Zimbabwean chiefs, it appears, were some of the early converts into what has become one of Africa’s most brutal dictator’s pet projects.
Even as Gaddafi pounded his fellow countrymen in a disproportionate show of force, the African Union on Tuesday was pushing ahead with the plan.
AU officials met at its headquarters in Ethiopia on Monday and Tuesday to discuss the formation of the Africa Authority, which would replace the AU Commission and eventually bring African countries under a single government.
A study of Gaddafi’s lobby shows that Fortune Charumbira, the president of Zimbabwe’s Council of Chiefs is one of the African traditional leaders who have often run out of superlatives in describing the Libyan leader’s ideas whenever he gets a chance.
Last year in September, Charu-mbira travelled all the way to the Libyan capital Tripoli to pledge support to Gaddafi.
Charumbira was quoted saying Gaddafi was the only African leader capable of defending African values and culture, which he said were being eroded by Eurocentric leaders.
“Politicians are not owners of Africa,” Charumbira said in what was called a highly-charged address to the Libyan leader.
“Africa is in a development predicament and the answer to that is in what you have been fighting for.
“Brother Leader, we support your idea for a United States of Africa.”
He went on to describe the AU as a Western parliament.
Gaddafi reacted to Charumbira’s exaltations by claiming that politics had destroyed Africa and that the United States of Africa was the only alternative.
Africa’s longest serving dictator had gathered 450 African traditional leaders in Tripoli so that they could sell his ideas of a united Africa to their subjects.
Some of the ideas included advocating for more traditional ways of life and rallying behind his vision of a United States of Africa within the shortest time possible.
“There is no recorded case in history where a society developed by abandoning its culture,” Charumbira, who is also a member of the Pan-African Parliament said.
It has emerged that Gaddafi is far from being a traditionalist, occasionally hiring half-naked western women to dance for his clan for huge fees.
Gaddafi has his own model of democracy, which abhors elections.
He argues in his Green Book, which he first published in 1976 as a guide for his leadership, that elections are not true manifestations of democracy.
He is also against parliaments and claims Libyans run their own affairs through the “People’s Congress.”
Charumbira is a known Zanu PF activist but it is not clear if President Robert Mugabe supports Gaddafi’s ambitions to rule Africa.