January 20 marked the end of one of the saddest, scariest, most divisive eras in international politics. Outgoing US President Donald Trump, that scrofulous barbarian and bully, finally packed his bags and left the White House. He was and will always be a racist, sexist, pugnacious man whose true colours were neutralised by the fact that he was at the helm of the most powerful nation on earth, a nation that acts as if it has a monopoly on democracy.

In theory, it wouldn’t have been any of our business if he’d stayed on at the White House. It wouldn’t have mattered if he overthrew the democratically elected government of that country and installed the Ku Klux Klan in Capitol Hill. The sad reality is that, as Nobel peace laureate Wole Soyinka said of the tragic consequences of the January 6 storming of the Capitol, "When America stumbles, it is a big blow to democracy in other parts of the world. Dictators take courage from that."..

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