Ghana: “Use PANAFEST to reduce modern forms of Slavery in Africa” Vice Prez

| July 29, 2011

The Vice President of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama has urged African leaders and people of African descent in the Diaspora, to use the celebration of Pan Africa Festival (PANAFEST) and Emancipation Day to defeat modern day slavery that is confronting Africa today.

According to the Vice President the celebration should not only be used to create doors of rebirth or build bridges reconnecting  Africans at home and those in the Diaspora but rather it should help showcase the vast culture and traditions, as well as the good story of Africa.
The theme of the celebration was “Re-uniting the African Family: challenges and Prospects.”
The Vice President said this in an Akwaaba (Welcome) ceremony held at the Jubilee Park of Cape Coast in the Central Region of Ghana.
The ceremony saw traditional rulers in all the 10 Regions of Ghana welcoming the sons and daughters in the Diaspora. Each person was marked with a clay on their left hand to signify their homecoming and uniting with their African family.
In the mid 1980`s, PANAFEST was mooted by the late Efuah Sutherland as “a cultural vehicle for bringing Africans on the continent in the

Vice President of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama

Diaspora together around issues raised by slavery which remain suppressed”.

PANAFEST is a Cultural event dedicated to the enhancement of the ideas of Pan Africanism and people of African descent to return to their ancestral homeland and come together and establish the truth about the history of Africa. (Saul Sebag-Montefiore)
The official opening of this year`s PANAFEST was 25th July, 2011, with all traditional Chiefs in the 10 Regions invited.  Also, 26 July, saw an official visit to Elmina Castle in the Central Region of Ghana for historical remembrance of Slavery.

A Pan African Festival Band

On the 27th -28th July,  a “moving emancipation day forward” conference was held followed by a river crossing.

On the 31st July, will be a traditional day where remaining ceremonies and repeating marriage vows will occur before traditional walk to Cape Coast Castle.
Over the years, the PANAFEST and Emancipation Day have attracted notable personalities such as political leaders, intellectuals, and eminent personalities, investors and tourists.

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