Africa's Last Colonial Currency : In conversation with Ndongo Samba Sylla

May 05, 12:17 PM

Host Shaun Matsheza discusses the CFA Franc, with Development Economist, Dr. Ndongo Samba Sylla.

Despite the political and institutional changes that occurred with Africa's decolonisation process in the second half of the 20th century, many colonial constructs remain to this very day. One of the most obvious and egregious symbols of these continuities is no doubt the CFA franc. The acronym of this currency created in 1945 by the French provisional government originally stood for franc of the French colonies in Africa. It still circulates in eight countries in West Africa and six countries in Central Africa, and its imperial founding principles haven’t really changed.
 
For a deeper understanding of the CFA Franc, we spoke to Dr.  Ndongo Samba Sylla, a Senegalese development economist who lives in Dakar, and works with the Rosa Luxembourg foundation. Ndongo recently published a book, written together with Fanny Pigeaud,  titled: Africa's Last Colonial Currency: The CFA Franc Story. Through an exploration of the genesis of the currency and an examination of how the economic system works, the book outlines how colonialism persists in many African countries.