Posted by Nelson Dafe | 5 October 2015 | 5,507 times
Helen Mukoro-Idisi is making history as the first ever black woman to seek election as President of Spain. Her campaign has been receiving a lot of worldwide media attention recently for the boldness as well as the novelty of her candidacy in a race that has always been dominated by white males from Spain.
The lawyer and author is the founder of the Union de Todos party which is the platform under which she is contesting the presidency which comes up December 20.
In this interview with News Express Mukoro-Idisi bares her mind on social, economic and political issues that are of international significance and what her plans are for Spanish people as well as Spain’s relationship with Africa.
News Express: At what point exactly did you get the feeling you want to be President of Spain and why?
Helen Mukoro-Idisi: I took the bold step when the system is almost all the way around. People serve the economy, we are sent to rescue bankers instead of those with individual needs, a dint of light on social justice almost disappearing, our government assume social justice as topic is not profitable, the capitalists apostles do everything to evade the real issue, growth is, the distribution of wealth, those most responsible are the least responsive, justice protects the powerful and unprotect the weak, they privatised profits while socialise the losses, who have more money pay less tax, etc., etc., etc. Slowly, the popular classes begin to question the established system and that's where our party comes in, our aim is to advance equality.
You recently lost a regional election, why do you think your popularity has soared to the extent that you want to all the way for the big one which the Spanish presidency?
When one falls, one must get up, with each drop a new thing learned for life. I have irresistible
impulses to set new records. There are limits as to time and generation in which one lives. Man
has played its survival at all times, and proved he is able to break barriers no matter the state of
affairs. It’s as if the body will store an energy reserve for abnormal situations. I’m aware of this
potential. There have been documented cases of people who, for their lives, have been able to raise tens of kilos rocks or running at speeds well above their usual average. I always say it is
impossible to win without knowing how to lose. Impossible to walk without knowing how to fall. Impossible to hit without knowing how to err. Impossible to live without knowing how to live: The glory is not in never falling, but rather that I’m able to get up as many times as necessary especially when it has to do with advancing inequality, I got up immediately after the local elections, an irresistible impulse to advance inequality dwell in me, and I'm doing so on behalf of voters that believed in me at the polls, they see me as their hope and I decided to move forward with their burdens on my shoulder. And that is something that very few people have the privilege to experience.
You have spoken of ensuring better job creation in Spain and boosting the Spanish economy. Can you offer some specifics on how you would do this differently from how it is being done by the current administration?
The capitalist system is characterised primarily by a so-called free market economy in which
theoretically anyone can start a business. The problem is that the practice of equal opportunity
does not exist and the capitalist dynamic makes the market less and less free, they dominate and
decide who remain in business, and it affects the labour market. It is not easy for SMEs survive in the tough competition in which this system is based. The economy is increasingly dominated by fewer companies and these fewer but powerful companies can't create all the jobs we need in
Spain. In any monopoly company, there is no democracy from the largest to the smallest, with
some exceptions, such as cooperatives. The main decisions that deal with the economy and the
management of our companies are taken by a few people, the rest simply obey. To make matters
worse, political democracy is emptied of content increasingly, major decisions are taken
increasingly in the benefit of big companies, it is limited to deposit a blank check in the polls every X years. And, more dramatic, more worrying, these big companies rarely exercise little
responsibility that is given. Capitalism is the economic dictatorship. A sophisticated dictatorship, made with democratic appearances. The dictatorship almost perfect. The evolutionary summit of totalitarianism. Not by chance the owners of the “machines” of social wealth generators are mainly those who hoard it. Inevitably it tends to concentrate wealth, increasing social inequalities are a direct consequence of the laws governing capitalist society. Therefore, the class struggle is the motor of history. While there are social classes, at least contrasts between them, there will be social struggle. Of course, it existed before capitalism and the class struggle, but the originality of this system lies in the forms it takes. Capitalism is characterised by disguising exploitation, it makes slaves hardly realise they are, the unemployed almost not feel the strings. But, however much the capitalist elites are diligent in eating coconuts to the masses to meekly accept the established order, late or early, more or less, right or wrong, the exploited classes (at least some of them) react to the permanent attack sufferers as it swells.
The capitalists, addicted to money, insatiable, always pull the rope, never satisfied with what
has been achieved, and late or early, and very reluctantly, causing the reaction of the exploited,
the rope may break. Ordinary citizens for some time we close our eyes, but the reality is
overwhelming at some point, no choice but to wake it left. Who fight against this absurd, illogical and alienating system must be clear that the alternative is true democracy. Only when we have full freedom to meet on equal terms all kinds of ideas, only when all of them can be tested in practice (provided they do not violate the most basic human rights), we can truly enough experience different ways of organising the economy solve chronic unemployment problems (that capitalism not only not disappear, but they tend, in the long run, despite some ups and downs, to sharpen) affecting our world: hunger, poverty, violence, war, disaster, environmental ...
The key to our final step towards true civilisation, species for which the law of the jungle gives way to equality in social relations, without which freedom is impossible in life in society, for
selfishness give way to solidarity, so that human rights are not worthless, so the story progresses
inexorably forward, unable to return to the Middle Ages (however technological whatever) ... lies in true democracy. Only when the fate of humanity is in the hands of it all is when we survive ourselves, it is when we are definitely the specter of self-extinction. Of course, this can not be achieved in two days, but the beginning of the road to a more secure, more just and free society can not be delayed. It really has begun. Although still very shyly. This mammoth work is everybody.
We are all more or less responsible, no one is blameless. We must be open-minded. Practice
critical thinking. Questioning and contrast, to be active intellectually first, to also be in daily
Spain, like most of the western world, has increasingly embraced liberal values that are in
some cases contrary to values from your native land, Nigeria. Values like same-sex marriage, and pro-abortion rights have been largely embraced by the Spanish society. As president, what would be your stance towards these issues?
The rights of homosexuals are indisputable, inalienable, irrenuciable universal, like all human
rights. No country should discriminate against citizens because of their sexual orientation, laws
against homosexuality are a violation of human right, same sex marriage does not cause harm to
anyone. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights begins with the immortal words: “All
human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” However, lesbian, gay, bisexual,
transgender and intersex people worldwide suffer harassment and attacks, are imprisoned and
receive discriminatory treatment. For many, the declaration of the Universal Declaration are empty words.
One of the major changes in modern societies is the power that women have over the decisions
and improving their quality of health and social life, women in our culture can decide who and
when they want to marry, separate, work, among others many things; compared to our mothers I
must say that I am very grateful to have been born a woman in these times when we can and
we want to decide on many things: politics, employment, economy and on our bodies.
Women, ask law on this issue which is essential for the realisation of our human rights, our
freedom of choice and our health are guaranteed to receive public health care in conditions that do not put our physical and psychological stability at risk.
I take this opportunity to mention that the United Nations Secretariat, in a little publicised report,
presented the importance of respect and the decriminalisation of abortion as part of the
setting in motion of the rights of women. to all nations to do so, should provide access to
women to abortion and ensure proper sanitary process that entails and who better than
important the state as the main guarantor of the healthcare process and equal for all, appearance
is requested in these times of capitalist corporatist opportunism or to manage such a
delicate matter: the lives of women exercising their right to choose on your body.
Any interruption of pregnancy can cause temporary psychological changes in women.
Studies say that the negative effects on a woman who performs illegal abortions in conditions which faces a crime and penalty are greater, which can reduce abortions in cases of regulated and
A campaign as unique as yours could generally be attacked by racism and sexism. Have you faced such on a large scale since you announced your presidential ambitions?
If we fix our gaze on Spain, and took some distance as observers we will appreciate the
speed with which we traveled that road to equality. Spain supports the efforts of all
nationalities to self-organisation in all areas – political organisations, unions, the women’s
movement, community, and society in general. Spain support the struggle for affirmative action
within integrated institutions, and the struggle for economic and political freedom, including the right of self-determination
One of the hottest topics today is the current migration crisis facing Europe.
There are widespread concerns in European societies that the influx of migrants would have devastating effects on the economic and social life of the continent, as migrants flood in with their different cultures, which many fear would erode the European way of life. How do you plan to address this as Spain’s President?
The EU will need to accommodate the 20 million people estimated that for one reason or another
are thinking of leaving their home countries in the Arab region. The problem is, Europe has serious problems of unemployment, especially in countries like Spain, Greece, etc, but also has a
demographic problem and it will be very difficult to sustain pension systems. The compulsory
redistribution of refugees is the main tool with which the European Commission intends to soften
the impact of the huge volume of refugees that the EU countries are receiving. Although images
of desperate immigrants are shaking the conscience of Europe, with the photo of the little
Syrian dead on the beach as the highest expression. Member States are concerned about
it. What matters to Spain is to solve a problem that appeals to the conscience of us all. If they
are voluntary or mandatory, the end result will be very similar.
How best do you think Europe can engage Africa on the level of economic cooperation?
For Africa, the EU is its main economic partner, within a framework of commercial, financial
dependence and above all, growing political influence. The EU is now an economic and
political reference of first order in Africa. Europe is the largest trading partner in Africa and
destination of 51% of the exports of the black continent. Most African countries have economic
relations with the European Union (EU) and benefit from tariff reductions for various items.
The first black president of a western country, Barack Obama of America is winding down his presidency gradually. Where do you think, as a black man, he has succeeded and failed?
In terms of foreign policy, Barack Obama is giving the Americans what they want. In today’s world, the US remains the largest power at all levels, although the world’s biggesr economy is China. But no one equals him in commercial, financial, cultural and, of course military capability. It remains second to none. Obama has made great reforms – Stimulus Plan, healthcare, finance, energy ... etc. Faced with the Arab Spring has had little role to play despite his statements. He is now judged by the way he responded to the occupation of Crimea and the destabilisation of Ukraine by Russia. But at the end of his recent tour of some Asian countries, he left seated an idea that has been much discussed, considering: “Why everyone
is so keen on using just military force when we have gone through a decade of war at a cost
huge for our troops and our budget.”
Obama has dealt with very complex times without losing his temper. The Nobel Peace Prize that
distinguished the beginning of his mandate was premature. But he has acted with sufficient
prudence, and has not been any soft, as demonstrated with Libya. He has become an
addict of drones in scenarios such as Pakistan, Afghanistan and Somalia. Perhaps the greatest achievement of his presidency has been to prevent an economic crisis, a recession from becoming a depression, and have managed to promote, with the Federal Reserve, a recovery, which is also essential for Europeans. But it is a recovery that many citizens do not feel, especially those in despair and on the unemployment rolls, or that their salaries are reduced. The Transatlantic Partnership for Trade and Investment that come to fruition can become one of the greatest successes of Obama’s foreign policy. In Europe, the Europeans, claimed he failed in some critical areas, he failed to close the detention center at Guantanamo and for spying on them by the US National Security Agency (NSA). Obama sees the world through an ideological
prism, as the neocons. Obama has risked with Iran and reached an agreement in July to stop the
progress of this country towards nuclear weapon, which is a great success. Against Russia, he approached it wisely, there was no military response from the US or the West, except to reassure allies who feel threatened. And while racing, well managed relations with China, the only rival of the US in the foreseeable future. The balance of Obama’s foreign policy “is not as bad as critics say. Just not good enough.” Still it has ground to play.
•Photo shows Mrs Mukoro-Idisi.
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