2020 Emancipation Commemoration
The 2020 Emancipation Celebrations is under the theme, ‘Emancipation, Our Heritage, our Strength and under the sub theme, Leveraging Our Resilience: Black Lives Matter was launched virtually via zoom on 13th July, 2020.
A Wreath laying ceremony was held on 27th July, 2020 at the three venues namely W.E.B. Du Bois Centre, George Padmore Library and the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park to emphasize the resilience of the African on both sides of the Atlantic.
Watch Live Streams of Wreath-Laying Ceremonies
- DuBois Centre – https://web.facebook.com/watch/?v=4349809941703821
- George Padmore Library – https://web.facebook.com/watch/?v=276113693693439
- Kwame Nkrumah Memeorial park – https://web.facebook.com/watch/?v=316163879565820
Other Programme of activities lined up for this year’s celebrations include:
TUESDAY, 28TH JULY- PANEL DISCUSSION
- A virtual panel discussion will be held on 28th July 2020. The topic for the discussion is LEVERAGING OUR RESILIENCE: BLACK LIVES MATTER. Speakers at the event will include Rabbi Kohain Halevi , Diaspora Coalition, Lala London, Author , Lou Gosset Junior , American actor and Prof. Kojo Yankah , a Panafricanist . The host of the panel discussion is Aisha Addo, founder power to girls Foundation. The event will provide a platform for intellectually stimulating expert discussions and interactions.
THURSDAY, 30TH JULY- TREE PLANTING AT ASSIN PRASO AND IN ALL REGIONS
- There will be tree planting at Assin Praso Heritage Village. The Ghana Tourism Authority regional offices will undertake similar activity nationwide.
FRIDAY, 31ST JULY- REVERENTIAL NIGHT
- The Reverential Night scheduled for July 31st on the eve of the Emancipation Proclamation on 1stAugust begins with a candle light procession from the main entrance of the Cape Coast Castle to the Dungeon and then to the Cape Coast Castle Courtyard.
SATURDAY, 1ST AUGUST – HEALING CEREMONY AT ASSIN MANSO
- There will be wreath laying ceremony at the graves of the interred Africans Carson and Crystal. The tomb for the unknown slave from Barbados will be unveiled. It will be followed by a visit to the Nnokosuo for meditation, reflection and healing prayers.
Ghana became the first African nation to join in the celebration in 1998 to re-affirm its status as the Gateway to the African Homeland of Diasporans. Ghana’s claim to the position of the gateway to the Homeland is well-grounded in the fact that it was a major exit point for slaves on the West Coast in the period that the infamous trade took place.
2020 Emancipation Program
Over 40 Forts & Castles built along Ghana’s coast which were used as trading centres for trading especially the Slave trade. Three of these castles; St. George’s Castle and St. Jago fort, both at Elmina and Cape Coast Castle, designated by UNESCO as World Heritage sites. As a complement to these Forts and Castles, we are developing the Slave Route Project, which seeks to rehabilitate, restore and promote the tangible and intangible heritage from the slave trade, is being implemented.
This route takes the tourist through communities where resistance was put up against the slave raiders, like Gwollu and Nalerigu with their defensive walls; slave market sites like Saakpili and Salaga, the slave bathing rivers and slave burial grounds at Assin-Manso among others. Emancipation Celebrations usually begins with wreath-laying ceremonies at W.E.B. Du Bois Centre, George Padmore Library and Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park in memory of their contributions to the emancipation of Africans (blacks).
Durbars are also held at major centres along the slave route i.e. Assin Praso and Assin Manso to create an opportunity for diasporans to interact with the communities. The main theme under which Emancipation is held is “Emancipation, Our Heritage, Our Strength”. At Assin Praso, participants partake in the River Crossing ceremony while at Assin Manso wreaths are laid on the tombs of returned remains of Diasporans from Jamaica. Other programmes lined up for the celebration include a Reverential night at the Cape Coast Castle.
Emancipation Celebration is an annual event in Ghana, the Black Star of Africa and the gateway to the Homeland of people of African descent in the Diaspora. Emancipation was originally celebrated in the Caribbean to commemorate the final abolition of Chatel Slavery in the British colonies on 1st August 1834.
Emancipation is organised by the Ghana Tourism Authority under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture in partnership with the PANAFEST Foundation.
It is commemorated formJuly to August each year.