‘Francophonie’ arrived relatively recently in Africa; it has only been systematically nurtured since the colonial occupation. The French have often even believed that the French language was ‘the best solution’ for Africa. Was there not, after all, only one culture, the French culture? And therefore it must, as far as possible, be spread throughout the world. A commission set up to formulate France's aid policy to developing countries confirmed the necessity ever to extend the influence of the French language as follows:
La France désire, plus que toute autre nation, diffuser au loin sa langue et sa culture. Son besoin de rayonnement intellectuel trouve bon emploi auprès de peuples dont la langue convient mal aux idées et aux techniques modernes (…): elle leur apporte un mode d'expression et une méthode de pensée.