BERGAMO, ITALY - Thursday, April 18, 2024: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté lines-up before during the UEFA Europa League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg match between BC Atalanta and Liverpool FC at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia. Liverpool won 1-0 but Atalanta progress 3-1 on aggregate. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

‘Diversity is strength’ – Ibrahima Konate’s perfect response to far-right politicians

Ibrahima Konate brilliantly used his platform to address far-right politicians and how diversity is a strength, not a weakness or something to be scared of.

The rise of far-right politics around the world is becoming scarily familiar, with many seeking to divide populations rather than unite, and we have it in our own backyard in the UK.

It is the same in France, a country that is preparing to vote in its parliamentary election, and while many will say to keep politics out of sport, it is impossible as it is a microcosm of society.

It is why it was uplifting to hear Konate speak passionately about how we should all be embracing diversity as he spoke of his worries over what is happening in France, including the rise of racism.

In a press conference on Saturday, Konate said, as quoted by the Athletic: “Of course what is happening in France worries me. We can’t leave power in the hands of people who want to divide people.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, March 2, 2016: Liverpool supporters' banner on the Spion Kop 'Unity is strength' before the Premier League match against Manchester City at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Diversity is France’s strength. I come from an immigrant family. Prejudice and stereotypes have to stop. We all have to be together in all circumstances.”

Konate’s words come following Kylian Mbappe urging French voters to stand against “extremist” parties. Liverpool’s defender added: “I’m saddened by the ban on wearing the veil in the public space.

“You never hear from the people affected by these issues. You have to look beyond appearances, beyond skin colours, you have to go and meet the other person.

“You can’t make a jigsaw puzzle with just the same pieces. You need diversity, different pieces to build something solid.

“There’s always a minority who will harm the majority. My parents have (had) jobs as cleaning ladies, bin men, with impossible working hours, and when I see that we don’t highlight these kinds of people who have given their health for France, it saddens me.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, September 20, 2023: Liverpool's Dominik Szoboszlai (L) with Liverpoolís Ibrahima Konate during a training session at the AXA Training Centre ahead of the UEFA Europa League Group E match between LASK and Liverpool FC. (Pic by Andrew Yeats/Propaganda)

“I encourage everyone to go and vote, I know it’s a personal choice, I don’t tell people what to vote for, but we have to be together in all circumstances.

“Life is short, it’s beautiful, and we have to enjoy it and be together and not be divisive.”

Is right, Ibou.