Leadership, Integrity and Nation building.
– by Madut Tong Ngor
The purpose of this chapter is to examine leaders of “integrity” and their role in “nation-building” in Africa and particularly in South Sudan. Leaders of integrity are a great potential in building a nation that will enjoy the privileges of a unified whole, without discrimination of any type. My thesis is that leaders with integrity can consciously plan to weld their heterogeneous societies into a single nation. This is crucial for gaining people’s assent, allegiance and love for all their own people, not just a select few.
The phrase “nation-building” is comprised of two significant terms. The first “nation” denotes people, an ethnic group or race. Meanwhile “building”, as Gyekye observed, suggests “putting parts together into a whole”. An architect puts building materials such as stones, sand, wood, cement and others together to construct a house. The house is a complete piece of work by itself, a new object that is not just a bag of cement, a piece of wood or some sand. Despite this, the analogy of building is flawed in our case because it deals only with material things, not rational, conscious and moral beings such as peoples or ethnic groups. But it does give a bright picture of how nationalism should help all people coexist in African States. It is an impossible task without the Christian principle of “love”. Jesus commanded people to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all (your entire) mind” and to “love your neighbour as yourself”, Matthew 22:37, 39. One must be careful when dealing with the notional term “love” to pay attention to what the Bible says about it, not what we assume it to mean. Ideas such as Creation, salvation, revelation all show God’s love as well as His ongoing care for us.
The concept “nation” etymologically implies a “birth group, blood-related group”
Nation-building, according to Gyekye, is “a conscious and purposive attempt to bring different peoples (ethnicities) together to think, act and live as if they were one people, belonging to one large ethno-cultural community”. The terms “conscious” and “purposive” are crucial because nation-building does not occur haphazardly; it is an outcome of a planned project by the statesmen, to formulate a new culture and identity for the multicultural, multinational, different ethnicities within the nation state. It is, therefore, a project that shows a meaningful future, as it draws on the existing traditions, institutions and customs and raises them to the national level in support of the nation’s claim to sovereignty and uniqueness. A sovereign state is expected to be coherent, unique and strong in everything.
Integrity is defined by Webster’s online dictionary as “firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values, an unimpaired condition, the quality or state of being complete or undivided”. According to Ngor, this definition “implies that integrity involves incorruptibility, soundness, wholeness, completeness (of character) and all values that a Christian (believer) treasures”. These are the values that keep a leader on his/her way towards nation-building, which is badly needed in our country.
Further, integrity as expressed in the Bible refers to two virtues: the first is the wholeness or completeness of human character or behaviour and second is about how a citizen should live in city-state. The wholeness of a person’s character is crucial if he/she is to perform his responsibilities, as well as enjoy his privileges, in the nation state. Failure to adhere to these virtues will inevitably reduce him to selfishness. He becomes like a prey animal that chases and catches its victims just for eating, no less and no more. Any leader who misuses public resources lacks integrity and is thus no different from an animal who consumes its prey.
Nation as ethnicity
The book of Genesis describes how God in His wisdom has established the nations of the world out of the descendants of Noah, 10:32. So, it is not unreasonable for Herder to describe a “nation as natural a plant as a family, only with more branches”. The author here uses two metaphors, namely a plant and a family, to express the essence of a nation. Despite its various branches or sections, it is the same plant or the same family. As a result, Herder would not embrace the idea of forming a pluralistic state, since it is ‘unnatural’ and so contrasting with his view of a nation as a natural phenomenon. By “natural” Herder meant that members of a nation are consanguine or share the same blood and thus can be considered as an extended family. This conclusion is, at least in my view, exaggerated, since blood-relatedness among the entire members of a nation is not an historical fact. It is more a matter of belief or feeling that members have about themselves, no more and no less.
Although the term nation refers to a community of people who share language, history, culture, territory and possibly have common ancestral background that indicates their blood relationship, their characteristic ties are embedded in the ethos of solidarity, cohesion, sympathy and understanding. Ethnicity in the latter sense is the feeling that one belongs to a group, which shares specific socio-cultural features. This feeling of belongingness to a group is the most outstanding mark of a nation. Nation, in this sense, may be seen as an ethnic group or a tribe. Consequently, an individual’s identity is often expressed in terms of his/her ethnic affiliation, even in a modern pluralistic state, namely a state composed of diverse ethnic groups, tribes or nationalities. For example, the statement “I am Dinka” may be uttered by a Dinka man from South Sudan; or “I am Fojulu” by a Fojulu person from the same country and so on. The point I want to make here is that there is a connection between nation and people, no matter if they have a defined territory or not. Politicians use expressions like Arab nation, Jewish nation and Kurdish nation for people who do not have well-defined territories, because they believe these people to have common origin, culture, language and history.
The most used expression of ethnic group or ethno-cultural community is a tribe with its characteristic features exemplified in customs, habits and values that enhance its nationhood. Nation, according to Gyekye, refers to “cultural continuity and identity” whose essence is the language. Consequently, he views the important step towards nation building to be creating “the sense of common nationality and national identity” in a pluralistic state or in multi-cultural situation (emphasis mine).
The term “nation” that appeared in the “League of Nations, 1920” meant an “ethno-cultural community of people who have a sense of belonging together”. The same term was used later to refer to an ethno-cultural group or a minority culture, who had no defined territory and thus are part of a political state. And, since they are part of a political state, they face the problem of being a minority within pluralistic state, which Hobhouse highlighted as, “the problem of dealing with a minority nation is the hardest that statesmen ever have to solve”. Hobhouse here has singled out “minority nation,” an ethno-cultural community in a pluralistic state, as the hardest problem to tackle for a political state. This is because of the complexity of interests which African states, and particularly South Sudan, are experiencing today. Dealing with this problem is a responsibility of statesmen who represent the political body in their country. If the statesmen are careless about the common good of the nation state and promote instead their own little sectional interest at the expense of other minorities, it will be impossible to cultivate a “nation” or “nationalism” in that state. This is the primary meaning of the term “nation” as it was used in the early 20th century.
The second meaning of the term “nation” in the phrase “League of Nations” is a state, for example a political entity such as Uganda, Kenya or South Sudan, a state which encompasses several “nations” in the first meaning of the word. This second definition of a “nation” has made it ambiguous. It can nonetheless be borne in mind that “nation” in its first meaning refers to a “community of people who believe themselves to be bound by some intrinsic ties”, but without well-defined boundaries or even a central government. As a result nation, in its first sense, can be seen as a social concept, not a political one. It cannot be considered as a state since the latter has a sovereign political entity with territorial boundaries and a government that has final authority.
So the term “nation” has two senses. Its first sense is not a political concept, but its second sense, namely ‘nation as state’ is a political concept. According to the first meaning, nationhood denotes the idea of cultural homogeneity, while, in its second sense, it denotes the idea of concentration of sovereign political power at the centre. So, a nation-state can be regarded as a political entity with a culturally homogeneous citizenry and with a government. This is the type of state found mostly in Europe, but not in Africa. In Africa, states are usually heterogeneous and mainly fabrications of 19th century colonial systems.
A multi-national state is one culturally heterogeneous ethno-national community. If it is one political entity, it may still enjoy characteristics such as linguistic homogeneity which will facilitate communication among all its members. Their social characteristics, too, include solidarity, interdependence and commitment to national causes and the interests of all fellow members of the nation. The nation-state shares basic values and common meanings to them all, which will ease their understanding of themselves, interpret their experiences, formulate their social identity, their national consciousness and – importantly – a sense of belonging.
It is an undeniable fact that our world is devastatingly divided into so many states, each of which is occupied by either ethno-cultural communities or multi-national groups. The former is homogeneous in terms of culture, language, beliefs and values, but the latter is heterogeneous. Despite their diversity in culture, language and values, the Bible says that no member of these ethnicities has chosen to be in one community and not the other. It was God Himself who divided these communities into nations. All the believers worldwide were and are called by God from these diverse nations to be the illuminating light and the preserving salt that this world needs, Matthew 5:13-14. It is imperative, then, for us to be as God our Saviour expects us to be, making our light and salt effective by the actions of our daily life.
Nation as a pluralistic state
The second sense of the term “nation” is the state or country, particularly a pluralistic one. It is pluralistic because it is comprised of multi-national communities. Pluralistic means something that has many parts; for example, a pluralistic state has many tribes within its territory. Modern states, nevertheless, are comprised of several ethnic communities for two reasons. The first was the initiative by neighbouring peoples to establish “larger political units for mutual benefits of all kinds.” The second resulted from conquest by another invading people, who forced diverse ethno-cultural communities into states. Africa was not exceptional because colonialists amalgamated different groups in her territory into nation-states in the 19th century. For example, Sudan, Kenya, Uganda and now South Sudan are multi-national pluralistic states. Gyekye has cogently observed the failure of colonialists to be due to their inability “to realise that it is one thing to make Ghana or Kenya or Yugoslavia,” but “it is quite another to make Ghanaians or Kenyans or Yugoslavs”. This quotation reveals two important things. The first is the state, which can be established easily by demarcating its boundaries, amalgamating diverse communities and then giving it a name like Kenya or South Sudan. The second part, which is the hardest, concerns the people and how they perceive themselves relative to the state. Do they perceive themselves as South Sudanese, Kenyans, or Americans and so on, or do they perceive themselves as loyal to their own original ethnicities like Dinka, Nuer, Bari and so on? Colonialists and many modern African political leaders have largely failed to realise the difference between establishing a state, and melding multi-nationalities into unified loyalists to their countries.
A homogeneous nation-state may not be a political entity with well-defined boundaries, but it is a social community. A heterogeneous state on the other hand is a political entity with a defined territory and a government. This heterogeneity in Africa has made the creation of nationhood, or building a nation within each state, crucially important. Let us examine how to engage in nation-building.
The meaning of nation-building
Before I embark on what nation-building means, I would like to show briefly that there is a difference between nation-building and national development. National development is about the economy, it is about roads construction, about clean water, hospitals, schools and so on. If these services are equitably distributed across the country in a way that benefits each ethnic group, then national development will be an effective tool of cohesion and solidarity for the state. Developing a nation, therefore, is about rendering services that benefit all ethnicities within the state and thus can support nation-building.
What then is nation-building? The question of building a nation is not easy because it involves multi-nationalities within the state on the one hand, while attempting to meld multi-cultural communities into having the characteristics and privileges of ethno-cultural community with a shared language, a feeling of belongingness, common experiences and shared values on the other hand. Kwame Gyekye, a Ghanaian thinker whom by now you will have gathered that I respect, defined nation-building as “… a conscious and purposive attempt to bring different peoples together to think, act and live as if they were one people belonging to one large ethno-cultural community”. Nationhood demands clear planning, thinking and action. It is not fortuitous as many African leaders might have assumed.
There are two ways of welding a multi-national community into nationhood in the sense of an ethno-communal group. The colonial powers waged wars to join diverse ethno-cultural communities into nation-states, without their consent nor any consideration of their cultural differences. This artificial welding of multi-national communities into nations may make them susceptible to violent disintegration and thus erosion. One appropriate example of this type is Sudan, which was established by colonial power, but a war of liberation erupted one year before its independence in 1956. Although the liberating struggle took a long time to achieve its task, South Sudan seceded in 2011, leaving Sudan still a war zone because other non-South Sudanese also want to liberate themselves from it. This should be a lesson that we southerners must learn. The purpose of nation-building and independence is not demarcating the land and naming it South Sudan, but rather the formulation of a proper nation.
The second way of establishing a state is voluntarily, as ethno-cultural communities join their efforts to establish it for their own good and everyone’s benefit. In Africa, colonialists destroyed this voluntary tendency by the people to form larger political communities in the 19th century. They conquered local communities and forced them into nation-states. African wars today are often the consequences of these forceful formations of states. But do not always blame the past. Political leaders in this continent today ought to ask themselves about the way they would like to govern themselves, as well as how to turn their multi-national states into peaceful and prosperous nationhood. Of course, this will ease people’s co-existence within a given territory. There is a debate about the relevance of the nation-state in Africa. Davidson, for instance, views the nation-state in Africa as a curse, but Gyekye disagrees with him saying that it is not the nation-state which is a curse, but “the imposition of the type of nation-state tendentiously designed for the African people by the colonial powers, a type that did not take into account the cultures and characteristics of the peoples forcefully placed within the same territorial borders and ordered to evolve a common form of culture and political life”. The word “imposition” in the quotation implies lack of freedom of choice during the formation of these artificial African states spearheaded by the colonial powers. This act of imposing colonial orders on the nation-state without people’s consent is a curse that needs to be removed because of its negative consequences, still being seen by disintegration in many African countries today.
Steps toward nation-building
Previous discussions show that a nation is composed of an ethno-cultural community, namely a tribe. A tribe is a homogeneous community that has one language, culture and system of values, which ease relationships among its members, ensuring solidarity and cohesion within the community. A multinational state, by contrast, is a pluralistic community, heterogeneous by nature and thus lacking the privileges of the former. A multinational state is a state that is composed of various ethno-cultural communities or, shall we say, many tribes.
The challenge at this juncture is how nationhood be gleaned out of this pluralistic or multinational state? In other words, is it possible to turn various tribes within a pluralistic state into a nation? In my attempt to tackle this issue, I will again rely on Kwame Gyekye, a Ghanaian thinker who twenty years ago endeavoured to answer the types of questions I have just posed. He has suggested six steps that could possibly lead to nationhood in a pluralistic state. I will reflect on them as follows:
1. Understanding the privileges of the ethno-cultural community is crucial, because they reflect the true portrait of nation-state as well as showing how the people within a given state have to think, to act and to behave in such a pluralistic and complex environment. The environment here is described as pluralistic and complex because of its various tribes, while its complexity comes from their different interests, both as individuals and as communities. The citizens of pluralistic nation-states should think, act and pledge allegiance to the state, resembling that of loyalty to the ethno-cultural community, because they pursue the collective good for themselves no matter what their ethnic background. Here, each person will inevitably find him/herself cooperating in the advancement of the national good. Pursuing the collective good for all citizens is impossible if the citizens of the state, particularly political leaders, have no love of God in their hearts towards themselves and others, Matthew 22:36-40.
2. Creating an open society, a democratic body in which the interests of all citizens are equitably considered. The main characteristics of this society are that burdens and responsibilities are distributed, not on the basis of ethnic background or who you know, but on the basis of merit, credentials and performance. It is a society that endeavours to ensure equal rights of all the citizens in the state, because it has given democracy the primacy and thus has considered people-participation as the principle of political thought and behaviour. Consequently, it resists all types of tyranny and cherishes democratic government and public accountability, while encouraging the politics of participation in the state. If everybody, particularly each ethno-cultural community in a pluralistic state, has the chance of participation, that nation-state will eventually secure the loyalty of all the various ethnic groups within its territory. In this open society, people of different backgrounds within its premises can have the opportunity of sharing political power, including up to the office of president. Since political domination can be perceived as a dangerous threat to the interests of minorities in this multinational state, it can thus be peacefully resisted. Political participation of all citizens in a multinational state suggests that the constitution should be designed in a way that the office of president must rotate among all ethnic groups in the state. That the president should be elected from even minority groups is a sign of social cohesion, solidarity and unity within the nation-state.
3. National development should be done in an equitable way – that is, it should be done equally throughout all regions of the nation. This crucial step of nation-building is achieved only when there is a meaningful policy of decentralisation in the state. Consequently, the decentralised system will eventually promote democracy, through which members of various ethnic communities will practise their talents as they participate in economic development of the whole state.
4. In order to achieve nationhood, members of various ethno-cultural communities should have a positive attitude towards themselves within their multinational state. This will doubtlessly enhance relationships among different neighbouring communities. In this way, they will never divide the citizens into ‘outsiders’ and ‘insiders’, namely those who do not belong to the tribe and true members of the tribe. The former is not a stranger, but a brother because he/she belongs to the ethno-cultural group.
5. Respect based on human dignity. Every human person deserves respect because he/she entertains feelings of dignity and self-esteem, which he/she expects others to acknowledge, irrespective of background, ethnicity or even religion. Christians should accordingly show this respect to every individual ethno-culture, wherever they live within the same umbrella, same roof or same state. Indeed, all true Christians must lead the way forward.
6. Avoidance of partiality that often privileges one ethnic group or region over the other. The attitude of supporting one group or opinion more than others, instead of being fair to everyone, will be a huge threat to the process of nation-building or nationhood. This partiality has historically often emerged as a matter of superiority or domination on the basis of big numbers, culture, or wrong politics over those who are minorities and thus it may quickly turn into ethno-cultural conflicts within the state. Here, we should remind ourselves that impartiality is the antidote of any kind of discrimination in the state. It will inevitably lead well to the creation of nationhood. Israel was composed of twelve tribes who lived together for a very long period until some of them were compelled to secede under the poor leadership of Rehoboam, son of Solomon, 1 Kings 12:1-17. That was not a good time in the history of Israel. If the leaders of this continent, and South Sudan particularly, entertain a life without integrity, where they keep practising partiality, it will continue to threaten the unity of the state and thus make nationhood an impossible task for us. The state ought to be fair to everyone in it and render developmental services equally across the regions. This will eventually make the various components of ethno-cultural groups feel that they are politically and culturally equal to their other fellow citizens. Equality here is not in terms of numbers, education, culture and political development, but in terms of humanity, dignity and the recognition of perceived needs. Building a nation doubtlessly necessitates the development of a common language, national culture and identity. If the state fails to develop a common language for various ethno-cultural communities and instead recognises officially all languages, there will be two consequences. The first is that the sense of national identity and culture will be limited to the dominant language group or ethno-cultural community. Second, it will impede the development of the national identity expected to be in a multinational state, as well as it will also hinder the transfer of people’s allegiances and loyalties to the larger state. In this case, the state must decide whether it recognises all ethno-cultural languages for development, and thus each language group will maintain its national identity at their level, or the state will decide to support one (perhaps two) main languages as official, so that only they can be used in offices, courts, schools, commerce and so on. The latter will create a national culture and identity in the long run, as it occurred in Tanzania where Kiswahili functions as the national or official language of that multinational state.
National culture and identity
The main purpose of building a nation will be to create national culture that will be embraced by various ethno-cultural communities within the state. Culture originates from the Latin word “Cultura”, meaning ‘to cultivate’, and signifies the cultivation of national arts, sciences, beliefs and value systems. Culture, as Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary says, is wider than this in its meaning, to the extent that it includes way of life, art, beliefs, attitudes and even ways of growing seeds or breeding animals. If a nation is cultured, it is well-educated, able to understand and enjoy art, literature and music as well as beliefs and values. This is not only confined to general educational knowledge. All Christian believers are expected to be cultured in our faith so that we can live uprightly before God our Lord and Jesus Christ our Saviour. The psalter describes the cultured believer as a happy person, because he/she puts their knowledge into practice every day in every way, Psalm 119:1-8. National identity on the other hand does not come to us in this chapter with the sense of an ethno-cultural group (or a tribe), but in the sense of multinational communities. In these, each person has to pledge allegiance, not to his/her immediate community (narrowly known as a tribe), but to the state at large. For example, I identify myself as South Sudanese, Christian and Dinka, but not vice versa. The same is true of everybody living in this world. He/she identifies himself with the state as, say, an American, British, German and so on, followed by his religious affiliation, Christian, Muslim, atheist etc., and finally his origin Welsh, English, Dinka, Moro, Shiluk and more.
National culture and identity are of great significance for three reasons:
1. For the enhancement of national cohesion, solidarity and the amalgamation of various multinational groups
2. It makes the solution of national problems easier because of the common viewpoint
3. It makes citizens appreciate the importance of current events and their meanings, which are thus relevant for interpretation by the whole society.
To build a nation, therefore, is to maintain national culture and identity which will ensure people’s consciousness about who they are as well as their way forward.
How then is national culture created?
The creation of national culture is not the responsibility of one person, but it is a project that a new state like South Sudan should embark on for realisation of our hopes. There are two ways of creating national culture: first, by adopting common components (music, dancing, sculpture, painting…etc.) from all ethno-culture groups within the state, developing and raising them to the national level; and second, by building new national institutions that will embrace values, new symbols, even myths based on the common past, for example the myth that “Dinka and Nuer are step brothers”. All these will enable ethno-cultural groups to identify themselves with different aspects of culture within the state as their own. People do not lose anything, but they gain a lot. This will not be an easy task but it will realise itself as time goes on. It is a task that can be initiated by leaders with integrity, who do not focus on the negative aspects of society but on the positive ones, then use the latter to eradicate the former, because their hearts, motives and eyes are pure, Matthew 5:8; 6:1-6, 22-23. Let us therefore build South Sudan as “one nation, one people” with integrity, to be one great country with all its ethno-cultural groups.
Building a nation is a project that leaders with integrity can embark on consciously and purposefully in order to gain multi-nationals’ allegiance and commitment to the state. It is a crucial move since it guarantees cohesion, solidarity and the unity of the state, nation or country. Furthermore, nation-building is necessary because it secures the creation of national culture and identity. This national culture is embraced by all the citizens of different ethnicities within the state because it is gleaned from the cultures of these groups and then lifted to the national level. No leader(s) can do this unless he/she enjoys integrity of character and so does not discriminate ethnicities or their members due to their origins. Building a nation out of plurality is tedious, but it can be done with integrity. I hope this project will soon be planned purposefully and conscientiously in our country, namely South Sudan.
I want to sing joyously with everyone else, “How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity”, Psalm 133:1. “How good and pleasant it is when brothers and sisters live together in peace!” “How wonderful it is, how pleasant, for God's people to live together in harmony!” “How wonderful, how beautiful, when brothers and sisters get along!”
Living in unity implies consensus, thinking and acting ensemble in running national affairs. Let us as people of South Sudan live in unity and serve our national cause instead of our selfish desires. Our personal integrity is the road towards true nation building.
Using this chapter and Scriptures quoted
1. Why is it crucial that “leaders with integrity … consciously plan to weld their heterogeneous societies into a single nation”? List as many positives and negatives for doing/not doing so as you can think of. Consider the implications from Matthew 22:37-40.
2. Discuss the implications of saying “I am Dinka”, “I am Fojulu” when you live in a nation called South Sudan. Is it better or worse to say, “I am South Sudanese”? Why?
Consider Genesis 10:32; 11:7-9; 12:1-4.
3. Thinking about being from ‘a tribe’ or being from ‘a nation’, how can Christians “make our salt and light effective by the actions of our daily life”? Matthew 5:13-16. What perspectives may we chose to moderate? Why?
4. Most, if not all, people would not want to wage war to “meld … multi-ethno communal groups into nationhood”. Why, apart from the obvious terrible humanitarian costs of war? What does winning a war not do?
5. Considering Madut’s “six steps that could possibly lead to nationhood in a pluralistic state”, put them in your order of priority. If you were the nation’s leader, which would you work on first, and why?
6. What do you learn about integrity in leadership from 1 Kings 12:1-24? After considering verses 4,6,7,10,11, how do verses 15,22,24 affect your thoughts? Reflect on and apply this to today’s situations.
7. Why is being “pure in heart” important for everyone? Matthew 5:8; 6:1-6; 6:22-23.
 Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.85.  Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.85.  Armin Von Bogdandy, Stefan HauBler, Felix Hanschmann, and Raphael Utz. State-building, Nation-building, and Constitutional Politics in Post-Conflict Situations: Conceptual Clarifications and an Appraisal of Different Approaches in Max Planck Yearbook of United Nations Law, Volume 9, 2005, p. 579-613. Edited by Armin von Bogdandy and R. Wolfrum. http://www.mpil.de/files/pdf2/mpunyb_bogdandyua_9_579_613.pdf retrieved on October 21st, 2017.  https://www.merriam-webster.com/  Madut Tong Ngor Integrity—an Influential Characteristic of the Christian Life in Issues Facing Christians in Sudan Today edited by Pastor Colin Salter (Weefour Publications: Redruth, UK) 2009, p.87.  Ibid. p.87. Quoted in Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p78-79. From Johann Gottfried Herder (1877-1913) Herders Sämmtliche Werke ed. B. Suphan (Berlin: Weidmann).  Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.79.  Kwame Gyekye Ibid. p.80.  Ibid. p.80.  Leonard Trelawny Hobhouse Social Evolution and Political Theory (The Colombia University: New York) 1911. Republished (Cornell University Library: Ithaca, NY, USA) 2009.  Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.80.  Ibid. p.81.  Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.82.  melding - If several things meld, or if something melds them, they combine or blend in a pleasant or useful way. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/ Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.84.  Kwame Gyekye Tradition and Modernity: Philosophical Reflections on African Experience (Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK) 1997, p.85.  You can describe something as fortuitous if it happens, by chance, to be very successful or pleasant. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/  Basil Davidson The Black Man's Burden: Africa and the Curse of the Nation-state (Random House: New York, USA) 1992.  Tendentiously – expressing a particular opinion or point of view very strongly, especially one that many people disagree with. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/.  Kwame Gyekye Ibid. p.86.  https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/  I would say, I am first a Christian, then I am British, and finally I live in Cornwall – the editor .  In order: New Revised Standard Version; The Voice translation; Good News Translation; The Message.