Ein Blick hinter das Tabu des Stammessystems

Nur wenige Tage vor Ostern löste die Gewalt zwischen Mitgliedern der Dagomb, einem islamischen Stamm, in der Bevölkerung des christlich geprägten Ghana Bestürzung aus. Die Angehörigen einer Großfamilie der Dagomb ließen das eigene Stammesoberhaupt ermorden. Daraufhin rief Ghanas Regierung den nationalen Notstand aus. Der Mord löste eine Welle des Protests gegen den Fluch des Stammessystems aus.

Schon lange leidet Afrika an dem Glauben, dass leidenschaftliche Gefühle der Stammeszugehörigkeit unproduktiv, unverantwortlich und unmenschlich seien. Seit Beginn der Kolonialisierung Afrikas durch die Europäer, wetterten diese gegen die Stammeskultur. Gleichzeitig spielten sie einen Stamm gegen den anderen aus, wann immer es ihren Zwecken dienlich war. Bei der Festlegung innerafrikanischer Grenzen ignorierten die Imperialisten die Verschiedenheit der Stämme, was dazu führte, dass einige dicht bevölkerte Länder wie Nigeria ohne einen dominierenden Stamm blieben; oder der für seinen Zusammenhalt berühmte Stamm der Ewe zwischen zwei Ländern (Ghana und Togo) aufgespalten wurde.

Indem sie die Verbundenheit dem Stamm gegenüber ignorierten, erhofften sich die Europäer ein Afrika dessen Treue in erster Linie der Nation und nur zweitrangig (wenn überhaupt) dem Stamm gelten würde. Die Politiker, die Afrika in den 50er Jahren und Anfang der 60er Jahre in die Unabhängigkeit führten, lehnten die Macht der Stämme im Wesentlichen ab. Sie bemühten sich, die Autorität der Stammeshäuptlinge zu begrenzen und setzten ihre Macht über Schulen, Land und Arbeitsplätze ein, um das Stammesbewusstsein zu schwächen, wenn nicht sogar vollständig auszulöschen.

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