts are made to safeguard the sanctity of the electoral process and institutions of democracy. In some countries of Africa, there are still no clear-cut succession plans and programs.3 Be that as it may, the situation created by competitive authoritarianism has its own contradictions; it usually

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

144

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

generates tension and sources of instability to the extent that violent outbursts are witnessed in several parts of the continent. This stems from the fact that the conduct of periodic elections and the presence of courts, civil society organizations, legislatures and independent media provide platforms for agitations and challenges by opposition forces. It is largely due to the controversy as to whether or not Africa aptly fits into the model of competitive authoritarian regimes that some writers tend or prefer to describe democratic practice in Africa as nascent democracy, fledgling democracy, or growing democracy. However, in the opinion of Olaniyonu,4 “the correct characterization of political systems in Africa is that the continent only transited from full blown authoritarianism to diminished authoritarianism or competitive authoritarianism.” No matter what the theoretical submissions of various writers are, there are distress signals that indicate that political systems in Africa are not moving toward becoming a true representative of liberal democracy. Africa has often been described as a social formation where elections have been turned to wars, and where politicians govern without legitimacy. In the same vein, Nnanna Anyim-Ude5 posits that African governments are organizing “elections,” but democracy is not taking root because the ruling party usually “converts the electoral officers, police, and other security agents into an awesome infrastructure of rigging.” It is against this background that this chapter explores the role of the African Diaspora in strengthening democratic governance in the prevailing atmosphere of “competitive authoritarianism.” From the foundation of the world, people have always left their homelands to live in foreign countries for social, economic, and political reasons. A relevant example is the emigration of the Israelites to Egypt thousands of years ago when there was drought. Also, there are some skills or expertise that are better appreciated in foreign countries. A classic example is the mass movement of African nurses and doctors to Saudi Arabia in the 1990s on the basis of better remuneration by the Saudi authorities. As a matter of fact, from the mid 1980s up to the 1990s, Africa suffered brain drain. African professionals in various fields, including medicine and technology, moved in droves to America, Britain, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and other places.6 These professionals genuinely believe they could get better value for their skills and qualifications outside the shores of the continent. The United Kingdom, for instance, has a program to attract African specialists through its highly skilled migrant worker program. People with huge financial and intellectual resources to invest in the British and American economies are also encouraged to live in these countries.7 There are also hundreds of thousands of Africans who live in other continents because the foreign climes are convenient and working to near perfection. Hostile and intolerant political environment in Africa have also made people seek and secure asylum in the United States of America, Canada, and Europe. It is these categories of migrants that we refer to as the African Diaspora. This chapter mainly addresses the opportunities and dividends that benefit Africa from the intervention and participation of the Diaspora in the politics and governance of Africa.

Strengthening democratic governance 145

Conceptual clarifications

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Diaspora In simple terms, a diaspora is a community of people living outside their countries of origin.8 In 2005, the African Union (AU) defined the diaspora as “people of African Descent and heritage living outside the continent, irrespective of their citizenship, and who remain committed to contribute to the development of the continent and building of the ‘African Union’ ”. Similarly, the AU defined “African Diaspora” as “the geographic dispersal of people whose ancestors, within historical memory, originally came from Africa, but who are currently domiciled, or claim residence or citizenship, outside the continent of Africa.” Geographically, the African Diaspora is a large population found in the USA, Europe, Canada, Central and South America, the Caribbean, Asia, Oceania etc. The population of the African Diaspora is yet to be determined. It was at the inaugural AU summit in Maputo that the AU formally included Africans living in the Diaspora as the Sixth Region of the AU’s organizational structure. The account of Foote9 reveals that: This decision to open the door to the diaspora is in part a recognition that today as many Africans now reside outside the continent as live on the continent. The decision also dramatically expands the reach of Africa into the purer corridors of Washington, New York, London, Paris, Rome, Tokyo, and elsewhere. From the narrative of Foote, the African Diaspora “have formed potent networks in cities where they live in the North and South America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, and elsewhere around the globes.” He further posits that Africans in the Diaspora “wield extraordinary political, cultural and economic power.” Based on this, the African Diaspora has the potential to support sustainable development and improve democratic governance in the continent. The African Diaspora, therefore, connotes an emerging and new paradigm in which relationships between those residing outside and within the continent are being fostered to speed up the development process. It has often been argued that, in the womb of the Diaspora, Africa’s best and brightest exist. They have different fields of expertise that could easily come together to find homegrown answers to the various issues facing the continent, including critical problems of leadership, food production and distribution, malaria, and AIDS. The different fields of expertise include political, military, diplomatic, economic, and social. Diaspora clearly spells out the interconnectedness of Africa and her people, where the destinies of people who live outside and the threat to those who live in the continent are interwoven. There is no gainsaying that, not only is a threat against any African a threat against all, but failure to deal with a threat against any African can undermine the defense against all the others. Therefore, the underlining principle of diaspora, especially within the context of the AU’s definition, is

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

146

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

simply that of shared responsibility, as well as shared interest among people of African descent and heritage. After all, Europe, America, or Asia will not develop Africa for Africans. Little wonder that the AU has committed itself to providing representation to the African Diaspora in its policy process in its amended constitution of 2003. The amended constitution, called the AU Constitutive Act, clarified the fundamental relationship between the AU and the Diaspora, and invited the Diaspora to join the organization in unifying Africa. Article 3(q) of the AU Constitutive Act states that “the AU hereby invite(s) and encourage(s) the full participation of the African Diaspora as an as an important part of our continent, in the building of the African Union.” The fundamental relationship between the AU and African Diaspora underscores the point that conceptualizations of diaspora must be able to accommodate the integrative mechanisms and impulses of connectivity from the homeland. This raises the question as to when new immigrants become part of the Diaspora. Zeleza10 suggested that not every migrant turns into a Diasporan. In his words; Many Africans who have come to the United States, for example, since the end of the Second World War, have done so for temporary periods, as workers, expatriate professional, business people, students, and tourists and often go back after the realization of their objectives. It does not seem to make much sense to regard such temporary migrants as members of the diaspora. A precondition, according to Paul Zeleza, for the transition from a migrant into a Diasporan, is “prolonged settlement, followed by permanent resettlement in a new host country.” In most cases, the diasporization process is a cumulative one, beginning with migration, followed by resettlement, and then reproduced through the offspring of the migrants. In fact, Zeleza categorized the African Diaspora into the “historic Diaspora” and “the new Diasporas.” While the former are those whose resettlement occurred in the past, the latter are those formed from the waves of more recent migrants. In regard to the above, it is no doubt that diaspora is a complex phenomenon. As a matter of fact, many Africans are yet to appreciate the connectivity between the Diaspora and their homeland, especially in terms of the extent to which the Diaspora can be a political and economical ally of governments in Africa. In the same vein, the Diaspora also has a negative attitude toward the African project. Sometimes, the African Diaspora believe that Africa is retrogressive, and openly canvass this view in important fora and media platforms, which are major sources of information and intelligence gathering. The danger, according to Bola Akinferinwa,11 is that when the Diaspora write and condemn the continent, it becomes obvious that the best of the world cannot but perceive Africa negatively. How this complex phenomenon called “Diaspora” can deepen democratic governance in Africa constitutes the problem of this study.

Strengthening democratic governance 147

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Democratic government There is a general consensus all over the world that democracy is the best form of government, even if scholars and practitioners are not in agreement with the definition, content, and form of democracy. It is common knowledge that a system of government is democratic if it is based on popular participation and not on exclusivity. Democracy is simply defined as the rule of the people, and requires the protection of basic liberties such as speech, assembly, movement, religion, conscience, and private property. It guarantees the rights of individuals to equality, justice, and freedom. Anyim-Ude12 affirms that any functional democracy must entail free and fair elections, rule of law, independent judiciary, virile opposition, organized political parties, and other strong institutions. However, he acknowledged that the conduct of free and fair elections is the strongest indicator of a country’s democratic content. In a historic address by United States President Barack Obama to the Ghanaian Parliament in 2009, entitled “Africa does not need strong men but strong institutions,” Obama made a critical point that elections alone do not make a democracy. He argued that a society with good elections that remained mired in corruption, abuse of process and general insecurity is, in fact, a tyranny. He concluded that, “the ballot box can deliver a desired candidate, but the business of democratic governance is even more challenging than the ritual of election.” Another point made by President Barrack Obama is that, while democracy remains a universal concept, it assumes local coloration in line with the history and traditions of specific countries. He declared that, “each nation gives life to democracy in its own way and in line with its own traditions.” He, however, underlined the common denominator of all democracies, which is obedience to the will of the people and adherence to the basic tenets of freedom of expression, rule of law, and sanctity of institutions, etc. These suggestions imply that democratic governance is about values, standards, and principles that have international acceptability. Kayode Komolafe13 clearly argues that democratic governance is achieved when the instrumentality of a democratic political order is employed to bring about development in all its ramifications. In other words, developmental questions can only be resolved within the framework of genuine democracy. In every respect, democratic governance depicts an ideal that yields positive returns in various forms to the people whom, ordinarily, sovereignty belongs to. John Dara14 said that the major positive returns of democratic governance on the political level are participatory politics, accountability, free and fair elections, representative government at all levels, and a system that offers opportunity for people to register their protests through the ballot box. The political contest of democratic governance essentially relates to the rights and powers of the people. On the socio-economic level, Dara posits that democratic governance yields an equitable distribution of the resources of the people among them at every level; this translates to employment opportunities, growth in agriculture and tourism, provides an enabling environment for business to thrive, creates an increase in

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

148

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

foreign reserves, provides adequate security, maintains social and physical infrastructure, and so on. The socio-economic aspect of democratic governance relates to the duties that the state and its various institutions owe the people. On a general level, democratic governance guarantees the economic, social, and political rights of the citizens. Matthew Kukah,15 for his part, considers the participation of the media, civil society, and non-governmental groups a sine qua non for democratic governance. A popular assertion from Ernest Gellner, a sociologist, is “no civil society, no democracy.” Similarly, Jessica Matthew in Anyim-Ude,16 while examining the role of civil society as an integral part of building and sustaining democratic governance, stated: they breed new ideas; do legal, scientific, technical, and policy analysis; provide services; shape, implement, monitor and enforce national and international commitments; and change institutions and norms. Accordingly, these groups “not only build society, but serve as a balance for government at all levels.” Both Dara17 and Kukah18 conclude that democratic governance does not exist if the aspirations and socio-economic well-being of the people are not comprehensively addressed. Painfully, throughout the continent of Africa, the “positive returns” of democratic governance have remained elusive. As Abdulkadir Abdullahh Mohamodu noted, what is visible in most African countries is the failure of leadership and steady slide into an apocalyptic state. African leaders are renowned for scuttling the electoral preferences of their people. For the most part, elections conducted in Africa are characterized by voting irregularities and the suppression of the opposition. The electoral malfeasances perpetrated by Mwai Kibaki of Kenya, Laurent Gbegbo of Senegal, Paul Biya of Cameroon, Omar Bongo of Gabon, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and the perennial shenanigans of Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, and others are cases in point. For our purposes, democratic governance has to do with the control or management of democratic authority, and how it is exercised in the governance of the society in accordance with the principles of rule of law, legitimacy, free choice, and accountability. To all intents and purposes, democratic governance presupposes good governance.

Theoretical perspective The systems theory, as espoused by David Easton, is adopted in this chapter. A system is the grouping together of functional related parts that are conceptually separated from their environment, in order to achieve some purpose. Easton is usually credited with pioneering the application of the systems theory to the analysis of the political process.19 In studying political systems from a systems perspective, individual parts are viewed as highly interdependent; the way one unit of a political system operates affects the functioning of other units. The environment of the political system

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Strengthening democratic governance 149 consists of those institutions found in the economic, social, cultural, and international systems which shape political process and whose activities are influenced by the political system.20 It is assumed that systems theory is comprehensive in the sense that it includes all the interactions which take place within the political system. Thus, a system is normally not closed, but open to outside influences. As Nekabari Ntete-Nna21 puts it, a “system is prone to influences from the environment and it may in turn influence events within its environment.” In the present era of globalization, where there is no clear difference between foreign and home peoples, the Diaspora functions as a sub-system of the whole, and contributes to the proper functioning of the whole. It is within the context of the foregoing that this chapter applies systems theory to understand and argue that the African Diaspora is a critical part, institution, or agent of strengthening democratic governance in Africa.

African Diaspora: agent of democratic governance The AU Constitutive Act of 2003 which “invite(s) and encourage(s) the full participation of Africans in the Diaspora” in Africa’s development, is a watershed in Africa’s democratization process. The invitation created the need for an institutional bridge that opened communication between the Diaspora and their homeland, and offered a more comfortable environment in which not only new relationships are built but also system theory operates. The invitation, which also heralded the recognition of the Diaspora as the Sixth Region of the African Union, aptly underscores the popular saying “you are not African because you are born in Africa, but because Africa is born in you.” The Diaspora recognized by AU captures all the descendants of people of African origin who left the continent, either of their own volition or as enforced slaves, living across the world. Africa has been experimenting with many reform initiatives. While a few of these initiatives have worked, the majority have simply amounted to an index of disgraceful misery. For instance, the neo-liberal policies of free market, competition, privatization, deregulation, etc. adopted by successive governments in most African countries have created economic and social conditions of poverty and poverty is antithetical to participatory democracy.22 Scholars have argued that the high incidence of electoral fraud, vote racketeering, political and voter apathy, electoral violence, etc. in Africa’s democratic practice is a function of poverty. Belinda Otas23 writes that countries such as Israel have become economical and political successes partly because of the active roles and contributions made by their diaspora through the use of remittances in eradicating poverty. During a ministerial briefing on the Nigerians in Diaspora Organization (NIDO) held at the National Assembly in 2008, Ambassador Joe Keshi, Permanent Secretary in the office of Secretary to Government of the Federation, revealed that members of NIDO remit about eight billion dollars to Nigeria on annual basis.24 Muktar Shagari25 also acknowledges that Nigeria, in particular,

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

150

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

has seen a quantum rise in the amount of foreign currencies remitted back home by the Nigerian Diaspora. He put the amount remitted by the Diaspora to Nigeria in 2008 at four billion US dollars, at a time home-based Nigerians take huge public funds out of the country. In the Netherlands, Diaspora migrants sent about 2.8 billion euro in 2003 through official and non-official channels. Much of the African Diaspora in the Netherlands is from Africa’s poorest and war-torn countries, such as Angola, Congo, and Somalia. Public services in these countries have broken down because of corrupt and irresponsible government.26 What these remittances mean is that the African Diaspora is contributing directly to the livelihood of many of Africa’s poor, and thereby helping reduce the level of poverty in the continent. In the words of Mohamoud: remittance has a considerable trickle down effect, and in almost every city or town in Africa, poor people cite remittance as one of their sources of livelihood: An important factor promoting this trickle down effect is the nature of the family organization in Africa. African families are still organized around extended family networks rather than the smaller, nuclear families typical of the West . . . collective reliance encourages individual family members, wherever they may be, to help and aid each other. And it is this tradition of mutual aid which obliges an African in the diaspora to send money back home to be, more or less, shared out by the members of the extended family. Thus, in this way, remittances provide direct benefits to many individuals who are at the bottom of society in many parts of Africa. 27 The point made here is that remittances from the Diaspora alleviate poverty in Africa. As we noted earlier, democracy cannot take root in Africa in a “climate of poverty.” Therefore, by alleviating poverty through remittances to Africa, the Diaspora is playing an invaluable role in promoting democracy in the continent. A corollary to the above is the admission of Foote that Africans in the Diaspora have also begun to wield extraordinary political and economic power, which, if properly cultivated, can be effectively leveraged to reduce poverty in Africa. This is the point also canvassed by Dr. Erieka Benneth in Otas when he said: The kind of returns you can make on investment in Africa, you cannot make it anywhere else in the world. Everybody is here in Africa investing except us, the diaspora, and that’s one of the things I’m really working on, championing, and helping our diaspora to see the potentials in Africa. There are vast opportunities here. The Chinese, Lebanese, and Indians are all here doing business in Africa—everyone but us, and that is one thing I think we need to wake up to. 28 Dr. Erieka Benneth is an African American and founder of the Ghana-based Diaspora African Forum Mission. There is no doubt that investment by the Diaspora in the various sectors of the African economy can bring immense benefits in the

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Strengthening democratic governance 151 areas of job creation, building up capital, sustaining small and medium enterprises, creating a middle class, promoting exports, building capacity, and so on. These benefits of Diaspora investment will contribute to the growth of the private sector in Africa in the short, medium, and long terms. Therefore, a combination of remittances and vast direct investments by the Diaspora will have an impact on economic and political development in Africa. According to Shagari, it is this type of intervention by the Asian Diaspora that “launched the Asian Tigers in the world stage.”29 Our argument here is that, by helping to achieve economic stability in Africa, the Diaspora is being supportive of democratic governance. Africa has been substantially plagued by a poor democratic culture and leadership failure. It is this leadership failure that elicits the concern of the African Diaspora upon the realization that destinies are intertwined and inextricably linked. As a matter of fact, the present era of globalization predisposes the Diaspora to act as a strategic non-governmental body in Africa’s democratic project. Globalization means that, in a borderless world, there is no clear difference between what is foreign and what is domestic, and between who resides abroad or at home. To this extent, weak democracies leading to poor governance have as much impact on those outside the continent as on the people in Africa. In other words, the African Diaspora is not and cannot be insulated from “the prevailing rule of the jungle and its misery index.” This is why foreign governments and global governance institutions are increasingly playing vital roles in instituting democracies around the world (some examples are in East Timor, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan). Therefore, as part of the “international community,” the role of the Diaspora in building strong democracies in Africa is not only essential, but also a political desideratum. In other words, the Diaspora cannot afford or decide to remain distant, aloof, and insensitive while Africa “progresses into a steady slide into an apocalyptic state.” Some scholars have maintained that Diaspora participation in governance will be the ultimate catharsis in purging Africa of the stigma of a failed region. Mohamoud articulates the growing realization among the African Diaspora that they have a responsibility to intervene in governance at a time at which “Africa regresses while the rest of the world progresses.”30 In his words, “this painful experience is a growing concern among African Diaspora who believe that they are in a position to contribute to development in Africa because of their presence at the centres of global decision-making in the West.” Strengthening democratic governance in Africa requires governmental and nongovernmental action. But, in the event that governments do not encourage free and fair elections, which are the strongest indicators of democratic content, the burden of building democracy falls on non-governmental organizations, such as the Diaspora.31 There is no doubt that the Diaspora has played a central role in the recent global debate about the preconditions for democracy and democratization. In the newer democracies, the diaspora focused attention on the need to foster a vibrant democratic culture in “souls traditionally inhospitable to good governance.” Also, the Diaspora facilitates peer review among countries in Africa by collaborating with civil society to act as the citizens’ watchdog, monitoring and

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

152

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

evaluating the institutions of governance and those elected or appointed to oversee them. The Diaspora can also help to fight corruption by frustrating moneylaundering and exposing the properties owned by public officers abroad. By collaborating with civil society to perform this critical oversight role, the Diaspora is informally woven into the network of governance to extend the administration of checks and balances within the political system. The role is without doubt crucial to the development and sustenance of democracy and good governance in Africa. Apart from the oversight values explained above, the Diaspora also supports their home government, particularly the legislature, by providing law makers with important information, research data and resource materials that will assist them in passing high impact legislation that directly and meaningfully impacts the lives of the people. Media organizations, as democratic institutions, have a lot to learn from the African Diaspora media that were unabashedly in the forefront in advocating the for independence of African countries and dismantling the apartheid regime in South Africa at a time when most Western media preferred Africa in perpetual servitude.32 Finally, the Diaspora improves the “leadership quotient of Africa. As a matter of fact, the diaspora’s intervention in governance is sure to generate a leadership program that seeks to bring the best brains around the globe to governance platforms.”33 We make this postulation on the basis that democracies all over the world have essentially profited from the concept of the circulation of elites. Pat Utomi34 confirmed that elites who come from advanced democracies, with developed leadership skills and other capabilities have moved into fledgling or nascent democracies, to demonstrate how states are governed in line with best international practices. The bottom line is that several exploits of the African Diaspora in various fields of human endeavor in Europe, America and Asia indicate that Africans are not inferior in intellectual capacity. Therefore, inclusion of the Diaspora in governments in Africa can only lead to a populace better educated in the decision-making process that in turn ensures stable democracies. Added to this is that, over a period of time, democracy comes to an understanding that what is best for everybody is to have an institutional arrangement that guarantees a level playing field. The end result of Diaspora participation in governance will be “brain-drain” translating to “braingain” in Africa.

Conclusions One critical measure of the African Diaspora as a self-conscious identity lies in identifying with and engaging the original homeland. This is because the identity of the homeland is, in part, constituted by the Diaspora. So, the cycle of reciprocities between the Diaspora and Africa must be seen from the point of view that the Diasporas are legitimate actors in Africa’s democratization process. In fact, there is documentary evidence that some Diasporas of North African extraction came back home to be part of effective civil disobedience and force the authorities to reckon with their views during the popular Arab springs in Tunisia,

Strengthening democratic governance 153

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Libya, and Egypt. The attitude presents the Diasporas as agents of change that support, encourage, and strengthen democratic governance through collaboration, representation, information exchange, and advocacy. Second, the essential part of democratizing means that boundaries have to disappear as groups and individuals seek context in which to operate. Based on these ideals, the Diaspora has a critical role in strengthening democratic governance in Africa.

Notes 1 Olaniyonu, “Elections Without Democracy: The Case of 2007 General Elections in Nigeria,” Thisday online, March 18, 2011, retrieved February 25, 2014 from: www. thisdaylive.com. 2 Ibid. 3 Olusegun Obasanjo, Africa: Challenges and Opportunities. A keynote Address Presented at the 2007 Congressional Black Caucus Foreign Affairs Brain Trust on Africa, Washington DC (September 2007). 4 Olaniyonu, “Elections Without Democracy,” (2011). 5 Nnanna Anyim-Ude, “Strengthening African Democracy,” Thisday, March 3, 2005. 6 Marx Amuchie, “Homecoming for a Robotic Ambassador,” Thisday, January 28, 2006. 7 Simeon Kolawole, “Would You Rather Wash Toilets Abroad?” Thisday, September 23, 2007. 8 Abdulkadir Abdullahh Mohamoud, African Diaspora and Africa Development, Background paper for AfroNeth, Amsterdam, Netherlands. December 5, 2003, retrieved February 25, 2014, from: www.diaspora-centre.org. 9 Melvin Foote, African Union’s Diaspora Strategy: Mobilizing a Constituency for Africa in the United States (2005), retrieved from: www.hollerafrica.com. 10 Paul Tiyambe Zeleza, “The Challenges of Studying the African Diaspora,” African Sociological Review, 12, no. 2 (2008): 4–21. 11 Bola Akinferinwa, “Citizen Diplomacy and Nigerians in Diaspora,” Thisday, November 23, 2008. 12 Anyim-Ude, “Strengthening African Democracy,” (2005). 13 Kayode Komolafe, “A Chicken-and-egg Issue,” Thisday, April 1, 2009. 14 John Dara, “Democracy in Post-independence Nigeria,” Thisday, October 1, 2010. 15 Matthew Kukah, Democracy and Civil Society in Nigeria (Ibadan: Spectrum Books Ltd, 2007). 16 Anyim-Ude, “Strengthening African Democracy,” (2005). 17 John Dara, “Democracy in Post-independence Nigeria,” (2010). 18 Kukah, Democracy and Civil Society in Nigeria, (2007). 19 Francis Enemuo, “Approaches and Methods to the Study of Politics,” in Remi Anifowose and Enemuo Francis (eds.), Elements of Politics (Lagos: Sam Iroanusi Publishers, 2005), 16–28. 20 Abdulsalami Ibrahim, “Public Policy; Concept, Approaches, and Processes,” in Isaac Obasi and Nuhu Yaqub (eds.), Local Government Policy Making and Execution in Nigeria (Ibadan: Sam Bookman Publishers, 1998), 1–8. 21 Nekabari Johnson Ntete-Nna, Contemporary Political Analysis: An Introduction (Owerri: Springfield Publishers Ltd, 2004). 22 Vincent Nyewusira and Kenneth Nweke, “The Impact of Globalization on Political Development in Nigeria (1999–2007),” A Journal of Contemporary Research, 9, no. 3 (2012): 186–201. 23 Belinda Otas, “Why The AU is Courting the Diaspora,” New African (2013) retrieved February from: www.newafricanmagazine.com.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

154 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32

K. Nweke and V. Nyewusira

Akinferinwa, “Citizen Diplomacy and Nigerians in Diaspora,” (2008). Muktar Shagari, “Nigeria: Dreams and Determination,” Thisday, November 9, 2008. Mohamoud, “African Diaspora and Africa Development,” (2003). Ibid. Otas, “Why The AU is Courting the Diaspora,” (2013). Shagari, “Nigeria: Dreams and Determination,” (2008). Mohamoud, “African Diaspora and Africa Development,” (2003). Anyim-Ude, “Strengthening African Democracy,” (2005). Chika Onyeani, “African Diaspora Media; African Leaders Have Started to Listen,” The African Sun Times, 2013 retrieved February 23, 2014 from: www.africansuntimes.com. 33 Pat Utomi, “Interview conducted in 1991,” Lagos Organization Review, 1, no. 1 (2005): 57. 34 Anyim-Ude, “Strengthening African Democracy,” (2005).

10 The Visa Lottery versus brain drain Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The impact of the African Diaspora on vocational artisanship Tajudeen Adewumi Adebisi And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it.1

Introduction God created the world for humans to live in, multiply, and replenish. This, humans are naturally doing. No person, world-over, has a choice in where they are born, either in America, Africa, or Asia, just as no person chooses the parents to whom they are born. Finding places for fulfillment in life influences the decision to emigrate to another country. In recent times, however, emigrating to another country other than one’s own has assumed another dimension, one that is different from the natural movement and settlement of men and women in different parts of the world. A situation in which the head of a household invites people (who are agile, skillful, and talented) from other families, apart from his own, to come and live in his household calls for caution. This same cautionary note should be sounded when we look at Africa and the Diversity Visa Lottery program of the USA. An African adage says, “He that is desperately hustling for gains is at the same time unknowingly hustling for losses.” This adage succinctly explains the inequity of the Diversity Visa Lottery. It is a way of “wooing” able-bodied men and women from other countries of the world to the USA. These able-bodied people consider migrating to the US a great blessing and gain, but indirectly it is a curse and loss to their fatherland left behind. This is because, while they use their talents and skills to bring about socio-economic growth and development in the host countries, the countries they left behind suffer a shortage of talented and skilled workers needed for much desired socio-economic growth and development. The real-life simple illustration to this is the so-called rural–urban migration that takes place, especially in Africa. After their education or training, the indigenes of a rural area proceed to the urban area to work, settle down, and build their houses. They thereby increase the population of the urban city. The urban city continues to develop, and the indigenes enjoy the provision of some social amenities at the expense of the rural area. It takes a lot of mobilization, sensitization, and incentives for people to come and invest in the rural area, whereas it is

156

T. A. Adebisi

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

this rural area that produces the “brain” behind the urban development. The migrants, in a sense, are not to blame. There is no one that does not like comfort, security, good job opportunities with good pay, and a favourable social, economic, and political environment. There are push factors as well as pull factors that aid and facilitate the unending exodus of Africans (and the skillful ones for that matter) from their fatherland. Both the push and the pull factors have negatively impacted the professional and vocational artisanship in Africa.

The Visa Lottery program: the concept and the reasoning behind it There is specific reasoning behind instituting the Visa Lottery program: the need for skilled personnel in certain fields. Kayode Ketefe affirmed that the Visa Lottery was designed to improve upon the multicultural composition of the US by recruiting people from countries other than the traditional sources of immigrants in Europe.2 This shows that the Visa Lottery could be seen as a legal political mandate to give skilled Africans the right to live and work in the US. The Visa is not for just anybody; it is for a set of people with specified vocational skills. The end result of the mandate is the extracting or draining of Africans with vocational skills into the US to service the already advanced economy at the expense of the growing African economies. Ketefe noted that experts are beginning to see the idea of the lottery as an attempt to recruit people with varied skills into the American economy, a development that has resulted in brain drain in most African countries.3 David Shinn states that some countries have designed visa programs to attract highly skilled persons from Africa and elsewhere while others actively recruit in Africa for skills in short supply.4

Brain drain and African in diasporas The brain is the center of intelligence and senses.5 The Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English defines the brain as “the organ of the body in the upper part of the head, which controls thought, feeling, and physical activity.”6 It is the thought of a person that originates or initiates physical activities. Every human activity, therefore, owes its root to the brain. Thus, any form of development in human society or any nation requires people with properly formed, developed, and functioning brains.7 Tajudeen Adebisi lamented that it is unfortunate that today these well-formed, developed, and functioning brains are allowed to be drained away from the African continent.8 Brain drain, therefore, refers to “a movement of large numbers of highly skilled or professional personnel from the country where they were trained to other countries where they can earn more money.”9 Brain drain also refers to moving away, flying away, and the flowing off of skilled and professional personnel who are Africans and trained in Africa. It includes those whose training was sponsored by different governments or organizations from Africa into other countries where they have better earnings and income coupled with better living

The Visa Lottery versus brain drain

157

conditions than they can get in Africa. The term “brain drain” may be defined broadly as the migration of trained and talented individuals from one institution in one country or part of a country to another in search of better working conditions, a higher quality of life, and/or a less hostile environment.11 Such migration may, according to the Scientific and Industrial Research and Development Center, take any of the following forms:

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

10

1

2 3

“Primary external brain drain,” which occurs when trained and skilled human resources leave their country to go and work in developed countries.12 This refers to movements across countries in search of “greener pastures.”13 The primary cause of external brain drain, according to Philip Emeagwali, is unreasonably low wages paid to African professionals. He lamented the contradiction of spending four billion dollars annually to recruit and pay 100,000 expatriates to work in Africa while the various African governments fail to spend a proportional amount to recruit the 250,000 African professionals now working outside Africa. He regretted that African professionals working in Africa are paid considerably less than similarly qualified expatriates.14 “Secondary external brain drain,” which occurs when trained and skilled human resources leave Africa—or any other less-developed region of the world—to work in other parts of the developing world.15 “Internal brain drain,” which occurs when trained and skilled human resources are not employed in the fields of their expertise in their own country, or when such human resources move from the public sector to the private sector or within a sector of a particular country.16 This can also be referred to as “interdisciplinary brain drain,” which refers to a situation in which a professional, because they could not secure a job or because of poor remuneration in their field or area of professionalization, goes to look for and secures a job in another field or profession.17 Emeagwali describes internal brain drain as when people are not employed in the fields of their expertise.18

Thus, many Africans in Diasporas are in the countries where they now reside, especially in the US, as a result of brain drain. There are push and pull factors facilitating the brain drain. Shinn argues that the cause of brain drain is a reflection of the complex and shifting interplay of “push” and “pull” factors that motivate individuals to leave one country for another.19 Ketefe is of the view that the brain drain is not facilitated by the US only. According to him, many European countries restrict general immigration from Africa while allowing only professional and technical African people to immigrate.20 There are many factors that have contributed to the exodus of skilled workers from Africa. Some of them are: poor remuneration and delay in workers’ salary payments, human rights abuses, misplacement of trained personnel, disregard for local talent, scarcity of jobs, limited access to education, poor healthcare services, and a high level of crime, among others.21 In the same vein, Fatima Rasool and Christoff

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

158

T. A. Adebisi

Botha listed the push factors to include crime, unemployment, equity, poor working conditions, poor service delivery, high living costs, declining education standards, an unfriendly business environment, low-income levels, and adverse political events.22 According to Ezekiel Ette, many individuals who apply and win the Visa Lottery see it as an opportunity to rise above poverty. The migration is from poor, politically unstable, and/or conflict-prone countries to those that have stronger economies, are politically stable, and offer good security.23 The journey to the United States for these people becomes a journey of hope.24 Ette regretted that, in Nigeria, individuals who have graduated from school are jobless and the country is not using them. According to him, many are underemployed and the opportunity to leave all that behind and start a new life in the US is what pushes these individuals out of the country.25 Ette’s stance is corroborated by Shinn, who asserts that a country with a weak economy, high unemployment, significant corruption, low wages, periodic famine and/or substantial poverty is a prime candidate for a brain drain.26 Emeagwali lamented the above scenario by saying that: Since one in three African professionals would like to live outside Africa, African universities are actually training one third of their graduates for export to the developed nations. We are operating one third of African universities to satisfy the manpower needs of Great Britain and the United States. The African education budget is nothing but a supplement to the American education budget. In essence, Africa is giving developmental assistance to the wealthier western nations, which makes the rich nations richer and the poor nations, poorer.27 In essence, unemployment or underemployment is one of the push factors that cause brain drain. Another push factor is political instability, which according to Emeagwali, increases the rates at which professionals emigrate to the developed nations.28 According to Maarten Woerden, gross human rights abuses and government cruelty toward citizens in countries such as Zimbabwe have forced many locally trained experts to migrate to less hostile countries. This has left not only Zimbabwe, but also many other African countries with a grave drought of skilled personnel.29 Closely related to the above is misplacement of human resources. This has contributed to what Bernard Logan has characterized as the “reverse transfer of technology”—that is, the migration of professionals from Africa to industrialized countries where they were trained and retained.30 Henry Kyambalesa lamented the disregard for local talent. He regrets that the unfortunate and common tendency among local and national governments in African countries to scout for expatriate scientists, technologists, and consultants from industrialized nations has made indigenous experts feel disregarded and they have become less creative as a result.31 George Ayittey observed that African leaders tend to have more faith in expatriates and foreign systems than in their own African peoples.32

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Visa Lottery versus brain drain

159

How do you then create job opportunities for the people in whom you do not have faith? The people have no other choice than to look elsewhere for opportunities, and the brain drain spreads unceasingly. The major pull factors are the positive factors that pull people to another country. They include attractive salary packages, early retirement in the education sector, opportunities to gain international work experience, improved lifestyles, and various career choices.33 Shinn identified a strong economy, peaceful political environment, high standard of living, ability to improve professionally, career advancement, and high job mobility, among others, as the pull factors that cause brain drain.34

Reducing the effects of brain drain on vocational artisanship in Africa From the beginning of time, Africans have been known to be hard working. Work formed, and even still forms, a major way of identifying individuals, tribes, and communities in Africa. The prevailing inflation and high cost of living in most African countries in recent times have undoubtedly been the initiator of the unending exodus of vocational skilled individuals from the African continent. The people who acquire vocational skills are not productively utilizing their skills due to the lack of the right economic and political atmospheres in most African countries. People with vocational skills that could contribute to both the industrial and technological development in Africa jump at the opportunity offered by the US Diversity Visa Lottery program, thus leaving behind a drought of vocational artisans. Reading through both local and web advertisement cuttings on the yearly Visa Lottery program, one will come across pre-conditions in terms of qualifications of the prospective applicants. The most common of these is the requirement that a Visa Lottery applicant possesses a vocational or technical skill before he or she can be eligible for the lottery. In all ways, advertisements for the Visa Lottery program are presented in particular ways to attract the vocational artisans who are already looking for somewhere to go, those who have vocational/technical skills, but are partially or not occupied. This category of people rushes in for the Visa Program seeing it as a way out of joblessness and poverty.

Examples of such advertisement cuttings Each year more than 50,000 applicants are selected for the lottery program in order to account for those that are unable to pursue the visa. Even if selected, some individuals are ineligible to obtain a visa, and thus being selected for the program does not guarantee that you will obtain the visa. The most common reason for being ineligible after selection is a lack of a high school diploma, or lack of two years of work experience in a job that requires at least two years of training.35 (Emphasis is mine).

160

T. A. Adebisi

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

DV Entrant Requirements Entrants must have at least a high school education or its equivalent, or at least two years of work experience, within the past five years, in a job that requires at least two years of training or experience.36 (Emphasis is mine). There is, therefore, no doubt that the harmful exodus of African vocational artisans has negative effects on the continent. The first effect is that of retrogression in the technological advancement in Africa. It is disheartening that Africa still remains a consumer of technological hard and software from the developed countries such as USA, China, Japan, and Germany, among others, when actually Africa is supposed to be producing such technology. The main cause of this is the fact that most people with the required and necessary skills for advancement in technology are exiting the continent to go and utilize the same skill in a country more disposed to the practice of their vocations. The African artisans are attracted especially by the value (exchange rate) of foreign currency such as the American dollar, Euro, and Pound Sterling etc., believing that they could come back home to invest in Africa with the money made in the Diasporas. Emeagwali warned against this belief by saying, “Money cannot teach your children. Teachers can. Money cannot bring electricity to your home. Engineers can. Money cannot cure sick people. Doctors can.”37 Emeagwali believes that the availability of money or wealth alone does not bring about development and advancement in technology. He believes that it is only a nation’s human capital that can be converted into real wealth,38 and emphasizes that human capital is much more valuable than financial capital.39 The drought of vocational artisans is another negative effect of brain drain that results from vocational artisans leaving the continent through the Visa Lottery. Most African nations are now experiencing a chronic drought of vocational artisans. First, many skillful and talented artisans trained on African soil left in search of greener pastures. Second, the youths remaining are not excited to be trained in vocational trades any more, because the economic, political and social environments are unfavorable, resulting in many able-bodied youths refusing to be trained for vocations; rather they prefer riding Okada (riding motor cycle for transportation purposes) to learning a vocation. In addition, many vocational artisans cannot practice the trades in which they were trained due to the outright lack of or irregular power supply in many African countries, especially in Nigeria. This drought of vocational artisans greatly threatens the future. Most African countries are not trained to service and repair the hardware imported from developed countries. Very soon, it will be hard to come by competent repairers of the ever new, branded, and rebranded technology being imported into the continent. Rasool and Botha lament the fact that skill shortages are major obstacles to economic growth and job creation in South Africa.40 According to Rasool and Botha, the term “skill shortages” applies when the quantity of skills, particular in the demand for work-related categories, exceeds the supply of these skills.41 They reiterated that a skill is associated with professional qualifications or occupations.42

The Visa Lottery versus brain drain

161

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The end result will be the inevitability of poverty. Knowledge, be it theoretical or practical, is the engine that drives economic growth, and Africa cannot eliminate poverty without first increasing and nurturing its intellectual capital.43 Rasool and Botha consider the emigration of skilled workers from Africa as a true crisis, lamenting that: Another worrying factor in South Africa is the role of emigration in the skills crisis. . . . South Africa is suffering a debilitating skills shortage. Its own skills production system is grossly inefficient, and skilled people have been leaving the country at an alarming rate. This worsens the situation. . . . The problem is not a new one. . . . South Africa lost six times more professionals and technicians than it gained. South Africa has lost approximately 20 percent of its skills through emigration. In addition, 70 percent of skilled South Africans consider emigrating.44 The stance of Rasool and Botha was buttressed by the Parliament of South Africa when it regretted that: The phenomenon of brain drain has not spared South Africa, with many skilled people leaving the country for various reasons. This has led to a skills deficit in many spheres. . . . One area which has been impacted most has been the health industry with doctors leaving these shores for greener pastures somewhere else. . . . South Africa, like many other developing countries, is finding it hard to encourage a re-focus towards artisan training among the youth.45 Poor service delivery, such as in building construction, automobile repairs and services, and other numerous fields requiring the application of vocational skills, cannot be overlooked as a negative consequence of the brain drain in Africa. The best of skillful artisans who could have rendered quality service as well as imparted good quality vocational skills to the up and coming generation have emigrated from the continent. This dire situation is more pronounced in vocations such as construction and building. In recent times, there have been continuous reports of buildings collapsing either at the construction stage or even once inhabited. Road construction is another area where low quality work is pronounced. Many countries in Africa suffer poor road networks with many roads that are not driveable—not because roads are not constructed, but because they are poorly done. Closely related to the above is the high cost charged by artisans for works such as building, carpentry, car repairing, tailoring among others in Africa. It is, however, disappointing that the high cost of a service rendered does not determine the quality of such service in reality. The cost of service becomes high because there are too few artisans to do the job. Many of the available few are not skillful enough to render quality services or good jobs. Why? The best of them have won the Visa Lottery and emigrated to the USA or Canada! Rasool and Botha reported that the loss of highly skilled workers through emigration would deplete the source of a country’s level of human capital and thus reduce the capacity of that country to

162

T. A. Adebisi

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

achieve as much technological progress as other economies.46 Wachira Kigotho emphasized that the loss of human capital affects the provision of basic services, drains fiscal resources, and reduces economic growth in some contexts.47 It is, therefore, highly regrettable that “African countries are funding the education of their nationals only to see them end up contributing to the growth of developed countries with little or no return on their investment.”48

Conclusion In conclusion, the deed has already been done, and many Africans in Diasporas may find it difficult to come back home. This is because factors that pushed them out of the continent in the first instance are still very much intact—there are not yet any improved situations to pull them back home. Those who come home to visit go back quickly in order to avoid becoming the victims of kidnapping and abduction for ransom. It is a common saying that the highest form of insanity is to continue to do things the same way and expect a different result. If we want to see changes, then we must be ready to do things in different ways. As long as the status quo remains, the brain drain will continue and vocational artisanship in Africa will continue to suffer depletion. According to Shinn, as long as so many African countries are troubled by weak economies, conflict, concerns about security, poor governance, and a lack of individual freedom, migration and the brain drain will continue to have a severe, negative impact on the continent.49 If necessary improvements in infrastructure and security are put in place, no one needs to campaign for Africans in Diasporas to return home; they will be attracted home by the improved conditions of their own accord.

Recommendations There is always a way out of every problem. It should be the target of every African government to ensure good governance in every way. Adequate security for life and property should be guaranteed. Opportunities should be created for young, talented, and skillful African youths to work and practice their vocations with good remuneration. Every African government should have faith and believe in their own people, and give them the same support they would give the foreign expatriates in terms of facilities, respect, and wages. They should stop treating their citizens as second-class citizens in favor of foreign expatriates. In addition, a regular and adequate power supply is essential for industrial and technological development and advancement of any kind. This, every African government should do without delay or the possibility of failure.

Notes 1 Holy Bible, Genesis 1:28 (King James’ Version). 2 Ketefe Kayode. “US Visa Lottery is Brain Drain, Modern Slavery,” National Mirror, November 17, 2013. 3 Ibid.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The Visa Lottery versus brain drain

163

4 David Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain, Paper Presented at the Institute for African Studies and Slovenia Global Action, Ljubljana, Slovenia, June 20, 2008. 5 Tajudeen Adebisi, Education for Better Living and Achieving Millennium Development Goals, Paper Presented at the third Conference on Multidisciplinary Research and Global Development, Society for Interdisciplinary Research (SIR), Lagos, Nigeria, June 16–17, 2009. 6 Longman Contemporary Dictionary of English Language (New Edition), (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education Ltd, 2014). 7 Adebisi, “Education for Better Living,” (2009). 8 Ibid. 9 Longman Contemporary of English Language (2014). 10 Adebisi, “Education for Better Living,” (2009). 11 Henry Kyambalesa, “The Brain Drain: Causes, Effects and Remedies,” ZambianEconomist. Retrieved March 23, 2014 from: www.scribd.com/doc/9695389/13/ Stamping-out-Corruption. 12 Scientific and Industrial Research and Development Center (SIRDC), An Analysis of the Cause and Effect of the Brain Drain in Zimbabwe, retrieved March 23, 2014 from: www.queensu.ca/. 13 Adebisi, “Education for Better Living,” (2009). 14 Philip Emeagwali, How Do We Reverse the Brain Drain? October 24, 2003. Accessed March 23, 2014. http://emeagwali.com/speeches/brain-drain/to-brain-gain/reversebrain-drain-from-africa.html. 15 SIRDC, “An Analysis.” 16 Ibid. 17 Adebisi, “Education for Better Living,” (2009). 18 Emeagwali, How Do We Reverse the Brain Drain? (2003). 19 Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain (2008). 20 National Mirror, November 17, 2013. 21 Maarten Woerden, Empires of the Future, an Ethical Exploration of the “Brain Drain” Issue. Accessed March 23, 2014. http://thesis.eur.nl/pub/12136/Master%20 Thesis,%20Empires%20of%20the%20Future,%20MH%20van%20Woerden,%20305 130.docx. 22 Fatima Rasool and Christoff Botha, The Nature, Extent and Effect of Skills Shortages on Skills Migration in South Africa (2011), accessed March 23, 2014. www.sajhrm. co.za/index.php/sajhrm/article/viewFile/287/336. 23 Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain, (2008). 24 Ezekiel Ette, “Is Visa Lottery a Conspiracy for Brain Drain?” The Punch on the web, November 7, 2011. 25 Ibid. 26 Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain, (2008). 27 Emeagwali, How Do We Reverse the Brain Drain? (2011). 28 Ibid. 29 Woerden Empires of the Future (2014). 30 Bernard Logan, The Reverse Transfer of Technology from Sub-Saharan Africa to the United States (1987) retrieved March 23, 2014 from: http://journals.cambridge.org/. 31 Henry Kyambalesa, “The Brain Drain: Causes, Effects and Remedies,” ZambianEconomist. Accessed March 23, 2014. www.scribd.com/doc/9695389/13/Stampingout-Corruption. 32 George Ayittey, Africa Betrayed (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1992), 111. 33 Rasool and Botha, The Nature, Extent and Effect of Skills Shortages (2011). 34 Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain (2008). 35 Immigration law office of Mark Carmel, Diversity Visa Lottery (Green Card Lottery) www.visalottery.com/. 36 Ibid.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

164 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49

T. A. Adebisi

Emeagwali, How Do We Reverse the Brain Drain? (2011). Ibid. Ibid. Rasool and Botha, The Nature, Extent and Effect of Skills Shortages, (2011). Ibid. Ibid. Emeagwali, How Do We Reverse the Brain Drain? (2011). Rasool and Botha, The Nature, Extent and Effect of Skills Shortages 2011: 8. Malatswa Molepo, “South Africa: Brain Drain and Brain Gain,” August 31, 2013. Accessed March 21, 2015. www.parliament.gov.za/live/content.php?Item_ID=3969. Rasool and Botha, The Nature, Extent and Effect of Skills Shortages (2011). Wachira Kigotho, “Migration and Brain Drain from Africa Acute,” UniversityWorld News, 11 October, 2013. Accessed March 21, 2015. www.universityworldnews.com/ article.php?story=20131011121316706. See “Brain Drain in Africa,” Facts and Figures, www.aracorporation.org/files/ factsandfigures.pdf. Shinn, African Migration and the Brain Drain (2008).

11 Revisiting Africa’s brain drain and the Diaspora option Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Gashawbeza W. Bekele

By failing to offer greener pastures for its own intelligentsia, Africa is committing suicide. Professor Edward Ofori-Sarpong, Former Pro-Vice Chancellor, University of Ghana at Legon

Introduction The migration of highly skilled manpower from Africa to developed countries has been a critical issue and an unsolved problem. Today, with the global knowledge-based economy relying on knowledge workers, the search for migrants with science and technology skills has intensified across our increasingly globalized and competitive world. Recognizing the importance of skilled manpower to achieve sustainable development and with a view to take stock of their position in the global economy, African countries invest a lot of money in education, despite their meager resources. Unfortunately, however, it is a cruel paradox of today’s world that a significant number of the highly qualified professionals migrate to more developed countries, and many more are in the pipeline. Most do so because of reasons beyond their control, such as a stifling social and intellectual environment, political repression and instability, and abuse of human rights, and others are in search of greener pastures. Scholars argue that unabated skilled emigration1 from Africa has a detrimental impact on the competitiveness of African countries in the global economy and their attractiveness for foreign direct investment. For instance, the former Deputy Executive Secretary of the United Nations’ Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Lalla Ben Barka, stated that: The emigration of African professionals to the West is one of the greatest obstacles to Africa’s development . . . African governments have a great responsibility to ensure that brains remain in the continent; otherwise, in 25 years’ time, Africa will be empty of brains.2 Recognizing the detrimental impact of skilled emigration, African countries have implemented various strategies to mitigate the tide of brain drain from the continent, ranging from restrictive policies to providing incentives for return, with

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

166

G. W. Bekele

apparently limited outcome. Failed attempts to restrict the outflow of skilled migration or to increase return has given rise to the exploration of alternative approaches that focus on the potential contribution of African skilled expatriates in the Diaspora to the development needs of their native country.3 This approach, often called the “diaspora option,” aims to augment the contribution of expatriates to their countries of origin. The diaspora option has become a new fad in migration and development discourse in recent years, and is promoted as a viable strategy to offset the negative impacts of brain drain by African countries, nongovernmental and international organizations, and the African Union. In fact, the African Union recognizes the African Diaspora as the “sixth region” of Africa, and urges nation states to put a concerted effort into building a strong and sustainable partnership between Africa and its Diaspora. The African Union employs a wide definition of the African Diaspora, which constitutes people of African heritage who involuntarily migrated to North America, the Caribbean, South America, and Europe (the “old” African Diaspora) and the recent migrants, primarily of highly educated individuals, who voluntarily migrated to developed countries mainly in search of better opportunities (the “new” African Diaspora). This chapter assesses the extent of brain drain from Africa, its impacts on development, and available policy options to mitigate its adverse impacts. It critically examines the ways in which the African Diaspora community can be mobilized in building a prosperous and democratic Africa. It also examines the major challenges in mobilizing the Diaspora community to utilize their human and financial capital for Africa’s development. There is a general agreement that the African Diaspora can become an integral part of Africa’s development and an important source of support in strengthening and reframing Africa relations with the rest of the world. However, the author argues that a detailed analysis of the degree to which the detrimental impacts of brain drain are offset by the contributions of the Diaspora is needed before promotion and policy making.

Brain drain from Africa It is appropriate at the outset to clarify the concept of “brain drain,” a term riddled with controversies and emotional undertones. Brain drain is defined as the movement of “professionals, technical, and kindred workers” or skilled workers from one country to another.4 It encompasses the permanent movement of professionals in search of better opportunities and the non-return of students after the completion of their studies. Brain drain entails a one-way movement of brainpower whereby the sender loses and the receiver gains. The concept of brain drain was first coined to describe the movement of skilled manpower from the war-torn countries of Europe, especially Britain, to the United States after the end of the Second World War.5 However, it gained popularity in the 1960s when the loss of skilled manpower from less developed countries to more developed nations became sizeable, and it has been a contentious issue in the North–South debate ever since. For instance, available data on

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 167 skilled migrants to the United States and Canada during 1969–1970 indicates that the proportion of scientists and engineers who came from developing countries was 46 percent in the US and 26 percent in Canada.6 The proportion of people originally from developing countries that work in engineering and science fields in the US has increased dramatically in the 1980s and 1990s, and reached 72 percent in 1995.7 It is also during this time that Africa emerged as one of the great suppliers of qualified professionals to the industrialized countries.8 The substantial migration, which commenced in the mid 1960s, has not abated, and Africans continue to be one of the major groups in the migration of professionals from less developed to more developed countries. Assessment of the extent of skilled migration from Africa has always been difficult due to a lack of uniform and comparable statistics across different nations. However, when you piece together various data available on the extent of brain drain, you will find that Africa has lost thousands of highly trained experts to the developed countries since independence, mainly in the 1980s when the continent faced an economic and political crisis. According to the Economic Commission for Africa and International Organization for Migration estimates, between 1960 and 1975, some 27,000 well-educated Africans left the continent for the West. Between 1975 and 1984, the number reached 40,000, and between 1985 and 1990, Africa lost 60,000 professionals (doctors, university lecturers, and engineers). Africa lost more than 30 percent of the highly skilled labor force during this time, and has been losing an average of 20,000 annually ever since.9 It is estimated that there are about 30,000 African PhD holders working in North America and Western Europe, 100,000 skilled experts in the US alone, and 250,000 in Western Europe, North America, and other parts of the world.10 Hence, nearly half of Africa’s skilled workforce is working abroad. Paradoxically, some 100,000 foreign experts are currently employed in Africa costing the continent $4 billion a year.11 One of the distinctive features of international migration from Africa to developed countries is that most migrants from Africa tend to be highly skilled. Several studies on the extent of skilled migration from Africa have confirmed this fact. For instance, Ikubolajeh Logan found the rate of growth of the professional migrant flow from Africa is higher than the rest of the world.12 A study on African migrants in the United States indicated that, although the number of migrants from Africa admitted to the US has been a small percentage of the world total, 74 percent of immigrants from Africa to the US (95,153 of the 127,853) are highly educated individuals. The same study has found that more than 60 percent of the migrants from Egypt, Ghana, and South Africa to the US have a university education and “migration of Africans to the United States with only a primary education is almost nil.”13 Another study found that, for Africa, where the average rate of emigration was 1.5 percent in 2000, the rate of emigration of highly skilled workers was more than seven times greater, at 10.4 percent.14 The largest numbers of highly skilled emigrants come from countries with larger populations, including Nigeria, Egypt, South Africa, and Morocco. Also, emigration rates of the highly skilled exceed 50 percent for

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

168

G. W. Bekele

African countries with small populations such as Cape Verde, Gambia, Mauritius, Seychelles, and Sierra Leone.15 A number of African countries have been hardest hit by the flight of health professionals. Zimbabwe has lost 90 percent of its medical school graduates since 1980. Some 1,000 professionals left that country in 1997.16 Ghana lost 60 percent of its medical doctors in the 1980s. Nearly 120 doctors were estimated to have emigrated from Ghana in 1998, and reports indicate that half of Ghanaian doctors are currently practicing in the United States. Estimates indicate that some 21,000 Nigerian doctors are now employed in the United States alone, and the figure reaches 30,000 if doctors working in other countries are included. Between seventy and 100 doctors migrate from South Africa every year. Estimates from Ethiopia indicated that about one third of medical doctors have left the country, and half of Ethiopian students who went abroad for further studies have not returned. For the continent as a whole, it is estimated that about 20,000 health professionals emigrate from Africa annually.17 In general, the forgoing figures indicate that the majority of African migrants tend to be highly skilled, and the magnitude of brain drain in Africa differs from one country to another country and from one sector to another. In addition, although the number of African professionals migrating to the developed north appears relatively small, such outflows are considered substantial when viewed in relation to the desperate shortages of manpower observed in the continent, and a disproportionately high rate of skilled migration from Africa. Given the increased level of interconnection between people and places throughout the world, free movement of information, reduced costs of transportation, and the demand for skilled labor in more developed countries, the outflow of professionals from Africa is expected to increase in the future.

Migration–development nexus: theoretical underpinnings The main challenge of African countries today is reducing or alleviating poverty and achieving sustainable development. Without a shadow of doubt, the availability of educated manpower is a formidable asset as African nations strive toward socioeconomic development and continued participation in the present highly competitive world. Lessons learned from developed and newly industrializing countries have shown the positive impact that a well directed and deliberate policy of investment in human capital has on their enviable economic and social progress. For instance, countries such as Singapore and Japan have excelled both economically and socially as a result of heavy and substantial investment in their human resources, despite having limited natural resources. Recognizing this fact and due to their unshakable faith in education as a panacea to development problems, African countries invest in education despite their meager resources. Unfortunately, however, the irony is that African countries that badly need their educated manpower to help them along the road of development are losing a significant number of their highly educated professionals to developed countries. After brain drain was discovered to be a major

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 169 setback to the development process in Africa and other less developed countries in the 1960s, it sparked many compassionate debates. While some downplay concerns over brain drain as “emotional nationalistic nonsense,”18 others consider it a legitimate concern requiring a serious commitment by sending countries to control the loss of their skilled manpower to developed nations. Brain drain is a complex process, and its effects are conceived with mixed reactions. However, two contrasting views, the nationalist and the internationalist, appear to be prominent in the debate. The nationalist model The first view, the nationalist model, bases its assessment of brain drain from the perspective of the human capital approach developed in the 1960s. According to the human capital approach, a country finances its higher education institutions through taxes to develop the educational qualifications, abilities, and skills of its citizens. This investment in human capital through education is made in expectation of general returns: that the individual is expected to be more productive to engineer the development of his native country and pay taxes, which will be invested in other sectors. With the migration of the individual to another country, the sending country loses out not only on the enormous investment of scarce resources invested in upbringing and educating the migrant, but also on the returns on the capital the country invested in the individual. The receiving country will reap the benefits of the skills of the migrant. The value of this transfer from less developed to more developed counties far exceeds the value of foreign aid to all developing countries.19 Recognizing this significant loss in human capital investment for sending countries, some strongly argue that the receiving countries should pay compensation to less developed countries.20 Based on the human capital approach, the nationalists argue that the competitive selection process of education in less developed countries tends to favor the most “gifted” and young people who are sources of leadership. The exodus of these innovative individuals (often called strategic manpower) who are essential for skill formation, education, research, innovation, planning, and leadership represents a significant loss.21 In general, the proponents of the nationalist model maintain that brain drain is detrimental to developing countries because, as Chungo Mundende noted: It removes the strategic manpower from key positions in a country, causes loss of present and future production, present and future saving, taxes and potential innovation. Brain Drain also involves the loss of money invested in education, training and skill formation of the emigrants.22 According to the nationalists, the outflow of scarce professionals leads to the continuous dependence of less developed counties on foreign expertise. It makes poorer counties poorer, and rich countries richer, perpetuating the vicious circle of poverty, dependence, and underdevelopment. Available data on foreign

170

G. W. Bekele

experts in Africa indicates that about 35 percent of Africa’s total official development aid goes to the 100,000 foreign technical experts employed in the continent.23

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

The internationalist model The second model, the international (cosmopolitan) viewpoint, on the other hand, contends that the world has become a market, and the migration of skilled manpower from one country to another is viewed as a free movement of one factor of production (labor) to where it will give greater productivity. From this standpoint, migration actually reduces the “excess” supply of skilled workers in the less developed countries, and ensures optimal allocation of unused and under-utilized human resources. Migration leads to the maximization of world production and welfare, and to the transmission of information and technology. Hence, advocates of this model recognize “brain overflow” in less developed countries rather than “brain drain,” and point to the oversupply of skilled manpower in some developing countries.24 The migration of skilled manpower from less developed to developed countries is often associated with relief from an unemployment problem, as these nations are presumed to have an oversupply of skilled manpower relative to effective demand.25 Thus, migration is regarded as a safety valve in reducing or eliminating the mismatch between available skilled personnel and jobs by distributing the underutilized or unemployed labor to where it is wanted. The scientific and other achievements of these underutilized labor in less developed countries can be realized when they are provided with jobs and other necessary facilities in the rich countries. Their outflow is considered as a relief to their native land, and a potential gain to humanity.26 However, this obscures the fact that some migrants are overqualified and remain unemployed or underemployed even in the developed world, a phenomenon called “brain wastage.”27 The internationalist viewpoint stresses not only the individual benefits that the migrant draws by migrating to the industrialized countries, but also his/her right to leave and return to his/her country. Closely related to this, they highlight the significance of remittances in terms of boosting the welfare of migrants’ families, promoting human capital, and providing valuable support to the balance of payments.28 The fact that remittances to the developing world exceed development assistance to less developed nations appears to be evidence for the beneficial impact of remittances to migrant sending nations. Therefore, the migration of skilled manpower from less developed countries, including Africa, is seen as a positive and constructive force that can bring about social and economic development throughout the world. Recent literature on migration of skilled manpower, which can be considered as an offshoot of the internationalist viewpoint, considers the relatively “free” mobility of skilled persons in the global labor market as an integral part of the globalization process. With the emerging interdependent global economy relying on an international exchange of labor, this literature uses “brain circulation”

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 171 (multidirectional movement of skilled manpower) as the most appropriate term rather than brain drain (unidirectional) giving an impression of symmetrical flows and benefits to sending and receiving countries.29 Closely related to this is the notion that advances in information and communication technologies allow expatriates the opportunity to transfer their expertise and skills to the country of origin without necessarily returning home permanently, through the creation of virtual networks.30 Implicit in both the brain circulation literature associated with globalization and brain mobility literature associated with virtual participation of the Diaspora is the idea that less developed countries are not in a position to effectively utilize their migrants’ talents, but can benefit from the innovative activities of their nationals established in more developed countries. Hence, the international movement of talent from less developed to more developed countries is arguably considered a win–win for all.

Reversing brain drain: policy options Brain drain from Africa constitutes a significant loss of economic, social, and human capital that adversely affects the development efforts of African nations. The effects of the brain drain phenomenon, however, vary widely from one country to another. Once less developed countries, including in Africa, became major suppliers of skilled professionals to developed countries beginning from the 1960s, they implemented various strategies to mitigate the tide of brain drain, ranging from restrictive policies to encouraging return. As the gap between less developed and more developed countries continues to widen, the outflow of professionals from Africa is unlikely to diminish and will remain a critical problem unless policy interventions to counteract the problem are made. Available policy options to mitigate the adverse impact of brain drain in Africa could be categorized into five groups. First, there are incentive policies designed to make migration less attractive by improving the domestic economic, political, and social environment. The main objective of this strategy is retaining or protecting the well-educated nationals from migrating by raising their salaries and improving their working conditions. However, given the scarcity of resources in African nations and numerous development objectives to be accomplished, African countries at present are not able to offer salaries and facilities comparable to the developed ones to effectively implement this policy.31 Second, there are restrictive policies, which call for tighter rules and regulations against the exodus of skilled migrants. These policies not only require stricter exit controls by African nations, but also the amendment of policies and regulations encouraging the entry of professionals by recipient developed nations.32 The restrictive measures are not realistic, for they deny the right of professionals to make useful contacts and gain ideas. There is no doubt that, without the international circulation of people and the resulting cross-fertilization of ideas, the world would be a much less attractive place. Developed countries also resist the policy of discriminating against skilled migrants in their immigration regulations.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

172

G. W. Bekele

The third set of policies proposes compensation agreements between migrant receiving and sending nations for the money invested in training and educating professional migrants.33 Compensatory measures to African nations for the loss of human capital could be extracted through taxing the migrants themselves, taxing the receiving nation, or through increased assistance and technology transfer to African countries.34 But compensatory policies are also problematic because it is difficult to measure the financial loss to sending countries. The feasibility of this approach was also questioned on legal grounds. Roger Bohning argues that taxing brain drain is inappropriate, for it assumes that every individual is an economic migrant even if individuals migrate for political or personal reasons.35 The aforementioned policies did not produce useful policy answers or have had apparently limited outcomes. This has given rise to the exploration of alternative approaches, which focus on the potential contribution of highly skilled expatriates in Diaspora to the development needs of their native country, that are collectively referred to as “brain gain strategies.”36 One of the brain gain strategies is the return option. This approach requires African countries to adopt policies and reforms that effectively encourage the return and integration of their qualified individuals abroad. The return of qualified migrants has been implemented in Africa through the International Organization for Migration with the assistance gained from donors and international organizations. However, the outcomes were apparently small.37 Finally, another promising approach that remains untapped by many African countries is the Diaspora option. The Diaspora approach focuses on the contribution that skilled expatriates can make to their native countries through virtual networks without necessarily returning home. This approach does not consider brain drain as a loss, but as a potential gain. This is because the significant flow of resources, virtually or physically, replaces and replenishes what has been drained away, and changes the brain drain into a brain gain. A very important component of this option is establishing an effective system of information, such as reliable Internet access, to facilitate the transfer and exchange of information and technology between network members overseas and at home.38 Since the return option is less likely, the Diaspora option is a promising strategy to turn the brain drain into a brain gain. However, its feasibility relies on a welldeveloped information system and incentive schemes, which many countries in Africa lack at this time. Thus, the success of this recent endeavor will be seen in the years to come.

Harnessing the African Diaspora In recent years, the African Diaspora is increasingly recognized a key stakeholder in Africa’s socio-economic development. The African Union is calling the African Diaspora to contribute to the development of the continent in what some scholars consider as “Twenty-First Century Pan-Africanism.” The African Union hosted the African Union Global Diaspora Summit in South Africa, a

gathering of the African Heads of States with a large population of Afrodescendants and thousands of civil society leaders from the African Diaspora on May 25, 2012. Representatives at the summit signed a formal declaration to collaborate economically, socially, and politically. The African Union promises to extend places for the Diaspora in various advisory committees, including the African Union Commission, and, ultimately, the Pan-African Parliament. Other initiatives touted by African Union and partner institutions include developing a continental database of African highly skilled migrants, and linking African professionals abroad with their counterparts at home by improving information and communication infrastructure, establishing an African Diaspora Volunteer Corps, creating an African Diaspora Marketplace to facilitate innovation and entrepreneurship, and establishing an African Remittance Institute. Harnessing the financial and human capital of the African Diaspora focuses first and foremost on the contributions of the African Diaspora in Africa’s development in the area of remittances. Africa receives $60 billion in remittances ($24 billion to Sub-Saharan Africa in 2012) according to World Bank estimates, which far exceeds official development assistance (see Figure 11.1). Given the evidence of underreporting and transfer through informal channels, the real amount could be up to 50 percent more. Also, Africa could save $4 billion annually if it brought down the cost of sending money, which was found to be highly expensive (12.4 percent compared to a global average of 8.96 percent).39 The relationship between remittances and development remains complex, and

450 Sub-Saharan Africa Developing countries

400 350 US$ in billions

300 250 200 150 100 50

20 13

20 12

20 11

20 10

20 09

20 08

20 07

20 06

20 05

20 04

20 00

0

19 95

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 173

Year

Figure 11.1 Official remittance flows to sub-Saharan Africa and developing countries, 1995–2013 (source: World Bank Migration and Remittances Factbook 2011 and World Bank Migration and Remittances Database).40

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

174

G. W. Bekele

is a focal point of debate concerning the costs and benefits of skilled migration. On the one hand, remittances have become important sources of scarce foreign exchange that boost a country’s balance of payment, a major source of income, and capital for investment in education, entrepreneurship, and health. Remittances also play a role in alleviating poverty and improving human development.41 Research on the use of remittances in Africa indicates that households receiving remittances have made productive investments in small businesses, such as beauty salons and restaurants, the purchase of land and farm equipment, and the building of houses.42 On the other hand, some development analysts maintain that remittances sent to African countries are typically spent on consumer goods, which is unproductive. For instance, a recent study on the use of remittances in Ethiopia indicates that 57 percent of the money sent by migrants is used for daily consumption with little investment in education and small business startups.43 This may promote a culture of consumerism and dependence. Remittances are also seen as unreliable and unpredictable sources of income whose result may have a distorting and inflationary effect upon the economy. How often highly educated migrants, who may be able to take all their family with him or do so shortly after their arrival, send remittances is also unknown. Another highly touted benefit associated with African Diaspora engagement is the transfer of technology and skills through virtual networks and skilled migrants returning on a short or long-term basis. The professional African migrants acquire a lot of experience and knowledge in the host country. Their return after being enriched financially or with skills means a great gain in the diffusion of technology, resource transfer, capital investment, and capacity building. The African Diaspora’s contribution in the areas of scientific innovation, technology, and skill transfer is made possible primarily through their involvement in professional networks that promote scientific research and capacity building in Africa via virtual or electronic communication, and through knowledge spillovers via social networks. In addition, the expertise of African professionals in the Diaspora can be tapped through short or extended visits to their countries of origin, which may lead toward their permanent return after acquiring education, skills, and work experience in the receiving countries. Harnessing the intellectual capital of the African Diaspora is strengthened with the permanent return of African professionals based overseas. However, the top priority in many circumstances is the identification of African professionals living abroad who would participate in nation building projects via virtual participation, such as via the Internet, without physical relocation, and assisting highly skilled African expatriates to return home for short visits, engage in various development projects, or undertake teaching assignments.44 Even though the Diaspora option is considered a pragmatic approach to turning brain drain to brain gain, Diaspora engagement in Africa tends to be sporadic and divided along ethnic or political lines. Other challenges include government bureaucracies, lack of mutual trust between the Diaspora and home governments, lack of political will to engage the Diaspora by African governments, duplication of programs, and lack of commitment and obligations of the Diaspora. Given these

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 175 and other challenges of harnessing the financial and human capital of the African Diaspora, the promotion of the Diaspora approach as the principal strategy of offsetting the costs of brain drain in Africa will be viewed with great caution in the years to come.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting the costs of brain drain Africa’s engagement with its Diaspora brings lots of benefits to the continent, but the positive effects of skilled migration are unlikely to be sufficient to compensate for the negative effects of brain drain in most African countries. The migration of highly educated manpower is detrimental to African countries in that it affects their competitiveness in the presently globalized world, and lessens their attractiveness for foreign direct investment by removing their comparative advantage (available trained manpower). To survive and compete in the present highly competitive globalized world, African countries need their highly qualified people to undertake research projects, innovate, and formulate and implement policies for economic growth and development. From the point of view of African countries, the primary loss to be considered is the loss of money invested in bringing the migrant to the level of skills and knowledge at which he/she becomes productive. The cost of raising and educating an individual is considerable. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) noted that “one person’s education through a national university is greater than a life time income of an average citizen.”45 According to the US Congressional Research Service, the US gained $20,000 annually on each skilled migrant from developing countries in the early 1970s. Extrapolating this “conservative” estimate clearly indicates that Africa’s loss in educational investment on the 60,000 African professionals who migrated between 1985 and 1990 exceeds $1.2 billion. Moreover, Africa has been losing $400 million every year for the 20,000 skilled migrants who have been leaving the continent ever since. A much closer estimate would, however, be the estimate by United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), which put a cash value of $184,000 on each African professional migrant aged 25–35.46 Related to this is the revenue forgone from taxation that would have been paid had the individual not migrated. This reduction in the tax revenue due to migration might lead to a long-run decline in the provision of public facilities, thereby lowering the welfare of those left behind. The “investment view,” however, has been challenged by scholars who view education as an individual right. Individuals have the right to leave their country for another where they will be productive, and have no obligation to pay back the money invested in their training or upbringing.47 The most important loss to the sending nation is also the reduction in the national output of the country. In the short run, the loss of highly trained and experienced experts from their positions is likely to cause economic losses until replacements are trained. In the extreme case, if a supervising engineer suddenly leaves a plant, machines and labor may remain idle until a replacement is found

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

176

G. W. Bekele

or it may result in inefficient operation. This will in turn result in the loss of productivity. Replacement of skilled people is a difficult undertaking in skilled manpower-deficient countries because their education is time consuming and expensive. The exodus of human resources with critical skills often has a substantial adverse impact on the productivity and effective operation of various sectors. It jeopardizes the ability of a country to use existing technology or produce new products, provide better quality public services, and train the next generation of highly educated labor. The loss of scientific experts means that African countries cannot develop their own technology, modify existing technologies, or apply imported technology to meet their demands. The former United Nations Secretary General Mr Kofi Annan noted the continued impact of brain drain in degrading Africa’s scientific and technology capacity at a conference on development of science and technology in Africa by stating that, “Africa’s share in the world’s scientific output fell from 0.5 to 0.3 percent between 1985 and 1995, and Africa counted only 20,000 scientists and engineers (0.36 percent of the world total) in 1992.”48 Africa as a whole only spends around 0.2 percent of its annual GDP on technological research and development in a world where innovation is the driving force of economic growth and development.49 The loss of academic staff from universities has a profound impact on university teaching and research and subsequently national development. This is because the knowledge, ideas, and skills produced in the universities are critical components of national development effort. Universities are producers of teachers, managers, engineers, and other levels of human resources. Thus, the migration of highly trained and experienced staff results not only in the deterioration of educational quality, but also the loss of potential leaders necessary to formulate and implement appropriate political reforms. The apparent result of questionable leadership and bad governance is often an increased level of political repression and apathy that, in a vicious cycle, results in the flight of more human capital.50 Brain drain also leads to considerable delays and postponements in the establishment and execution of development projects and programs. Projects for the provision of very basic technology and/or medical services suffer or have to be abandoned due to the shortage of skilled personnel. Nigeria, for instance, experienced serious shortages of health practitioners as some 21,000 Nigerian doctors left for the United States alone.51 The massive outflow of doctors and nurses from various African countries contributes to the deterioration of health services on the continent. Foreign experts are employed to overcome such bottlenecks created by the flight of African professionals, but cannot be considered a lasting solution because recruiting and maintaining foreign experts is costly.

Conclusion and policy recommendations Africa has been losing its skilled manpower to developed countries in the South– North migration of talent that commenced in the 1960s. The outflow of African

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 177 highly educated personnel is expected to increase in the future with increased globalization and the world’s knowledge-based economy relying on knowledge workers with science and technology skills. With a realization that the continuing flight of educated manpower could become a major setback for development, African countries have adopted various strategies, ranging from restrictive policies to encouraging return, to mitigate the tide of brain drain. These sets of policies aimed at curbing or managing brain drain and encouraging return were unsuccessful. Hence, in recent years, most policy makers and scholars advocate harnessing the financial and human capital of the African Diaspora for the development of the continent without mobilizing them from their permanent abode in developed countries. The shift toward harnessing the diaspora is a promising line of thought, as many of the policies to offset brain drain, including retention and return policies, failed to address the problem. The African Diaspora can contribute to development in Africa via financial, skill, and technology transfer, strengthening civil society, and lobbying western donors and governments on behalf of their countries of origin. African countries could potentially harness the knowledge and capabilities of their highly skilled professionals in the Diaspora by virtual means with a well-developed information system and incentive schemes. The Diaspora option is a very viable strategy, which could be mutually beneficial for sending and receiving countries. However, the promotion of this approach as the overarching strategy of reversing brain drain in Africa should be viewed with great concern. African countries have to be careful not to put the promotional cart before the much-needed analytical horse in regard to the cost of brain drain. A detailed analysis of how the Diaspora option offsets the possible adverse impacts should be fully examined before the rush to promote this option as a panacea to brain drain problems in Africa. In addition to engaging the Diaspora, policy prescriptions for reversing brain drain in Africa should take into consideration various feasible strategies. These strategies, at the outset, must address the push forces. Actions aimed at the creation of a very conducive economic and political environment at home are necessary not only to discourage further drain but also to encourage the return of professionals from abroad. Ensuring lasting peace and stability, consolidating good governance and rule of law, respect for human rights and democratic rights, and eliminating insecurity and barriers of academic freedom are of course important prerequisites for creative ideas to flourish and to retain educated manpower in the continent. At the national level, there is also a need for manpower planning strategies to ensure that there are skilled personnel commensurate with effective demand. This calls for the identification of the specific fields of expertise that are required to implement national development plans and effectively utilize existing human capital. Exploring the ways and means of maximizing the tremendous contribution of African skilled migrants living abroad by adopting appropriate policies and providing incentives to encourage return is also imperative. The return of qualified individuals, with their modern training and exposure to external environments,

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

178

G. W. Bekele

should be tailored towards enhancing the capacity of African countries to integrate into the globalized market. The apparent limited outcome of the return option so far, however, indicates that emphasis must be placed on fostering the utilization of the brainpower of migrants in the Diaspora by virtual means without mobilizing them from their bases. Last but not least, the issue of skilled migration from Africa and other less developed countries requires international as well as regional responses. Effective partnerships, dialogues, and cooperation are needed to address the problem to the extent of considering issues of compensation.

Notes 1 The term “skilled migration,” “brain drain,” “migration of talent,” and “migration of highly skilled manpower” will be used interchangeably in this chapter to describe the permanent loss of migrants from Africa who have tertiary educational qualifications or university degrees, or those with extensive experience in a given field. 2 Kalu Uma, F. E. Eboh, and Paul Obidike, “Managing Rural-Urban Migration and Brain Drain for Sustainable Economic Recovery in Nigeria: Constraints and Options,” Journal of Economics and International Business Management 1, no. 1 (2013) 2; Musa Kana, “From Brain Drain to Brain Circulation,” Jos Journal of Medicine 4, no. 1 (2009): 8–10. 3 Jean-Baptiste Meyer et al., “Turning Brain Drain into Brain Gain: The Colombian Experience of the Diaspora Option,” Science, Technology and Society, 2, no. 2 (1997): 285–315. 4 Ikubolajeh Logan, The Brain Drain of Professional, Technical and Kindred Workers from Developing Countries: Some Lessons from Africa–US Flow of Professionals (1980–1989), A Paper Presented at the Tenth IOM Seminar on Migration, September 15–17, 1992, retrieved on October 20, 2014, from: http://repository.forcedmigration. org/pdf/?pid=fmo:938; Lucie Cheng and Philip Yang, “Global Interaction, Global Inequality and Migration of the Highly Trained to the United States,” International Migration Review, 32, no. 3 (Fall 1998): 626–653. 5 Chongo Mundende, “The Brain Drain and Developing Countries,” in Reginald Appleyard (ed.), The Impact of International Migration on Developing Countries (Paris: OECD, 1989), 183. 6 For data on skilled migration from developing countries in the 1960s and 1970s, see Goran Friborg, Brain Drain Statistics: Empirical Evidences and Guidelines (Stockholm, NFR Editorial Service, 1975). 7 Jean-Baptiste Meyer and Mercy Brown, “Scientific Diasporas: A New Approach to the Brain Drain,” MOST Discussion Paper Series 41 (1999), retrieved October, 28, 2014, from: www.unesco.org/most/meyer.htm. 8 Augustine Oyowe, “Brain Drain: Colossal Loss of Investment for Developing Countries,” The Courier (ACP-EU), no. 159 (1996): 59–60; Tafah Edokat, “Effects of Brain Drain on Higher Education in Cameroon,” in Sibry Tapsoba et al. (eds.), Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (Addis Ababa: ECA/IDRC/IOM (2000), 174. 9 Press Release AFR/210 REC/84, “Regional Conference to Assess Impact of Brain Drain on Africa’s Development to be held from 22 to 24 February in Addis Ababa”, retrieved October 30, 2014, from: www.un.org/press/en/2000/20000217.afr210.doc. html; Uma, Eboh, and Obidike, “Managing Rural-Urban Migration and Brain Drain for Sustainable Economic Recovery in Nigeria: Constraints and Options,” (2013): 2. 10 Dejene Aredo and Yohannes Zelalem, “Skilled Labour Migration From Developing Countries: An Assessment of Brain Drain From Ethiopia,” in S. Seyoum and A. Seyoum, (eds.), Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Conference on the Ethiopian

Revisiting Africa’s brain drain 179

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

11

12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

26 27 28 29

Economy (Addis Ababa, Ethiopian Economic Association, 1997); Jau-Yon Chen, “Towards an African Information Society in the Digital Age: Prospects and Challenges,” International Journal of Development Research, 4, issue 8 (2014): 1565–1570. Meera Sethi, “Return and Reintegration of Qualified African Nationals,” in Sibry Tapsoba et al. (eds.), Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (Addis Ababa: ECA/IDRC/IOM (2000), 38; Tikki Pang, Mary Ann Lansang, and Andy Haines, “Brain Drain and Health Professionals: A Global Problem Needs Global Solutions,” British Medical Journal, 324, no. 7336 (2002): 499–500. Ikubolajeh Logan, “The Reverse and Return Transfer of Technology (RRTT): Towards a Comprehensive Model of the Migration of African Experts,” International Migration, 47, no. 4 (2009): 106–107; Logan, The Brain Drain (1992): 4–5. William Carrington and Enrica Detragiache, “How Extensive is the Brain Drain,” IMF Working Paper 98/102 (1998): 15. Abdeselam Marfouk, “The African Brain Drain: Scope and Determinants,” DULBEA Working Paper, Research Series, # N°08–07.RS, March 2008: 8, retrieved on October 29, 2014, from: http://dev.ulb.ac.be/dulbea/documents/1239.pdf. Ibid., 7. Sethi, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 38; Peter Stalker, The Work of Strangers: A Survey of International Labour Migration (Geneva: International Labour Office, 1994), 118. Sethi, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa, (2000): 38; Kana, “From Brain Drain to Brain Circulation,” (2009): 8. Harry Johnson, “An Internationalist Model,” in Walter Adams (ed.), The Brain Drain (New York: Macmillan, 1968), 70. Oyowe, “Brain Drain: Colossal Loss of Investment for Developing Countries,” (1996): 59–60. Jagdish Bhagwati, (ed.), The Brain Drain and Taxation; Theory and Empirical Analysis (New York: North-Holland Publishing Co., 1976). Don Patkin, “A Nationalist Model,” in Walter Adams (ed.), The Brain Drain (New York: Macmillan, 1968), 93; Van Hoek, The Migration of High Level Manpower from Developing to Developed Countries, (The Hague, Mouton, 1970). Mundende, in The Impact of International Migration on Developing Countries, (1989): 186. Oyowe, “Brain Drain: Colossal Loss of Investment for Developing Countries,” (1996): 59–60. Johnson, in The Brain Drain (1968): 70. Kenneth Hermele, “The Discourse on Migration and Development”, in Tomas Hammar, Grete Brochman, Kristof Tomas, and Thomas Faist (eds.), International Migration, Immobility and Development: Multidisciplinary Perspectives (Oxford: Berg, 1997): 133–158. Reginald Appleyard, “Migration and Development: A Critical Relationship,” Asian and Pacific Migration Journal, 1, no. 1 (1992): 1–18. Robyn Iredale, “The Need to Import Skilled Personnel: Factors Favouring and Hindering Its International Mobility,” International Migration, 37, no. 1 (1999): 89–120. Gerald Fry, “The Economic and Political Impact of Study Abroad,” Comparative Education Review, 28, no. 2 (1984): 203–220. Jacques Gaillard and Annie Marie Gaillard, “The International Mobility of Brains: Exodus or Circulation?” Science, Technology and Society, 2, no. 2 (1997): 195–228; Jean Johnson and Mark Regets, “International Mobility of Scientists and Engineers to the US: Brain Drain or Brain Circulation?” National Science Foundation Issue Brief, November 10, 1998, retrieved November 30, 2014, from: www.nsf.gov/statistics/ issuebrf/sib98316.pdf; Torsten Wiesel, “Fellowships: Turning Brain Drain to Brain Circulation,” Nature, 510, no. 7504 (2014): 213–214.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

180

G. W. Bekele

30 Damtew Tefera, “Revisiting the Brain Mobility Doctrine in The Information Age,” in Sibry Tapsoba et al. (eds.), Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (Addis Ababa: ECA/IDRC/IOM (2000), 66. 31 Mercy Brown, “Using the Intellectual Diaspora to Reverse the Brain Drain: Some Useful Examples,” in Sibry Tapsoba et al. (eds.), Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (Addis Ababa: ECA/IDRC/IOM (2000), 92. 32 Roger Bohning, “The Migration of Workers from Poor to Rich Countries: Facts, Problems, Policies,” Proceeding of IUSSP International Conference in Mexico Vol. 2, (Liege: International Union for the Scientific Study of Population, 1977): 307–318. 33 Bhagwati, The Brain Drain and Taxation; Theory and Empirical Analysis (1976). 34 Iredale, “The Need to Import Skilled Personnel,” (1999): 89–120. 35 Roger Bohning, “Elements of a Theory of International Migration and Compensation”, World Employment Program Research Working Paper 34, (Geneva, International Labor Organization 34, 1978), accessed from: www.ilo.org/public/libdoc/ ilo/1978/78B09_941.pdf. 36 Meyer et al., “Turning Brain Drain into Brain Gain: The Colombian Experience of the Diaspora Option,” (1997): 304. 37 Sethi, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 42–44. 38 Brown, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 93; Sethi, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 38. 39 World Bank Press Release, “African Migrants Could Save US $4 Billion Annually On Remittance Fees, Finds World Bank,” January 28, 2013, retrieved October 27, 2014, from www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2013/01/28/african-migrantscould-save-US4-billion-annually-remittance-fees-finds-world-bank. 40 World Bank, Migration and Remittances Factbook 2011 (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2011), 29; see also the World Bank Migration and Remittances Database, retrieved October 27, 2014, from www.worldbank.org/migration. 41 Dilip Ratha, “Leveraging Remittances for Development,” MPI Policy Brief, June 2007: 1–14, retrieved October 28, 2014 from: www.migrationpolicy.org/research/ leveraging-remittances-development. 42 Sonia Plaza and Dilip Ratha, “Harnessing Diaspora Resources for Africa,” in Sonia Plaza and Dilip Ratha (eds.), Diaspora for Development in Africa (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2011): 1–54. 43 The World Bank and Bendixen and Amandi International, Remittances to Ethiopia, October 27, 2010, retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://bendixenandamandi.com/ wp-content/uploads/2010/08/World-Bank-Ethiopia-Presentation.pdf. 44 Brown, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 93. 45 UNESCO, Manpower Aspects of Educational Planning (Paris: International Institute for Educational Planning, 1968), 74. 46 Pang, Lansang, and Haines, “Brain Drain and Health Professionals,” (2002): 499–500. 47 Yash Ghai et al., “Expulsion and Expatriation in International Law: The Right to Leave, Stay and Return,” American Journal of International Law, 67 (1973): 122. 48 Thalif Dean, “Development–Africa: Best and Brightest Head West,” Inter Press Service News Agency, Feb 9, 1999, retrieved October 28, 2014 from: www.ipsnews. net/1999/02/development-africa-best-and-brightest-head-west/: Sethi, in “Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa,” (2000): 38. 49 Yunusa Ya’u, “The New Imperialism and Africa in the Global Electronic Village,” Review of African Political Economy, 31, no. 39 (2004): 11–29; Chen, “Towards an African Information Society,” (2014): 1567. 50 Edokat, in Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (2000): 180–181. 51 Oyowe, “Brain Drain,” (1996): 59–60; Kana, “From Brain Drain to Brain Circulation,” (2009): 8.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Bibliography

Adeboye, Olufunke. “Transnational Pentecostalism in Africa: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, Nigeria,” in Laurent Fourchard, Andre Mary, and Rene Otayek (eds.), Enterprises Religieuses Transnationales en Afrique de l’Quest (Ibadan: IFRA, 2005), 439–466. Adeboye, Olufunke. “ ‘Arrowhead’ of Nigerian Pentecostalism: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, 1952–2005,” Pneuma: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies 29 (2007): 24–58. Adeboye, Olufunke. “ ‘A Church in a Cinema Hall?’ Pentecostal Appropriation of Public Space in Nigeria,” Journal of Religion in Africa 42 (2012): 145–171. Adekola, Moses A. “The Redeemed Christian Church of God: A Study of an Indigenous Pentecostal Church in Nigeria,” PhD Thesis, 1989, Dept. of Religious Studies, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. Adi, Hakim. West Africans in Britain 1900–1960: Nationalism, Pan-Africanism and Communism (London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1998). Adogame, Afe. “Contesting the Ambivalence of Modernity in a Global Context: The Redeemed Christian Church of God, North America,” Studies in World Christianity 10 (2004): 25–48. Adogame, Afe (ed.). Who is Afraid of the Holy Ghost? Pentecostalism and Globalization in Africa and Beyond (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2011). Agwu, Chinaka. “Acculturation and Racial Identity Attitudes: An Investigation of First and Second Generation Ibos,” (Master’s Thesis). (ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database, 2009, UMI No. 1469282). Akinrinade, Sola and Aderemi Ajibewa. “Globalization, Migration and the New African Diasporas: Toward a Framework of Understanding,” in Adigun Agbaje, Larry Diamond, and Ebere Onwudiwe (eds.), Nigeria’s Struggle for Democracy and Good Governance (Ibadan, Nigeria: Ibadan University Press, 2003). Akinrinade, Sola and Olukoya Ogen. “Historicising the Nigerian Diaspora: Nigerian Migrants and Homeland Relations,” Turkish Journal of Politics 2, no. 2 Winter (2011): 97. Amata, Josiah. The Nigerian Pentecostal Movement: The People, The Purpose and the Power (Lagos, Nigeria: Pillars House, 2002). Amate, Otu C. Inside the OAU: Pan-Africanism in Practice (New York: St. Martin Press, 1986). Andrews, George R. “Afro-world: African-Diaspora Thought and Practice in Montevideo, Uruguay, 1830–2000,” The Americas 67, no. 1 (2010): 83–107. Arthur, John A. Invisible Sojourners: African Immigrant Diaspora in the United States (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2000).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

182

Bibliography

Arthur, John A. The African Diaspora in the United States and Europe: A Ghanaian Experience (Farnham, Hampshire: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2008). Arthur, John A. African Diaspora Identities: Negotiating Culture in Transnational Migration (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2010). Azevedo, Mario (ed.). Africana Studies: A Survey of Africa and the African Diaspora, (Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press, 1993). Balogun, M. Oluwakemi. “No Necessary Tradeoff: Context, Life Course, and Social Networks in the Identity Formation of Second-Generation Nigerians in the USA,” Ethnicities 11, no. 4 (2011): 436–435. Bohning, Roger. “The Migration of Workers from Poor to Rich Countries: Facts, Problems, Policies,” Proceeding of IUSSP International Conference in Mexico, Vol. 2, (Liege: International Union for the Scientific Study of Population, 1977): 307–318. Brandon, George. Santeria from Africa to the New World: The Dead Sell Memories (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1997). Bratton, Michael and Nicolas van de Walle. Democratic Experiment in Africa: Regime Transition in Contemporary Perspective (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997). Brettell, Caroline B. and James F. Hollifield (eds.). Migration Theory: Talking Across the Disciplines (New York: Routledge, 2013). Capps, Randy and Michael Fix (eds.). Young Children of Black Immigrants in America: Changing Flows, Changing Faces (Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2012). Chaliand, Gerard and Jean Pierre Rageau. The Penguin Atlas of Diasporas (New York: Viking, 1995). Coe, Cati. “Transnational Parenting: Child Fostering in Ghanaian Immigrant Families,” in Randy Capps and Michael Fix (eds.), Young Children of Black Immigrants in America: Changing Flows, Changing Faces (Washington, DC: Migration Policy Institute, 2012), 265–267. Corten, André and R. Marshall-Fratani (eds.). Between Babel and Pentecost: Transnational Pentecostalism in Africa and Latin America (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2001). de Haas, Heinz. Migration and Development: A Theoretical Perspective (University of Oxford, International Migration Institute: Working paper no. 9, 2008). Dolo, Emmanuel. Democracy versus Dictatorship: Crisis in Africa’s Oldest Republic— Liberia (Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1996). Dolo, Emmanuel. Ethnic Tensions in Liberia’s National Identity Crisis: Problems and Possibilities (Cherry Hill, NJ: African Homestead Legacy Publishers, 2007). Ekpebu, Lawrence. Africa and the International Political System (Ibadan, Nigeria: Sam Bookman Publishers, 1999). Ellis, Stephen. The Mask of Anarchy: The Destruction of Liberia and the Religious Dimension of an African Civil War (New York: New York University Press, 1999). Fadayomi, Theophilus O. Migration, Development and Urbanization Policies in SubSaharan Africa (Ibadan, Nigeria: CODESRIA Book Series, 1992). Falola, Toyin. The African Diaspora: Slavery, Modernity, and Globalization (New York: University of Rochester Press, 2013). Falola, Toyin and Ann Genova (eds.). Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2005). Farris, Anne. “New Immigrants in New Places,” Carnegie Reporter 3 (2005) http:// carnegie.org/publications/carnegie-reporter/single/view/article/item/139/.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Bibliography 183 Fidrmuc, Jan and Orla Doyle. Voice of the Diaspora: An Analysis of Migrant Voting Behavior (ZEI: Working Paper No. B 02–2005, 2005). Gambino, Christine P., Edward N. Trevelyan, and John Thomas Fitzwater. “The ForeignBorn Population From Africa: 2008–2012,” American Community Survey Briefs Oct. (2014): 5. www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2014/acs/acsbr1216.pdf. Gboyega, Alex. Corruption and Democratization in Nigeria (Ibadan, Nigeria: AgbaAreo Publishers, 1996). Geiss, Imanuel. The Pan-African Movement: A History of Pan-Africanism in America, Europe and Africa (New York: Africana Publishers, 1980). Gifford, Paul (ed.). The Christian Churches and the Democratization of Africa (Leiden, NL: E.J. Brill, 1995). Gordon, April. “The New Diaspora: African Immigration to the United States,” Journal of Third World Studies 15, no. 1 (1998): 79–103. Gregory, Steven. Santeria in New York City: A Study in Cultural Resistance (New York: Garland, 1999). Hall, Stuart. “Cultural Identity and Diaspora,” in Jonathan Rutherford (ed.), Identity: Community, Culture and Difference (London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1990), 222–237. Halter, Marilyn. Between Race and Ethnicity. Cape Verdean American Immigrants.1860–1965 (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1993), 25. Hatton, Timothy J. and Jeffrey G. Williamson. “Demographic and Economic Pressure on Emigration out of Africa,” Scandinavian Journal of Economics (Wiley: online, no. 3, 2004), 465–486. Hermele, Kenneth. “The Discourse on Migration and Development,” in Tomas Hammar, Grete Brochman, Kristof Tomas, and Thomas Faist (eds.), International Migration, Immobility and Development: Multidisciplinary Perspectives (Oxford: Berg, 1997), 133–158. Hunt, Stephen. “ ‘A Church for All Nations’: The Redeemed Christian Church of God,” Pneuma: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, 24 (2002): 185–204. Iheke, Onwuchekwa. “The Effect of Remittances on the Nigerian Economy,” International Journal of Development and Sustainability, 1, no. 2 (2012): 614–621. Kalu, Wilhelmina J., Nimi Wariboko, and Toyin Falola (eds.). African Pentecostalism: Global Discourses, Migrations, Exchanges, and Connections (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2010). Konadu-Agyemang, Kwadwo, Baffour K. Takyi, and John Arthur, (eds.). The New African Diaspora in North America: Trends, Community Building, and Adaptation (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2006). Kukah, Matthew. Democracy and Civil Society in Nigeria (Ibadan, Nigeria: Spectrum Books Ltd, 2007). Lee, Helen (ed.). Ties to the Homeland: Second-generation Transnationalism (Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008). Leslie, Lourdes Medrano. “Immigration: Africans Find They ‘Have Everything Here’,” Minnesota Star Tribune, June 4, 2002. Levitt, Jeremy. The Evolution of Deadly Conflict in Liberia: From Paternaltarianism to State Collapse (Durham, NC: Carolina Academy Press, 2005). Levitt, Peggy. “Social Remittances: Migration Driven Local-level Forms of Cultural Diffusion,” Immigration Migration Review 32, no. 4 (1998): 926–948. Levitt, Peggy. “Roots and Routes: Understanding the Lives of the Second Generation Transnationally,” Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 35 (2009): 1225–1242.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

184

Bibliography

Levitt, Peggy and Mary C. Waters (eds.). The Changing Face of Home: The Transnational Lives of the Second Generation (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 2002). Lobo, Arun Peter. “Unintended Consequences: Liberalized US Immigration Law and the African Brain Drain,” in Kwadwo Konadu-Agyemang, Baffour K. Takyi, and John Arthur (eds.), The New African Diaspora in North America (New York: Lexington Books, 2006). Logan, Ikubolajeh B. “The Reverse and Return Transfer of Technology (RRTT): Towards a Comprehensive Model of the Migration of African Experts,” International Migration 47, no. 4 (2009): 92–127. Ludwig, Frieder and J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu (eds.). African Christian Presence in the West: New Immigrant Congregations and Transnational Networks in North America and Europe (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2011). Maher, Katelin. “Does Citizenship in a Host Country Influence Remittance Behavior? An Analysis of Ghanaians Living in the US, UK, Germany and The Netherlands,” (Master’s Thesis, Georgetown University, 2009). Manning, Patrick. The African Diaspora: A History Through Culture (New York: Columbia University Press, 2013). Martin, Tony. Race First: The Ideological and Organizational Struggles of Marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association (Washington, DC: Howard University Press, 1982). Mataferia, Getachew. “Ethiopian Connection to the Pan-African Movement,” Journal of Third World Studies, 12 (1995): 300–325. Mazzucato, Valentina, Nicholas Nsowah-Nuamah, and Bart Van den Boom. “Remittances in Ghana: Origin, Destination and Issues of Measurement,” International Migration 46, no. 1 (2008): 103–121. Meyer, Jean-Baptiste, Jorge Charum, Dora Bernai, Jacques Gaillard, José Granes, John Leon, Alvaro Montenegro, Alvaro Morales, Carlos Murcia, Nora Narváez-Berthelemot, Luz Stella Parrado, and Bernard Schlemmer. “Turning Brain Drain into Brain Gain: The Colombian Experience of the Diaspora Option,” Science, Technology and Society 2, no. 2 (1997): 285–315. Nyewusira, Vincent and Kenneth Nweke. “The Impact of Globalization on Political Development in Nigeria (1999–2007),” A Journal of Contemporary Research 9, no. 3 (2012): 186–201. Ogbeidi, Michael M. “Political Leadership and Corruption in Nigeria Since 1960: A Socio-economic Analysis,” Journal of Nigeria Studies, 1, no. 2 (2012): 27. Okpekwo, Isidore and Nkiru Nzegwu (eds.). The New African Diaspora (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2009). Olaleru, Olanike. J. O. Akindayomi: The Seed in the Ground: The Story of the Founding of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (Lagos, Nigeria: Father of Lights for Faith of Our Fathers Foundation, 2007). Olupona, Jacob K. and Regina Gemignani (eds.). African Immigrant Religions in America (New York: New York University Press, 2007). Onuzulike, Uchenna. “Identity Construction and Negotiation Among Second-Generation Igbo Young Adults in the United States,” Igbo Studies Review 1, no. 2 (2014): 125–126. Onwughalu, Obiefuna J. Parents’ Involvement in Education: The Experience of an African Immigrant Community in Chicago (Bloomington, IN: iUniverse Publishing, 2011). Oyebade, Adebayo. “Yoruba Culture in Contemporary America,” in Toyin Falola and Adebayo Oyebade (eds.), Yoruba Fiction, Orature, and Culture: Oyekan Owomoyela

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Bibliography 185 and African Literature and the Yoruba Experience (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2011). Plaza, Sonia and Dilip Ratha. “Harnessing Diaspora Resources for Africa,” in Sonia Plaza and Timothy Raeymaekers, Collapse or Order? Questioning State Collapse in Africa (Ghent: Conflict Research Group: Ghent University Press, 2007). Reynolds, Edward. Stand the Storm: A History of the Atlantic Slave Trade (New York: Allison & Bushy, 1986). Reynolds, Rachel. “Igbo Professional Migratory Orders, Hometown Associations and Ethnicity in the USA,” Global Networks 9, no. 2 (2009): 209–212. Safran, William. “Diasporas in Modern Societies: Myths of Homeland and Return,” Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies 1, no. 1 (1991): 83–99. Sawyer, Amos. Beyond Plunder: Towards Democratic Governance in Liberia (Boulder, CO: Lynn Rienner Publishers, 2005). Schiller, Nina Glick (ed.). Towards a Transnational Perspective on Migration (New York: New York Academic Press, 1996). Schiller, Nina Glick, Linda Basch, and Cristina Szanton Blanc. “From Immigrant to Transmigrant: Theorizing Transnational Migration,” Anthropological Quarterly 68, no. 1 (1995): 48–63. Sernett, Milton C. Black Religion in American Evangelism: White Protestantism, Plantation Missions and the Flowering of Negro Christianity 1787–1865 (Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1981). Shain, Yossi. “Ethnic Diasporas and US Foreign Policy,” Political Studies Quarterly 109, no. 5 (1995): 811–841. Sheffer, Gabriel (ed.). Modern Diasporas in International Politics (London: Croom Helm Ltd, 1986). Sorensen, Ninna Nyberg. Living Across World: Diaspora, Development and Transnational Engagement (Geneva: International Organization for Migration, 2007). Stiglitz, Joseph E. Globalization and its Discontents (New York: Norton & Co., 2002). Tapsoba, Sibry, Sabiou Kassoum, and Pascal Houenou (eds.). Brain Drain and Capacity Building in Africa (Addis Ababa: ECA/IDRC/IOM, 2000). Tarr, Bryon. “Founding the Liberia Action Party,” Liberia Studies Journal XV, no. 1 (1990): 13–41. Taylor, James L. Black Nationalism in the United States: From Malcolm X to Barack Obama (New York: Lynne Rienner, 2011). Teferra, Damtew. “Brain Circulation: Unparalleled Opportunities, Underlying Challenges, and Outdated Presumptions,” Journal of Studies in International Education 9, no. 3 (2005). Thomas, Kevin J. A. “What Explains the Increasing Trend in African Emigration to the United States,” International Migration Review 45, no. 1 (2011): 3. Uduku, Ola. “The Socio-Economic Basis of a Diaspora Community: Igwe Bu Ike,” Review of African Political Economy, 29 (2002): 301–302. Ukah, Asonzeh F. K. Globalisation of Pentecostalism in Africa: Evidence from the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) (Ibadan, Nigeria: IFRA, 2005). Ukah, Asonzeh F. K. A New Paradigm of Pentecostal Power: A Study of the Redeemed Christian Church of God in Nigeria (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2008). Uma, Kalu, F. E. Eboh, and Paul Obidike. “Managing Rural–Urban Migration and Brain Drain for Sustainable Economic Recovery in Nigeria: Constraints and Options,” Journal of Economics and International Business Management 1, no. 1 (2013): 1–7. Uya, Okon. African Diaspora and the Black Experience in New World Slavery (Lagos, Nigeria: Third Press Publications, 1992).

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

186

Bibliography

Vimalarajah, Luxshi and Rudhramoorthy Cheran. Empowering Diasporas: The Dynamics of Post-War Transitional Tamil Politics (Berlin: Berghof Conflict Research Occasional Paper, no. 31, 2010), 10. Wagner, Peter C. and Joseph Thompson (eds.). Out of Africa: How the Spiritual Explosion Among Nigerians is Impacting the World (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 2005). Walter, Ronald W. Pan-Africanism in the African Diaspora: An Analysis of Modern Political Movements (Detroit, MI: Wayne State Press, 1993). Weiner, Myron (ed.). International Migration and Security (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2003). Whitaker, Beth E. “The Politics of Home: Dual Citizenship and the African Diaspora,” International Migration Review 45, no. 5 (2011): 755–783. Ya’u, Yunusa. “The New Imperialism and Africa in the Global Electronic Village,” Review of African Political Economy 31, no. 39 (2004): 2–54. Yeboah, Ian E. A. Black African Neo-Diaspora: Ghanaian Immigrant Experiences in the Greater Cincinnati, Ohio, Area (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2008). Zeleza, Paul Tiyambe (ed.). The Study of Africa: Global and Transnational Engagements (Dakar: Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa, 2007). Zeleza, Paul Tiyambe. “The Challenges of Studying the African Diaspora,” African Sociological Review 12, no. 2 (2008): 4–21. Zeleza, Paul Tiyambe. “African Diasporas: Toward a Global History,” African Studies Review 53, no. 1 (2010): 1–19. Zewde, Bahru. A History of Modern Ethiopia 1855–1974 (London: Currey Publishers, 1991). Zhou, Min. “Growing up American: The Challenge Confronting Immigrant Children and Children of Immigrants,” Annual Review of Sociology 23 (1997): 64–65.

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Index

Page numbers in italics denote tables, those in bold denote figures. Abacha, General Sani 136 Abubakar, General Abudsalami 136 Adebisi, Tajudeen Adewumi 7, 156 Adeboye, O. 57n25 African Pentecostal influence 46; leaders 47 African Pentecostalism 42 African Pentecostals 47 African religious diaspora 5; space 45, 49; tradition 46, 55 African-born 1–2, 149; community 42, 45; immigrants 4, 41, 47, 51, 55; Muslim community 46; Pentecostals 52; population 2, 3–4, 42, 48–9, 53 AfroBarometer project 82 Agape House Church in Nashville 44, 48–50, 52, 53, 54–5, 58n30; RCCG workshop series 54; see also Redeemed Christian Church of God Akinrinade, S. 101, 104n17 Amazing Grace Sudanese Lutheran Church, LCMS (South Sudan) 51 American Colonization Society (ACS) 59, 65; white agents 72n8 American plantations 15–16 Americo-Liberia 72n8; leadership 61, 65 Americo-Liberian 67; descent 62; elite 65; hegemony 67 Americo-Liberians 65, 68 Andrews, D. 69, 73n35 Angola 150 anti-corruption 135–6 anti-globalization movement 13 Arab springs 152 Arabs 15, 43 Arthur, J.A. 113 Asian 131; Tigers 140, 151

Asians 15, 43, 56n10, 65 asylum 144; asylees 4; grantees 2; seekers 63 Atta-Mills, President John Evans 108, 123 Back-to-Africa movements 64; see also return home Balogun, M.O. 31 Biafra 33 Biafran–Nigerian Civil War 30 Biya, Paul (Cameroon) 148 black 11, 32; Atlantic history 1, 5; churches 47; emigrants 72n8; HBCUs 44; immigrants 29; people 12, 141; populations 14, 99; race 13 blacks 14; African-born 1; American-born 2 Bohning, R. 172 Bongo, Omar (Gabon) 148 brain drain 7, 61, 69, 104n26, 130–1, 158–9, 162, 165, 167, 169–70, 174, 176, 178n1; African 103n9, 104n11, 129, 144, 152, 156, 168, 175; negative effect 160–1, 166; primary or secondary external 157; reversing 171, 177; taxing 172 brain gain 69, 104n26, 130, 152, 163n14, 164n45, 174; strategies 172 Bratton, M. 66 Brazil 64, 99; Afro-Brazilians 99 Brettell, C. 74 Bropleh, Dr Lawrence (Minister for Information, Culture and Tourism) 68 Burmese 43 Cameroon 101, 148; brain drain 178n8 capitalist 16; anti-capitalist 13, 108; international 21–2

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

188

Index

Caribbean 15, 17, 100, 145, 166 children 37, 53, 80, 85, 93, 120, 123, 160; born to Nigerian immigrant parents 31; development of ethnic identification 38; of Filipino immigrants 31, 39n6; of foreigners, Ghanaian 113; newly born 54; second-generation 29, 112; of undocumented immigrants 44; US-born 100 citizenship 99, 127n28, 145; American 4, 68, 117; Canadian 95n5; laws 68; Liberian 68, 73n33; policies affecting 94; United States Citizenship and Immigration Services 72n15; see also dual-citizenship Cold War 100; era 21 colonial era 24; anti-colonial movement 13; legacy 59; masters 16, 19; pre- or post-colonial 101; rule 129 consumption 174; conspicuous 61 corrupt 136–7; government 150; practice 66; public officers 135; religious beliefs 17 corruption 69, 121, 130, 134, 136, 147, 152, 158; culture of 135, 137, 139–41 coup 62, 134, 136, 143; widely supported 135 coup d’état 109; CIA-backed 108 Cuba 99–100; Afro-Cubans 99; Cuban lobby 69 Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) 129, 136, 150; Congo basin 11; Congolese communities 52; Fountain Ramah International Church 51 Department of Homeland Security 2, 4, 8n7 development 4, 7, 61, 69, 85, 86, 88, 101–2, 139, 147, 151, 168; after independence 109; assistance 107, 131–2, 170, 173; children’s 38; of the continent 99; of democracy 152; economic 175; efforts 59, 171; goals 71; homeland 66; of host country 103, 155; human 85, 87, 130, 174; industrial 100, 138; Institutional Development Fund Grant 83; international 69; International Development Association 70; of multicultural attitudes 89; national 134, 137, 141, 177; of pan-Africanism 5; political 53, 98; process 145, 169; professional 67, 80; sustainable 146, 165; technological 159–60, 162, 176; urban 156

development in Africa 6–7, 137, 149, 165, 173, 178n9; of the continent 145; contribute 177; economic and political 151; Ghana’s 121–2; homeland 130; industrial and technological 159; needs of native country 166, 172 Diasporic 60, 69; communities 75, 78, 93; connection 61; ecologies 79; electoral effect 75; Liberians 65; population 66 Dikko, Alhaji Umaru (Minister of Transport) 135 disease 23, 25; resistance to 16; susceptibility to 24; widespread 21 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV Program or Diversity Lottery) 4, 100, 109, 126n21, 155, 159, 163n35; diversity visas 101 doctors 160–1, 167; African 144; Ethiopian 129; Ghanaian 168; medical professionals 131; Nigerian 168, 176; specialists 102; Zimbabwean 130 Doe, Master Sergeant Samuel 62 Doe, Jackson Minister for Transport 68 Donzo, Luseni (Minister for Public Works) 68 dual-citizenship 74, 83, 140 education 22, 76, 101, 103, 109, 138, 155, 162, 176; attainment 74; commitment to 113; declining standards 158; doctorate 115, 116; education-conscious African immigrants 44; high school 160; investment in 165, 168, 174; limited access to 157; Minister for 68; Nigerian Higher 104n26; policies 89; secondgeneration Nigerians in America 29; sector 131, 159; Western 23; see also Higher Education educational 175; achievements 90; advancement 62; American system 4; development 7, 67; institutions 102; Kenyan laws 85; policies 87; programs 54; pursuits 89; qualifications 169, 178n1; quality 176; system collapse 130 Egypt 3, 19, 46, 153; ancient 12, 15; migrants 144, 167 Egyptians 3, 110 Ekpebu, L. 11 election 82, 143, 147; activities 112; exclusion from 84; fair 151; general 83, 135, 137, 153n1; Ghana (2012) 123; influence 80; management bodies 7; national 76; periodic 144; shape 93; vote in 140; voting irregularities 148

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Index 189 electoral 82, 149; behavior 75, 77; Commission 83; constituency 81; environment 80; landscape of African nations 6; malfeasances 148; officers 144; politics 76, 94; potential 74; reform 140; results 143 employment 85, 87, 102, 109; for immigrants 44; opportunities 89, 147; sponsorship 4; status 116 Eritrea 46, 100 Ethiopia 3, 20; doctors 168; immigrants from 41; invasion by Italy 19; refugees 100; religious symbolism 17; use of remittances 174 Ethiopian churches 18; Orthodox 50, 54 Ethiopian doctors 129; immigrants 51; invasion 19; students 168 Ethiopianism 17–18 Ethiopians 3, 49–50, 52, 110 ethnic groups 60, 65, 82, 110; Khran and Mandingo 62; Mandingo 65; Mano and Gio 62 ethnic identity 5, 82; Igbo 29, 32; SGI 37–8 ex-slaves 12, 17; American 5 Falola, T. 64–5 families 47, 93, 155; African 150; Ghanaian immigrant 29; Igbo 30; migrant welfare 170 family 41, 118, 174; in Ghana 117, 123; law 85, 87; members 31, 36, 61, 65, 114–15, 116, 120–4, 150; in Nigeria 31, 34–6, 38; responsibility 111; reunification 100; sponsorship 4; ties 6, 38, 60, 81 Federal Assets Investigation Panel 135 Fidrmuc, J. 76 first generation 6, 125; Ghanaians 113; Igbo Americans 38; immigrants 112; migrants 64, 107 foreign-born population 1–2, 42, 49; African 4, 45, 56n9; parent 112; Tennessee State 43, 56n11 Fountain Ramah International Church (DRC) 51 Gambino, C.P. 56n9 Garvey, Marcus 18–19, 22 Garvins, Raymond 16 Gbegbo, Laurent (Senegal) 148 Ghanaian 113–15, 120, 125; American second-generation 6, 107; born 51; cultural events 124; cultural values 123;

culture 119, 122; doctors 130, 168; identifying 121; immigrant families 29, 39n10; language 108, 116, 120; migrants 109–10; parents 118; Parliament 147; second-generation identity 118 Ghanaians 3, 49–51, 107–10, 122, 125, 127n28; first-generation 113; secondgeneration 124–6 globalization 16, 55, 60–1, 64, 72, 149, 151, 171; economic 99; increased 177; new 98–9, 102; process 170 Gowon, General Yakubu 134–5 Greaves, Harry (Managing Director, Liberia Petroleum Refining Company) 68 Green Card lottery see Diversity Immigrant Visa Program Guinea 46, 101; Gulf of Guinea 107 Gwenigale, Dr Walter (Minister for Health) 68 Haiti 100 Hausa transnational links 101 health 103, 131, 174; industry 161; Minister for 68; nurses 144, 176; practitioners 176; professionals 168; public 24, 85, 87; services 91, 176 healthcare 23, 44, 54, 138; poor services 157 higher education 102; in Cameroon 178n8; college 44; highest level 116; institutions 169; Nigerian 104n26; university 167, 175 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) 44 home-country 41, 75, 84, 90; attachment to 112; connection to 119, 124; Diaspora contribution to 102–3, 111; electoral tradition 6; language 113; links to 71; politics 74, 80, 93; voting activities 81 homeland 5, 61, 66, 99, 130; ancestral 13–14, 31–2, 36–7; attachment to 113, 125; communication with 149; conflicts 52; connections 112, 146; forced dislocation 60; indigenous political leadership 69; instability 63; investing in 70; issue 64; leaving 144; original 152; outside 129; political liberation 139; population 68; primordial 30; relationships with 6, 59, 67; return to 65; transfer of technology and skills to 138; see also visiting homeland

190

Index

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

host country 4, 61, 69, 75–6, 90–1, 103, 109, 111–12, 127n28, 146, 174 human rights 68, 84, 85, 87; abuses 157–8, 165; lack of respect for 135; respect for 177; violations 65 identity 32, 34, 37–8, 65, 99, 110; African 45; class 111; common 20; communal 53–4; creation of 114; cultural 6, 42, 107, 113, 125–6; ethnic 5, 82, 93; formation 31, 69; Ghanaian 118, 119–20; group 123–4; hybrid 29; Igbo 30, 35; self-conscious 152; sense of 25; transnational 6, 59, 64 Igbo 5, 29–35, 37–8, 50; people 36; World Congress 33; see also pan-Igbo, secondgeneration Igbo (SGI) Igbo groups 29; intra-Igbo 32–4, 37; panIgbo 32–3; Umu Igbo Alliance 37; Umu Igbo Unite 34, 37; young 32, 34, 37; see also pan-Igbo groups Igboland 30, 37 Igboness 29, 31, 35, 37–8 illiteracy 21–3, 25 immigrants 1–4, 29, 42, 44, 46, 49, 63–4, 100–1; children of Filipino 31, 39n6; church social services 54; communities 5, 47–8, 60; Ethiopian 51; in Europe 156; Filipino and Salvadoran 128n78; first-generation 112; groups 114; highly educated 167; new 99, 146; nonEuropean 109; population 43, 98; recent 41; US Latino 80 immigrants, African 3, 4–6, 44–5, 51–2, 74; African-born 2, 4, 41, 47, 51, 53; churches 5, 41–2, 46–9, 51–2, 53, 54–5; entrepreneurship 55; legal 101; Muslim 46, 57n23; owned stores 48; population 98; religious space 45 immigrants, Ghanaian 51; community 110; families 29, 39n10 immigrants, Nigerian 51, 98, 100; Christian 52; second-generation 31 immigration 7, 64, 85, 87; African 51; African churches 55; anti-immigration 44; Federation for American Immigration Reform 43, 45; issues 54; law office 163n35; laws 98, 100, 103n9; legal and illegal 6; motivation for 47; reform 43, 57n14, 109; regulations 89, 171; restricted 15; reversed 5; voluntary 1–2, 99 immigration policies 89, 96n41, 98, 100–2; friendly 44; past 76; Policy Center 42, 56n10

Immigration Acts: (1965) 99; (1990) 100–1; and Nationality 109; Reform and Control (IRCA) 100; Reform and Nationalization 109 Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission 83 Institutional Development Fund Grant 83 integrate 133, 178; integrating 55; integrative mechanisms 146; reintegrating 70 integration 5, 22, 41, 89, 134, 172; programs 81; in United States 103, 103n3; voluntary strategic 70; of world economy 98 integrity 68, 133 International Development Association 70 Islam 12, 15, 108; African expression 45; Islamophobia 46 Islamic 11; religions 15; sects 46; zealots 12 Johnson, Ambulai (Minister for Internal Affairs) 68 Kalu, O.U. 58n28 Kenya 3, 41, 46, 75, 80, 82, 92, 94; constitution 83–4; Diaspora Conference 86; electoral malfeasances 148; Embassy 97n45; government 85, 88; law 84–6, 88, 90; political activities 93; socially transformative public policies 85; terrorist attacks 91; treaties and agreements with US 89 Kenyan 83–4, 86, 93; diaspora 90; elections 82; laws 85 Kenyans 3, 86, 88, 91, 93; abroad 90; diaspora 82–4 Khran ethnic group 62 Kibaki, President Mwai (Kenya) 83, 148 King-Akerele, Olubanke (Minister of Foreign Affairs) 68 King Jr., Martin Luther 19, 22 Komolafe, Kayode 147 Konneh, Amara (Minister for Planning and Economic Affairs) 68 Korto, Dr Joseph (Minister for Education) 68 Kukah, M. 148 Kurds 43 labor migration 100–2 Latino 73n46; immigrants 80, 95n16 Latinos 43, 56n10 Lee, H. 112 Levitt, P. 110–12

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Index 191 Liberia 5, 41, 46, 69–70; civil conflict 61; Diasporas 59, 63–4, 67; NPFL 62; Petroleum Refining Company 68; Progressive Alliance of Liberia 64; postwar 65–6; United Methodist Church 51; see also Americo-Liberia, Temporary Protection Status Liberian 68; community 52; deportees 67; Diaspora 5, 61, 69; population 70; refugees 63; Union of Liberian Association in the Americas (ULAA) 64; see also Americo-Liberian Liberians 5, 59, 62, 64, 66–70; Diaspora 6, 63, 65; indigenous 65; TPS 72n13; see also Americo-Liberians Linkage of Experts and Academics in the Diaspora (LEAD) 138, 140 Logan, B. 158 Logan, I.B. 167 McClain, Dr Edward (Chief of Staff and Minister of State for Presidential Affairs) 68 Malcolm X 19, 22 Mandingo ethnic group 62, 65 mass movement 14, 101, 144 Mecca 11–12, 101 medical 131; clinics 55; college 44; health professionals 168, 176; school 130; school graduates 168; services 178; specialists 102; supplies 132 migrant 61, 110, 146; African professional 175; behaviour 74; communities 60; education 169, 174; entrepreneurship 55, 112; Ghanaian population 109; groups 98; professional flow from Africa 167; receiving and sending nations 170, 172; relatives 111; remittances 107; voting 71, 76; worker program 144 migrants 2, 60, 63–4, 78, 129–30, 144, 156, 174; African 76, 131, 167–8, 180n39; attachment to native country 80; brainpower 178; children of 113, 146; Dominican 111; Ghanaian 108–10; Kenyan 86; labor 100; loss of 178n1; Nigerian 101, 103, 104n17; overqualified 170; professional 172; remittances 107, 110–12, 150; settlement 89; skilled 165–7, 171, 173, 175, 177; support for homeland 132 migration(s) 15–16, 60, 130, 147, 162, 169, 171; to Africa 65; of Africans 6, 99, 101, 129; effects of 69; to Europe and Americas 12, 64; forced 1, 61–2;

Ghanaian 108–10; international 98–9, 101–3; International Organization for 167, 172; Kenyan 86; labor 100–2, 180n32; of Liberians 62; Nigerian 6, 99–102; patterns 70, 112; Policy Institute 45, 102; rural–urban 155, 178n2, 178n9; skilled 165–8, 170, 174–6, 178, 178n1, 178n6, 178n10; to stronger economies 158; systems 76; of trained individuals 157; voluntary 12, 14; World Bank Migration and Remittances 173; see also brain drain migration and development discourse 166; training seminars 70 military 62, 133; expertise 145; intervention 136; officers 134–5; rule 21 Minister of Foreign Affairs 67–8 Mohammed, General Murtala 135 Moi, President Daniel arap 82–3 morbidity 21 mortality 21; high rate 23 Mugabe, Robert (Zimbabwe) 148 Museveni, Yoweri (Uganda) 148 Muslims 82; African-born 46; African immigrants 57n23 Nashville 5, 42–6, 48–50, 57n14, 57n17, 57n23; African immigrant churches 51, 53, 54–5; American Baptist College 51; Christian South Sudanese 52; see also Agape House National Council for Law Reporting (NCLR or Kenya Law) 84; laws and treaties 85, 86, 88; policy classification system 85, 90 national identity formation 69; consolidation 67 National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) 62–3 Ndi-Igbo 30; see also Igbo new Ellis Island 42 New World 1, 11, 57n21, 99, 101 Ngafuan, Augustine (Minister of Foreign Affairs) 67, 73n31 Nigeria 3, 6, 19, 99, 109, 131, 141; artisans 160; culture of corruption 135–6; Diaspora engagement strategy 138–9; Igbo community 29–38; immigrants 44, 98, 100–1; leadership problems 129– 30, 132–4, 137, 140; migration 158; missionaries 47; Pentecostalism 41, 46, 49, 51, 57n25; poor working conditions 102; remittances 149–50; skilled emigrants 167, 176

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

192

Index

Nigeria in Diaspora Organization (NIDO) 138, 140, 149 Nigerian 6, 30, 36, 132; born 51; churches 50; Civil War with Biafra 30; community 31; developmental process 138; Diaspora 102–3, 150; Diaspora in the US 98, 101–2; doctors 168, 176; economy 141n8; government corruption 135–7; Higher Education 104n26; Independence 134; leadership 130; medical professionals 131; migrants 103; migration 99; missions abroad 140; related 35 Nigerian immigrants 51, 98; Christian 52; parents 31; second-generation 31 Nigerians 3, 37, 103, 110, 130–1, 133–4, 136; churches 49–51; in Diaspora Organization (NIDO) 149; home-based 150; living abroad 138–40; migrations 6, 101; second-generation 29; skilled professional 102 nurses 176; African 144 Nyewusira, V. 6–7

and education 89; investment incentive 138; Kenyan 84, 86; national and international 77; neo-liberal 149; public 69, 85; refugee 98; restrictive 165; transformative 75, 80, 82, 90–1, 94; welfare-related 22; see also immigration policies, social policies post-war (postwar) 69; Liberia 65–6, 70; reconstruction 5, 59, 67 poverty 21–2, 24–5, 93, 149, 161, 169; alleviating 150, 168, 174; escaping 103, 158–9; in Liberia 69 professional 156–7; bodies 7; development 67, 80; expatriate 146; migrants 167, 172, 174–5; Nigerians 102; qualifications 100, 160 professionals 7, 62, 103, 132, 166; African 101, 144, 157–8, 161, 165, 168, 173–6; experienced 130; medical 131, 168; from Nigeria 98, 102; outflow of 168–9, 171; qualified 165, 167; return from abroad 177; trained 129 Puri, Shamlal 90, 97n44

Obasanjo, President Olusengun (General and Chief) 135–6, 138, 140 Official Development Assistance (ODA) 107, 131–32, 139, 173 Ogbeidi, M.M. 136 Olupona, J.K. 46, 56n8, 57n23 Onuzulike, U. 5 Otiso, Dr. Kefa 83, 97n47 Oyebade, A. 5, 57n21

qualified 55, 172; African Nationals 179n11; disqualified 68; expatriates 157; homeland Liberians 70; individuals 177; overqualified 170; people 67, 175; persons 132; professionals 7, 165, 167 Quiwonkpa, General Thomas 62

Pan-African Association (PAA) 18 Pan-Africanism 5, 13, 16–17, 19–20, 22–4, 172 Pan-Africanist activities 19; ideals 20, 23, 25; ideology 13, 20, 23; movement 17 Pan-Africanists 19, 103n6; Diaspora 20 pan-Igbo groups 32–3, 37; organizations 33, 37 Pentecostal 46–7; churches 48–50; Fellowship of Nigeria 46; ministries 41 Pentecostalism 46–7; African 42 Pentecostals 46; African 47; African-born 52 People’s Redemption Council 62 pilgrimages 12; Islamic Hajj 11; to Mecca and Medina 101 policies 67, 74, 81, 88, 92, 93–4, 131, 171, 177; compensatory 172; dubious implementation 21; for economic growth 175; governance 92; integration

rebel group 62 rebellion 37, 135 Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) 41–2, 56n3; Agape House 53, 54; churches 48; Holy Ghost service 46; parishes 49, 52; provincial pastor AjayiAdeniran 47; website 56n4, 56n5 refugee 69; Act (1980) 100; policies of developed countries 98, 100; practice 61; status 63 refugees 2, 4, 43, 52, 71, 85; Liberian 63; political 76; UN protocol 100 relational dialectics theory (RDT) 30, 38 religious activities 111; African space 45, 49; American society 46; beliefs 17; diaspora 5; diversity 84; environment 54; Ethiopia’s symbolism 17; groups 60; institutions 41, 53; Islamic centers 46; Nashville community 51; tradition 55 remittance 6, 69, 71, 102–3, 107, 110–12, 121–2, 124–5, 173; African Remittance Institute 173; behavior 127n28; boosting family welfare 170; and development

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Index 193 174; diaspora 131, 139; fees 180n39; international 130; objectives of secondgeneration Ghanaian Americans 120, 126; practices 114, 127n49; reverse 70; sending 80, 115, 117; social 61; use in eradicating poverty 149–51 return home 4, 19, 63, 99, 110–11, 162, 166, 170–1; afraid to 130; bothering to 12, 16; dream 64–5; encouraging 177; incentives 165; migrants 174; option 172, 178; repatriation 61; to United States 70; after war 68, 129 Reynolds, R. 37 River of Life Church (South Sudan) 51 Safran, W. 76 Samukai, Brownie (Minister for National Defense) 68 Saudi Arabia 144 Sawyer, A. 64 Scientific and Industrial Research and Development Center 157, 163n12 Sebwe, Dionysius (Ministry of Defense) 68 second-generation Ghanaian 107, 113, 124–6; Americans 6, 107, 113–15, 125; children 113; identity 118; population 115 second-generation Igbo (SGI) 29, 33–4; young adults 30–2, 35, 37–8 Second World War 133, 146, 166; postwar period 99 Senegal 46, 82, 138, 148; Senegalese voters 82 Shagari, President Alhaji Shehu 135 Shagari, Muktar 149, 151 Shain, Y. 60 Sheffer, G. 61 Sierra Leone 46, 63–4, 70, 101, 168 Sirleaf, President Ellen Johnson 68, 72n16, 73n32 Sirleaf, Fomba (Director, National Security Agency) 68 skilled 132, 166–7, 170–1, 176–7; expatriates 172, 174; experts 138; Ghanaians 109–10; Liberians 69–70; manpower 141, 165, 169; migrants 131, 168, 173, 175; migrant worker program 144; Nigerians 101–2, 140; personnel 156, 158; vocational 159; workers 7, 98, 155, 157, 161 skilled migration 166–8, 174–5, 178, 178n1, 178n6; see also brain drain slave labor 15–16; raids 23; trading 16; White American owners 59

slavery 13–15, 64; anti-slavery 13; postslavery era 12 slaves 15; African 14, 99; enforced 149 slave trade 108, 129; abolition 12; Atlantic 14, 16, 20, 22–3, 99; transatlantic 1, 5, 14, 99, 101 social capital 79, 110–11, 130 social policies 85; justice 77, 78; strengthsbased 77, 80; transformative 86, 87, 89 socially transformative policies 85–6, 87, 89; effects 77 social transformation 77, 79–80, 82, 130; of African migrants 76; assessment 90; cultural dimension 81; framework 78; policies 84, 89 Somalia 44, 46, 100, 150 Somali immigrants 46 South Sudan 41, 44; River of Life Church (South Sudan) 51; South Sudanese 49, 52 South Sudanese 49, 52 sub-Saharan Africa 11–12, 108; evangelical Christian revivalism 46; remittances 173 sub-Saharan Africans 100 Sudan 19, 129; Lost Boys 52; Sudanic civilizations 11 Sudanese American Nuer Presbyterian Church (South Sudan) 51 Taylor, C. 62–3 Temporary Protection Status (TPS) 63, 72n13 Toe, Christopher (Minister for Agriculture) 68 Tolbert, Jr., President William R. 62, 72n20 Tolbert, Richard (Managing Director, National Investment Commission) 68 transnational 38; activities 80, 112–13, 125; identity 6, 32, 35, 37–8, 59, 64; migrant communities 60; media 37; mega-ministries 48; migrations 6; networks 49, 61, 74; parenting 29; Pentecostalism 56n3; political influence 76; practices 31; selves 30; social field 71 transnational behavior 89; communities 125; engagements of migrants’ children 113; Hausa links 101 transnationalism 59–61, 112; secondgeneration 112–13 trans-Saharan trade 101 Triangular Trade 16

194

Index

Downloaded by [University of California, San Diego] at 17:04 13 February 2017

Tubman, George (Managing Director, National Ports Authority) 68 Tubman, President William V.S. 61–2 Uduku, O. 30 Uganda 41, 46, 109, 148 Umu Igbo Alliance 37 Umu Igbo Unite 34, 37 underdevelopment 14, 103, 129, 169 underemployment 109, 158 unemployment 103, 109, 158, 170 UNIA 18 United Methodist Church (Liberia) 51 United Nations 24, 100; Institute for Training and Research 70, 73n41; Organization (UNO) 21; protocol on refugees 100; Secretary General 176 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) 175 United Nations’ Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) 165 United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) 175; statistics 22 United States Agency for International Development 69–70 United States Census Bureau 1, 7n2 United States Citizenship and Immigration Services 72n15 United States global interior 43 unskilled workers 70, 98 Uya, O.E. 99

visiting homeland 35–7, 112 vote(s) 84, 93; abroad 96n34, 140; migrant 71; racketeering 149; right to 83, 96n36 voters 74, 83; abroad 84; apathy 149; defeated by 44; Diaspora 6, 75, 78, 90; empowerment 85; groups of 81; Kenyan diaspora 93, 96n35; Senegalese 82 voting behavior 75, 82, 91–2, 94; of African immigrants 6; diaspora 78; ethnic 93; migrant 76; modified 75; transformation in 86, 89 voting diaspora 74–5, 82–4, 92; ethnic 91–4; home-country 81; incongruence 6; irregularities 148; in national elections 76; preferences 92 Wamalwa, Justice Minister Eugene 83 war 67–8, 144; Biafran–Nigerian 30, 129; civil 62, 65; crimes 65; decimated 69; victims of 72n13; war-torn countries 150, 166; see also Second World War Warwick, Othello (Ministry of Defense) 68 Whitaker, B.E. 83 World Igbo Congress 33 YarAdua, President Alhaji Umaru 136 Yeboah, I.E.A. 113, 127n43 young Igbo Diaspora 5; groups 32, 34, 37; organizations 30–1, 37–8 Zeleza, P.T. 76, 146