Bingu says ‘no culture should be called primitive’

President Bingu wa Mutharika has condemned the tendency of bigger and richer nations to impose their cultures and traditions on countries presumed to be smaller and poorer.

Speaking during the forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations currently underway in Doha, Qatar, Mutharika lashed at bigger and richer nations who he said obliterate the cultures and traditions of other nations by calling them primitive.

Said Mutharika: “There should not be any nation on this earth that looks down or marginalises the cultures of other countries including their traditions.

Mutharika: No culture imposition

“No culture should be called primitive because primitiveness is the state of mind. Civilizations serve a people for a particular time and they cannot be primitive as long as they are useful to those people.”

Mutharika observed that learning and understanding each others’ cultures and traditions through the alliance of civilizations would help ease world tensions, thereby contributing to lasting peace and development throughout the world.

“I believe that what we need to do is to learn in terms of our cultural diversity to talk with each other and not talk at each other.

“We must find an agreed common formula for co-existence of cultures and traditions through intercultural dialogue which would also allow all the nations to use those cultures and norms in order to forge development alliances,” he advised.

Mutharika, however, said in pursuit for global alliances for civilizations there was need to go down to the grassroots, where culture really exists to avoid leaving out of the equation the majority of the population.

“My appeal is that in the development equation, we should include all the people particularly those at the very lower levels of development in our societies. Specifically, we need to find ways of empowering women and the youth to fully participate in strengthening the alliance of civilizations,” Mutharika said.

He further said often times women and the youth have been victims of changes in civilizations as well as being victims in interpretation of cultures and social values.

“May be through this alliance we should change that (perception) and make the women beneficiaries and not victims of such civilizations.

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