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France

Yade criticises Sarkozy's speech on Africa

media French Secretary of State for Sport Rama Yade, pictured at RFI Sébastien Bonijol/RFI

Three years ago French President Nicolas Sarkozy stirred up a storm in a controversial speech in Senegal. Now, in an exclusive interview with RFI, a high-profile junior minister of Senegalese origin has distanced herself from his call on Africa to “further enter into history”.

Secretary for Sport Rama Yade’s relationship with Sarkozy has deteriorated in recent years and she told RFI that he was wrong to suggest Africa needed to make more of an impact on history during amuch-publicised  speech at the University of Dakar in 2007.

“I think that not only has the African man made his mark on history, but he was even the first to do so, because I know about the culture,” she told Yasmine Chouaki on the En Sol Majeur programme.

“I’m not his [Sarkozy's] teacher," she said. "What do you want me to do, jump on the platform and slap the President of the Republic?”

“What do you want me to do? I can’t do anything about it. We’re talking about the President of the Republic, the President of all the French people. It’s they who elected him."

The full interview will be broadcast Monday between 11 and 12 French time and is also available in French here.

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