08

Feb
2019

Year of Return Ghana to attract 500,000 Diasporan Africans

Posted By : Collins/ 119 0

Mr Akwasi Agyemang (left), Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Tourism Authority, addressing participants at the press launch of “The Year of Return Ghana 2019” in Accra. Picture: ESTHER ADJEI

About half a million Africans in the Diaspora are expected to arrive in the country to take part in “The Year of Return Ghana 2019”, a historic campaign to mark the end of 400 years of the slave trade in Ghana.

According to the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), out of the number, 350,000 participants would come from North America, while the rest would come from the Caribbean, South America and Europe.

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The calendar of events include a Black History Month in February, Ghana’s Independence Day celebration in March, Heritage Paragliding Festival in April, Ghana-Jamaica Homecoming Festival between April and May, the Pan-African Festival of Arts and Culture (PANAFEST) from July to August and Emancipation Day in August.

The campaign was launched by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at America’s National Press Club in Washington, DC, in September 2018.

The tourism bonanza is expected to build on the legacy of other Pan-African projects, such as the Joseph Project, Emancipation Day and PANAFEST.

“We believe the event will present us with an opportunity to attract more people who will come and invest and employ Ghanaians,” he said.

Making Ghana attractive for youth

The Director of Diaspora Affairs at the Office of the President, Mr Akwasi Awua Ababio, who also addressed the conference, said as Ghana continued to be the headquarters for the fight for African liberation and the symbol of hope for African emancipation, it continued to seek deeper socio-cultural, economic and political inclusion for “our kith and kin from the Diaspora”.

“As we mark the Year of Return to bring our Diasporan community home, the government is also committed to improving upon our economy and discouraging irregular migration by making sure that young men and women could achieve their dreams here in Ghana,” he said.

Showcase best part of Ghana

Ghana’s Ambassador to the United States (US), Dr Barfuor Adjei-Barwuah, said the Ghana Embassy in the USA was making every effort to attract African-Americans to the country, not only to come and spend but also enjoy the hospitality here.

He expressed the hope that Ghanaians would grab the opportunity to display how loving and hospitable they were to those who would arrive in the country in 2019 and beyond.

“We have to take this opportunity to showcase the country and the kind of loving and welcoming people we are to encourage people to come and do respectable investments,” he added.

Source: Daily Graphic

The “Year of Return, Ghana 2019” is a major landmark spiritual and birth-right journey inviting the Global African family, home and abroad, to mark 400 years of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in Jamestown, Virginia. The arrival of enslaved Africans marked a sordid and sad period, when our kith and kin were forcefully taken away from Africa into years of deprivation, humiliation and torture. While August 2019 marks 400 years since enslaved Africans arrived in the United States, “The Year of Return, Ghana 2019” celebrates the cumulative resilience of all the victims of the Trans Atlantic slave Trade who were scattered and displaced through the world in North America, South America, the Caribbean, Europe and Asia.

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