Home » Jill Biden voices kinship with Africans’ fight for democracy

Jill Biden voices kinship with Africans’ fight for democracy

by The Grio

U.S. first lady Jill Biden said Friday that she feels a kinship with Africans during her sixth visit to the continent, telling The Associated Press in an exclusive interview that she wants to support nations fighting for democracy — “just like I feel we’re doing in the United States.”

“We cannot take things for granted, because it’s such a precious system of government,” she said. “We can’t be complacent. We have to keep fighting for it.”

The first lady opened her trip earlier this week in Namibia, a young democracy, where on Friday she delivered a rousing speech to more than 1,000 students. She told them the democracy their parents and grandparents fought for is now theirs to defend and protect.

In the interview, Biden said that when first lady Monica Geingos invited her to visit, “I thought there’s no better place to go than to go to Namibia” to “encourage the youth to get involved, stay involved, fight for their democracy, just like I feel we’re doing in the United States.”

Africa’s 54 countries are a mix of sometimes fragile democracies in places like Nigeria, which has an election this weekend; and more troubled nations like Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali, Chad and Sudan that have seen coups in recent years; or Uganda, Gabon, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon, where presidents have been clinging to power for decades. Namibia gained its independence from South Africa in 1990.

American democracy was severely tested after President Joe Biden’s election in 2020 when the incumbent, Donald Trump, repeatedly told lies about the election being stolen from him. Hundreds of his supporters who believed his conspiracy theories rioted at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in a violent attempt to block Congress from certifying Biden as the new president in an unprecedented effort to thwart the customary peaceful transfer of power.

In her speech, Biden…

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