Côte d’Ivoire: Here is the legacy that Houphouët left us

Starting from almost zero, without oil, gold or diamonds, and other mines in abundance, here is the legacy that Houphouët left us.

  • two autonomous ports,
  • one international airport plus five national airfields,
  • the first national airline in the sub-region,
  • two bridges in Abidjan, having himself participated in the construction of the first one just before independence and many others in the interior,
  • three university hospitals in Abidjan (expansion of the first one) + numerous regional hospitals,
    hundreds of water towers,
  • four hydroelectric dams.
  • the first sub-regional electricity production and distribution company,
  • the only country in Black Africa with all major cities connected by asphalt,
  • the first highway in black Africa (apart from South Africa),
  • the first oil refinery in Black Africa (apart from South Africa),
  • the first bitumen manufacturing company in Black Africa (apart from South Africa),
  • the first domestic butane distribution company directly connected to homes via an inter-city pipeline network,
    the largest oil palm plantation in the world,
  • the largest privately owned cocoa and coffee plantation, which he bequeathed in part to the state during his lifetime,
  • the largest sugar complex in Africa,
  • social housing in all cities through the first two state-owned companies in Africa dedicated to such a program,
    a decentralized public university system,
  • a modern political capital, a center for advanced university education,
  • millions of national and sub-regional executives trained in Côte d’Ivoire and abroad thanks to an efficient scholarship system
  • a peaceful and intelligent sub-regional community integration,
  • a business district structured on the American model,
  • a master plan for the economic capital programmed to be developed over 50 years, including 3 additional bridges,
  • a strategic reserve of animal proteins, cattle and sheep, containing more than 100,000 heads to face a possible shortage or political crisis with the border countries,
  • and for the anecdote, a palace with the first ice rink in Africa, before South Africa…

Almost everything had to be built. Not all the objectives were achieved. But he still made us before his death :

  • the second largest economy in ECOWAS and the first by far, had it not been for Nigeria’s oil,
  • the third largest African producer of yams,
  • the second largest African exporter of bananas,
  • the fourth largest exporter of pineapples in the world and the largest in Africa,
  • the world’s largest exporter of cocoa,
  • the first African exporter of coffee and the fourth worldwide,
  • the first African exporter of copra and fifth worldwide,
  • the first exporter of kola nuts in the world,
  • Africa’s largest cotton gin,
  • the world’s largest rubber tree yield,
  • the first African exporter of tuna and second in the world,
  • Africa’s leading producer and exporter of tropical flowers and plants,
  • the first African exporter of bitumen.

And above all, when it dies:

  • a United, Peaceful and Respected country,
  • the ONLY one in the sub-region, along with Senegal and to a lesser extent Guinea, that has not experienced a coup d’état.

Nana Boigny…Respect!

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