General News of Monday, 16 September 2019
A requiem mass to mark one year anniversary in honour of the late Professor Atukwei Okai has been held in Accra.
The solemn ceremony was held at the Accra Ridge Church where the Professor before his demise a year ago, fellowshipped.
Hundreds of loved ones from all walks of life including friends from the Diplomatic Corp, development partners, poets, traditional leaders among others attended to pay homage in remembrance of him.
Delivering a sermon to commemorate the day, Reverend Father Eric Owusu, Priest of the Accra Ridge Church said the occasion should not only be treated as one in honour of the late professor but an opportunity to reflect on daily lives activity, adding that, it should encourage people to live a life worthy of emulation.
He recalled that the late Professor Okai was a humble and a pleasant person whose acts and actions depicted what he believed in.
“It is a time to reminisce and reflect, to recall the virtues of our father Professor Atukwei Okai, Pan Africans and idealist. He gave his time, his talents to the things that he believed in; public servant, the dedication, the honesty and integrity, the virtues we recall that we so much lack today. It is the time to recall those virtues and to reflect on our time and ask ourselves where we have gone wrong.
“We therefore celebrate him because of the impact, the positives he made on our lives”, he said.
He advocated government and relevant stakeholders to ensure the ideas and other relevant materials left for the nation by such fallen heroes were institutionalised and celebrated.
Professor Okai was a celebrated poet and Pan Africanist who dedicated his life to the advancement of Pan Africanism on the continent and in the diaspora.
He held Masters Degree from major education institutions from across the world, notably from the School of Slavonic, in the United Kingdom, Gorky Literary Institute in Russia, among others and served in different capacities of various state institutions and associations.
In 1982, he briefly served as the first Regional Secretary of Accra and spear headed the enactment of the law establishing the Greater Accra Region, as well as the Head of the Ga Dangme Department of Education at the University of Education, Winneba in 2004.
Professor Okai was also a member of the Ghana Society of Writers, a precursor to the current Ghana Association of Writers and the Pan African Writers’ Association (PAWA).
He died on the 13th of July, 2018 aged 77 after a short illness.