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General News of Wednesday, 30 July 2003

Source: GNA

Wreath laying ceremonies mark Emancipation Day

Accra July 30 GNA- Special Wreath Laying Ceremonies were on Wednesday held in Accra as part of celebrations marking this year's Emancipation Day.

The three separate ceremonies were performed at the Dr. W.E.B DuBois Centre, George Padmore Library and the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum. This year's Emancipation Day celebrations is under the theme: "Emancipation: Our heritage, Our strength".

In all five different wreaths were laid at the three separate ceremonies.

Master Kweku Atia of St. Thomas Aquinas Secondary School laid the first wreath on behalf of the Youth of Africa, while Mr. Maisie Howell laid the second wreath on behalf of Caribbean Association of Ghana.

Ms. Annie Hall laid the next wreath for the African-American Association of Ghana, while Simon Alhassan laid the fourth wreath for the Traditional rulers in the country.

Alhaji Rashid Bawa, Minister of State, Youth and Sports performed the last ceremony on behalf of the Government and people of Ghana. In an address Nana Akomea, Minister of Information said the emancipation day symbolizes freedom for millions of Africans from slavery in the Americas, the Caribbean and Europe.

"Those 200 years of slavery were without doubt the most brutal example of subjugation and inhumanity in modern history" The Minister said Africans are in for another emancipation, this time the struggle for social, cultural and economic emancipation. "Our freedom from slavery and colonialism will be meaningless without a freedom of our minds"

He said Africa is the world poorest continent and also the least represented as far as global culture and social development is concern. "The stories of mass famine, wars, genocide and wicked leadership have become too familiar in Africa"

On his part, Alhaji Rashid Bawa urged the delegates to appreciate the sacrificial works done by stalwarts like W.E.B.DuBois and others. " As a symbol of this remembrance and acknowledgement, we have come to pay our respect to him and his other colleagues"

He asked the delegates for a minute's silence to be observed for the late Sonny Carson, who brought the remains of his ancestor, Samuel Carson to be reburied at Assin Manso in 1998. There were fraternal and goodwill messages from the African-Americans and Caribbeans in the Diaspora and the representatives from the African Union.