Ghana today begun the celebrations of this year’s Black History Month with a launch, joining the US, Canada, UK Ireland, and the Netherlands to commemorate month dedicated to remembering important people and events in the history of the African Diaspora.
The theme for the celebration is “Black Migration: Exploring our roots and beyond. The launch which was held at the W.E.B. Dubois Centre in Accra, had in attendance a broad spectrum of dignitaries including the US Ambassador to Ghana, CEO of GTA, PANFEST Foundation, Director of the W.E.B. Dubois Centre, Director of Diaspora Affairs at the at the Presidency, President of the Women in Tourism Ghana, Honorary Consul of Trinidad and Tobago, members of the African American Association of Ghana (AAAG) and the general diaspora community in Ghana.
The observation of Black History Month is part of the many activities earmarked for the Year of Return – Ghana 2019 and it is being spearheaded by AAAG and the Year of Return Secretariat.
President of AAAG, organisers of the event, Gail Nikoi, in a speech said that it was extremely important that we come together for Black History Month, especially in the this Year of Return , acknowledging and giving honour to both those who perished during the journey to the Americas and those who survived.
On her part the US Ambassador to Ghana, H.E. Stephanie Sullivan said: “As we celebrate Black History Month, we recognize both the challenges and achievements of African Americans. This week at the US Embassy, we had an amazing Black History Month programme held by our staff as we recognised that Black History is American History. Black migration in the United States, as well as globally have created important connections that have both challenged and inspired us.”
Director of Diaspora Affairs at the Office of the President, Akwasi Ababio said government working to ease the process of reintegrating African Americans into Ghana. He mentioned that those who have successfully acquired Ghanaian citizenship will soon be introduced and that opportunities are being created for more diasporans to come into the country.
As part of the celebrations the AAG will host for days, Dr. Nia Imara, the first African American woman to earn a PhD in astrophysics from University of California, Berkley and currently lectures at Harvard. She is expected to interact with almost 3,000 students in several different regions about science technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. Dr. Imara is due for Ghana next week.
The African American Association of Ghana is committed to facilitate the cultural, social, educational and economic integration of African American and other people of African descent returning from the Diaspora into Ghanaian society.
By: Samuel Obeng Appah