Sunday, November 2, 2008

Thomas Sankara ''african Che''

Thomas Sankara , was an African revolutionist from Burkina Faso known to the world as ''The African Che'
he was born on 21 December 1949 and died the 15 of October 1987.was a captain, leader of the burkina Faso Revolution who fought against corruption, averting famine, promoting environmental factors, making education and health the first priorities as Barack Obama.

In 1976,Sankara with a group of commander officers of the commando training center in Pô formed a secret Organisation during the presidency of Colonel Saye Zerbo, known as a the "Communist Officers' Group" (Regroupement des officiers communistes, or ROC)formed by: Henri Zongo, Jean-Baptiste Boukary Lingani, Compaoré and Sankara.

In 1981, He was appointed Secretary of State for Information in the military government.attending to his first cabinet meeting on a bicycle, but he resigned on April 21, 1982 in opposition when he realized that the government was corrupt, which he saw as the regime's anti-labour drift, declaring "Misfortune to those who gag the people!" ("Malheur à ceux qui baillonnent le peuple!")

He will become Prime Minister on November 7, 1982, under the government of Major-Doctor Jean-Baptiste Ouédraogo, but soon will be dismissed on May 17 and placed under house arrest after a visit by the French president's son and African affairs adviser Jean-Christophe Mitterrand. Henri Zongo and Jean-Baptiste Boukary Lingani were also placed under arrest; this will cause a popular uprising.

later on, with the support of the army,the people of Burkina Faso and Libya. they will come to power in a popular coup masterminded by Blaise Compaore'on August 4,1983,where Sankara will become President at the Age of 33 due to his personal charisma and vision.

As President,Thomas Sankara will bring the country into a socialist nation,changing the country's name from formely known Upper Volta to Burkina Faso which means ''land of the upright man''.
He Promoted Health Program and women's rights, promoting a "Democratic and Popular Revolution" (Révolution démocratique et populaire) but this will create division and jealousy among the members of the party, and he would be assassinated in a coup d'etat led by his own friend Blaise Compaore with the support of France.

Sankara saw himself as a revolutionary and was inspired by alot world socialists Leaders such as Fidel Castro, Lt.Jerry Rwanlings , Ghana's former President.

He defined his revolution ideology as anti-imperialist in a speech on October 2, 1983, the Discours d'orientation politique (DOP).


"We hope and believe that the best way of limiting the usurpation of power by individuals, military or otherwise, is to put the people in charge. Between fractions, between clans, plots and coups d'etats can be perpetrated. Against the people, a durable coup d'état cannot be perpetrated. Therefore, the best way of preventing the army from confiscating power for itself and for itself alone is to make this power shared by the voltaic people from the outset. That's what we are aiming for.."

August 21, 1983 press conference.
Source: [3]

"It's really a pity that there are observers who view political events like comic strips. There has to be a Zorro, there has to be a star. No, the problem of Upper Volta is more serious than that. It was a grave mistake to have looked for a man, a star, at all costs, to the point of creating one, that is, to the point of attributing the ownership of the event to captain Sankara, who must have been the brains, etc."

August 21, 1983 press conference.
Source: [4]

"That is the hidden side of November 7 revealed. Mysteries still remain under the cover. History will perhaps be able to speak about it at greater length and to assign responsibilities more clearly."

August 21, 1983 press conference.
Source: [5]

"As for our relationship with the political class, what relations would you have liked us to weave? We explained face to face, directly with the leaders, the former leaders of the former political parties because, for us, these parties do not exist any more, they have been dissolved. And that is very clear. The relationship that we have with them is simply the relationship we have with voltaic citizens, or, if they so wish, the relationship between revolutionaries, if they wish to become revolutionaries. Beyond that, nothing remains but the relationship between revolutionaries and counter-revolutionaries."

August 21, 1983 press conference.
Source: [6]

"I would like to leave behind me the conviction that if we maintain a certain amount of caution and organization we deserve victory[....] You cannot carry out fundamental change without a certain amount of madness. In this case, it comes from nonconformity, the courage to turn your back on the old formulas, the courage to invent the future. It took the madmen of yesterday for us to be able to act with extreme clarity today. I want to be one of those madmen. [...] We must dare to invent the future."


Source: (Excerpt from interviews with Swiss Journalist Jean-Philippe Rapp, translated from Sankara: Un nouveau pouvoir africain by Jean Ziegler. Lausanne, Switzerland: Editions Pierre-Marcel Favre, 1986. Used by permission in following source:) Sankara, Thomas. Thomas Sankara Speaks: The Burkina Faso Revolution 1983-87. trans. Samantha Anderson. New York: Pathfinder, 1988. pp. 141-144.

Writings about Thomas Sankara

* (French) Biographie de Thomas Sankara : La Patrie ou la Mort..., de Bruno Jaffré ISBN : 2-7384-5836-X • 1997 268 pages
* (French) Les années Sankara de la révolution à la Rectification, de Bruno Jaffré ISBN : 2-7384-5967-6 • 1989 new edition in 1997 336 pages
* Le président Thomas SANKARA, Chef de la Révolution Burkinabe: 1983-1987 Portrait de Alfred Yambanga SAWADOGO,Ed. L'Harmattan, Mars 2001. ISBN 2-7475-0588-X
* Thomas SANKARA,"OSER INVENTER L'AVENIR" La parole de Sankara de DAVID GAKUNZI. Ed. PATHFINDER et HARMATTAN, Janvier 2005. ISBN 2-7384-0761-7
* THOMAS SANKARA, L'ESPOIR ASSASSINE de Valere SOME. Ed. L'Harmattan , Janvier 2005. ISBN 2-7384-0568-1
* Thomas Sankara in Godfrey Mwakikagile, Military Coups in West Africa Since The Sixties, Huntington, New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2001.
* Underground System, by Fela Kuti, Kalakuta/Sterns, 1992.

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