The Experts Africa Doesn't Need

Yesterday night, in a complete dark, at the outskirt of the second biggest city of Togo, I was waiting. In the dark I was waiting for a package to be delivered to me. From Lomé, the capital. The package contains important devices we were missing at our community center to complete our running water system, and the automatic irrigation system.

I waited for 3 hours. The courier kept lying to me. Every time I called him he would say he was only 5 minutes away.

While I was there, a girl selling loaf of bread on the street approached me and said she would like to marry me.
“You don’t know me”, I replied
“We will know each other on the way”, she replied
“But I come from far away”, I said
“Distance is only in the eyes of people without faith. I’ll go where ever you live”, she commented.
” Really? what about your parents? I’ll run in trouble, and you too. we need their approval, don’t we?” I asked trying to hide my confusion
“Parents want happiness for their kids. If you’ll make me look good, happy, even if you have kidnapped me, my parents will be happy to see me, even if it’s in years. It’s worth the worry! Anyway, I’ll arrange everything, I’ll tell them an angel kidnapped me, and I was consenting”.

My confusion was total, and I touched her arm with laughter. She stepped back. My phone start ringing, it was the courier. He has finally arrived.

“I was here on time” started the courier, “but I didn’t see you, so I went to the downtown to unload the car”
“Really?” I ushered with some anger in my voice.
“Have you ever seen me?” I asked
“No” he replied
“How then have you not seen me 3 hours ago, and have to go away?”

I took the package from him, gave him his fee, and climbed on our bush motorcycle to head back to the wonderland.

At that very moment I spotted a big white car. I’d say new Toyota land cruiser, 4wheels, with two white people at the back and a local guy driving them toward a nearby hostel. The car was carrying a sign loudly proclaiming “technical assistant experts” to Togo.

I asked myself “Did our governments know that only the less competent and less experienced white people are sent here like technical assistant, expert or adviser?”

Would the US send their best ambassador for example in Togo or Benin? NO
Would the British government send their best energy expert to Senegal or Cameroon? NO
Would Microsoft send their best software engineer to Nigeria? NO
Would Italy send there best Doctor to LIberia? No

Most people in Africa don’t understand how low Africa is in the esteem of people in the west.

The US would send their best ambassador to China, Russia, Britain but not in Ghana or Kenya.
The British government will keep at home their best energy experts, or they would already be working for a giant energy corporation.

Most of the so called white experts you see here are people with no real career option in their country, left in a corner at their office back in New York, London, Paris or Washington, for whom Africa is usually the only choice left.

These leftover experts would finally find their career rebirth inside our public administration, the IMF, some dubious NGOs, as director or top officials commanding a lot of authority over local experts.

The sad truth is that in most cases, there are many local qualified and experienced African experts who would do better the job those white experts are paid zillions to come to do.

They have the job just because they are white, as in many places in Africa white skin is by itself a mark of expertise and knowledge.

I wondered why our people overrate so much those low level experts who are only enjoying the benefit of white supremacy and the damage of racism on African societies.

Stupid me. Should I be spending so much time thinking about these things.

It was late already, and we still have 40km to ride on a completely dark road.

We started the motorcycle engine, and headed back.

I wondered if the young lady now hates me. We had not finish our conversation.
I wondered why people lie so much like the courier, but remembered I’ve read somewhere that kids start lying 2 hours after they have started talking.

It was 9pm when we arrived home. I ate pounded yam with fish sesame sauce with stone ground tomatoes.

I went to bed tired. I did not have any dream!


About Mawuna KOUTONIN

Mawuna Koutonin is a world peace activist who relentlessly works to empower people to express their full potential and pursue their dreams, regardless of their background. He is the Editior of, Founder of, and Social activist for Africa Renaissance. Koutonin’s ultimate dream is to open a world-class human potential development school in Africa in 2017. If you are interested in learning more about this venture or Koutonin’s other projects, you can reach him directly by emailing at

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