Prof. Patrick Lumumba, a Kenyan lawyer and activist, has referred to the new wave of African talent emigration abroad as modern-day slavery, noting that Africa is still under the influence of colonizers.
"When we judge Africa, we must ask ourselves from whose lens are we judging Africa. The colonizers left [Africa] but never left. Africa is the only [region] that is still being referred to as francophone or anglophone," he noted as cited by Nigerian media.
He explained how enslavement of Africans was the main source for the realization of the First Industrial Revolution and likened modern-day working visas of the US, Europe and other regions to "modern slavery", calling it the new resource helping to develop the New Industrial Revolution.
"We were the enablers of the First Industrial Revolution [...] Right now, we're enabling the fourth and fifth industrial revolutions which is why there are talent visas because they’re taking our talents. If it is not our nurses, it is our IT experts or our engineers. We are gleefully letting them away," the activist said.
African specialists are in the spotlight of several international migration programs. For instance, in September 2017, as part of the implementation of the European Agenda on Migration, the European Union launched pilot projects on legal migration, aiming to strengthen the role of legal migration, with a particular emphasis on African countries.
Last year, a project called "Talent Partnerships" was launched, which aims to boost international mobility based on "matching of labor market needs and skills between the EU and partner countries," focusing on the North African region.