The Most Prayerful Continent Is Undoubtedly The Most Underdeveloped In The World. Why?

The Global Finance Magazine on a developmental survey carried out a report on the top 10 poorest countries in the world 2021. These are the countries from top to bottom respectively: Burundi, South Sudan, Somalia, Central African Republic, Malawi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, Mozambique, Liberia, and Madagascar. As shocking as it seems, it is African countries that occupy the list from top to bottom. Rich in natural resources, but a close associate to hunger, poverty, societal misery, and illiteracy.

Somalia which ranks third in the afromentioned list is perceived to be the most-religious country in the world based on surveys done by the CEOWORLD magazine, in partnership with the Global Business Policy Institute. Niger stands as the second most-religious nation. The list contains Djibouti, Mauritania, Ethiopia, and Malawi. Are you following the trail?!

Somalia which ranks as the most-religious nation is the third poorest in the world. Niger and Malawi are part of the poorest countries despite being religious. Malawi for instance is one of the most prayerful nations in the world. Is there an underlying cankerworm eating up the fabrics of development?

Ravaged with waves of inept leadership, political and social instabilities, and an abnormal quest to infiltrate its natural resources by foreign gluttons, Africa holds on to a peculiar cliff. Religiousity and Spirituality are umbrellas that covers the general identity of the continent’s population. I can say we are dipped in acknowledging the supreme being and communing with him in ways considered to be diverse and distinct. It is evidently clear that this continent prays the most, home to the most powerful men and women of God, and fully armed with countless Churches and Mosques. We turn to God in the mildest of situations. We’ve uphold our values and morals traditionally as a continent but we are still in a constant state of never-ending retrogression. Where have we gone wrong? Is it that prayer does not work? Why must the most prayerful creep and suffer within the international system?

The questions here are rhetoric and could be judiciously answered by you. However, despite being an agnostic, I believe that we have reneged as a continent in fulfilling our mandatory duties as indigenes of Africa. We have forgot to play our part and rely solely on the supernatural to effect change.

Nations like Saudi Arabia and Bahrain are religious and successful. So yes! It is better to be a religious people but not shy away from our responsibilities to maximize wealth and bring bad leaders to book. I shall enlist some ironical scenarios which would set the bar for this article.

World Population Review did a survey on the six countries with the highest percentage of Atheists. These are the countries ranked from top to bottom respectively: China, Japan, Czech Republic, France, Australia, and Iceland. Yes, you saw it right! China is atheist-dominated. The new kid on the block bears a population antagonistic to God. The prospect colonizers with an hidden agenda to conquer Africa through debt and subservience in the guise of aid. Iceland is the most peaceful nation in the world despite being irreligious.


1) Mixing Spirituality in Representation is an ailment Africans suffer.

Africa is mismanaged due to bad governance. There is every right for this rich stricken continent to be above ground. We have funnily subjected our minds to thinking that power comes from God and not the citizens or subjects. A misconstrued belief! Africans must awaken and realize the power they uphold to challenge bad governance. We give power to politicians to represent and fill positions of trust. We must in all ramifications critique and challenge policies unhealthy to our survival as one. A paramount venture! France is amongst the most irreligious nations in the world but are yet flourishing. Their voting system isn’t as polarized as ours, so it is policies and manifesto that speaks. You are held to strong account. The people’s power. Challenge bad leadership! Stand up and fight! All could be accompanied with prayer.

For me, I feel like the more we pray and not task, the more billions go missing in the treasury funds. We are steadfast prayer machines but has bad leadership change? Have we evolved past that dilemma?

2) The Opposition to Science and Medicine.

Do we know what spiritual cholera looks like? Is there such? This continent lacks proper health and medical systems. People can pass away from the minuit of diseases. I feel we must not shy away from science and medicine. Laying hands and commanding diseases to leave has not been helping. We must collaboratively work towards promoting the construction of hospitals and clinics to attend to urgent medical needs. Like the Christian Missionary Society (CMS), Churches and Mosques should champion medical and scientific projects too. I advocate for a “medical-quake” which would help boost the already dilapidated medical systems in Africa. It is not sinful to embark on space tourism projects and expeditions. Ironically, why should the most prayerful continent send its sons and daughters to China for medical treatment? Is that sensible to you?

Don’t turn to prayer when the foundation is rotten, when we have an idle population of aimless optimists. We need active development like China and France.

3) We ought to be peaceful

Is Africa unified? With conflicts emerging in nations like Ethiopia and militant insurgencies, I believe we have not been able to coexist and settle our internal dynamics. We must dig deep and unearth acts of insubordination within our ranks. China has been able to merge as a people. If we must aspire to enjoy relative peace, we must see ourselves of the same bloodline regardless of our religious beliefs. I burst into harden laughter when I watch Boko Haram militants, attack christians and churches in communities. Religiousity aside, we are all the same.

Our fight should be an objective bent on managing personal differences and include everyone onboard the trend of development and prosperity. Sierra Leone for instance, is home to numerous churches but ethnic compromise and regionalism still lives on. Should I talk of Nigeria that harbors the richest pastors in the world, but they are even divided and polarized. Secessionist movements echo their ideals and voice out their dissatisfaction over acts of sidelining and marginalization. Is it that our prayers do not work?


The problems of Africa deserves rigid steps. We must all be involved. My argument has always been for a better Africa. I am unable to fathom the reality of accepting that we are still poor and deprived despite being Prayerful. Faith without works is dead and I believe we must work assiduously for the betterment of Africa. For Christians and Muslims, imagine leaving a home appreciable to those behind. While prioritizing heaven, be in the know that you may be leaving Africa depreciable if the needful isn’t done to secure a better future for generations to come.


Author: Abu Bakarr Jalloh

Abu Bakarr Jalloh is a Sierra Leonean content writer, author, Neo Pan-African and founder of The African Dream, an online platform for inspiring, positive and compelling African stories. Contact: WhatsApp: +23276211583

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