120th Anniversary Celebration – BRITAIN AND AFRICA: THE LONG VIEW



2:30 pm - 3:45 pm




free (donations to RAS gratefully received)

Photo credit: Department for International Development (DIFID)


What is the future of Britain’s relations with Africa, and how will they be influenced by the past?


Since Independence, Britain’s relations with Africa have fluctuated. The colonial legacy left close relations and a shared inheritance with many African countries. But relations could also be seen as too close, even neo-colonial. Alongside agreement on the need to tackle poverty, health, climate, and terrorism, there were arguments: in the Commonwealth over white minority rule in southern Africa, over shared or imposed values; over economic ties that were seen as beneficial by some and exploitative by others; over aid that was described variously as generous, too much, or never enough.


After 60 years, have relations, at last, achieved an equilibrium? And how will they evolve in the next 10-20 years? What will be the impact of Brexit? How important is Africa to a Britain that is separating from Europe and tilting to Asia? And how relevant is Britain to an Africa that is asserting its own voice in the world, and looking for new partners to achieve the economic transformation it still requires?


Chair: Dr Nicholas Westcott, Director, The Royal African Society



  • Hon James Duddridge MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Africa, FCDO
  • Dr Monica Juma, Cabinet Secretary for Defence, Government of Kenya
  • Irfan Siddiq OBE, Director, East and Central Africa at Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office
  • Dr Alex Vines, Managing Director and Head of Africa Programme, Chatham House
  • Dr Fonteh Akum, Executive Director, Institute for Strategic Studies