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MPs attend a plenary session to debate motion on French colonisation at the parliament in Tunis, Tunisia on June 09, 2020.

Tunisia's Bold Move to Demand Apology from French Colonisers Rejected

The motion to demand that France apologise to Tunisia for its colonisation has been rejected with politicians saying, 'We are not going to feed Tunisians with such motions.'

Tunisia's parliament has recently rejected a motion put forward by the Al-Karama coalition which demanded an apology from France for the "murder and torture, the brutality of French colonialism". Seifeddine Makhlouf, the leader of the coalition which currently occupies 19 of the 217 seats in parliament, had insisted that the apology would be a move towards "[healing] the wounds of the past". According to Aljazeera, the motion fell short by 109 votes needed for it to pass.

READ: Belgium Has Apologized to its Former African Colonies for Kidnapping their Mixed-Race Children

The details of the motion included the European country taking responsibility for the "crimes, assassinations, torture, rape, forced deportation and looting of natural resources" before Tunisia eventually obtained its independence in 1956.

However, resistance to the motion was voiced out by leader of the Qalb Tounes opposition party, Osama Khelifi, who said that, "We are not going to feed Tunisians with such motions." Ultimately, the significance of France as a trade partner in light of Tunisia's longstanding economic crisis swung the vote and moved for the motion to be dismissed.

Given the current climate, the motion was a bold move by Tunisian opposition leaders in their attempts to have the injustices of colonialism acknowledged. With the continued Black Lives Matter protests in America, and now several other countries in the world, colonialism and its various symbols have been cast into the spotlight as racist systems of oppression are being interrogated.

More recently, Belgian authorities removed the statue of King Leopold II from Antwerp square, amid the mass protests in the country. The monarch was responsible for the murder of an estimated 10 million Congolese people in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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Photo: Alvin Ukpeh.

The Year Is 2020 & the Future of Nigeria Is the Youth

We discuss the strength in resolve of Nigeria's youth, their use of social media to speak up, and the young digital platforms circumventing the legacy media propaganda machine. We also get first-hand accounts from young creatives on being extorted by SARS and why they believe the protests are so important.

In the midst of a pandemic-rife 2020, the voices of African youth have gotten louder in demand for a better present and future. From structural reforms, women's rights, LGBTQ rights, and derelict states of public service, the youths have amplified their voices via the internet and social media, to cohesively express grievances that would hitherto have been quelled at a whisper.

Nigerian youth have used the internet and social media to create and sustain a loud voice for themselves. The expression of frustration and the calls for change may have started online, but it's having a profound effect on the lives of every Nigerian with each passing day. What started as the twitter hashtag #EndSARS has grown into a nationwide youth revolution led by the people.

Even after the government supposedly disbanded the SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) unit on the 10th of October, young Nigerians have not relented in their demands for better policing. The lack of trust for government promises has kept the youth protesting on the streets and online.

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