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Diasporian News of Friday, 13 October 2006

Source: Nana Sifa Twum/Isaac Amo Kyereme

Ghanaians In South East London Unite For Dev't

The number of Ghanaian associations in the city of London, continue to multiply with inaugurations almost every month.

Research by this reporter has indicated that there are nearly 200 Ghanaian clubs focusing on ethnic, professional, regional, cultural, religious and in some cases age and gender. All of these clubs are aiming at the unity and development of Ghana. They also aimed at seeking the holistic welfare of members and other needy members in the larger society.

The inauguration of yet another Ghanaians association took place over the last weekend of September. Ghanaian living in the South East section of London took the city by storm when over 300 resplendently dressed men and women converged at Saint Mary’s Banqueting Hall for the inauguration of their association. It was a great moments of joy and excitements as they enjoyed good smooth bone stimulating Ghanaian hip life and Hi life music on offer the dancing area of the banquet hall was filled to capacity as members expressed their joy for coming together

In the words of the founder of the association Nana Dwamena Akoto the primary aim was ‘to get Ghanaians together to help each other and their nation as a whole’. This laudable initiative propelled her to invite a few members to her home for monthly meetings. The idea caught on well and the formal inauguration of the Association was a dream comes true.

She stressed the need for Ghanaians to look beyond coming together for merry making, adding that ‘each of us needs to be his or her brothers’ keeper’. Nana Dwamena Akoto who is also a queen mother in Goaso in the Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana also re-iterated the need for the coming together to benefit Ghanaians back home especially, those in the remote parts of the Ghana by helping to provide them with basic facilities that would enhance their living conditions.

She expressed the optimism the new association would be one that will attract many people irrespective of where they reside in the city to assist in helping others who need help.
On his part the President of the Association Dr Thompson mentioned that the association was not a tribal or ethnic group and it was not formed to champion the agenda of any individual. “It is a Ghanaian group formed to unite us as a people in order to raise our economic and social status.” He observed. He asked Ghanaians to love one another and exhibit high sense of care for each other as practise in some ethnic communities in the UK. Dr. Thompson lauded the entrepreneurship acumen among such communities which has help build their respective countries and urged members of the association in particular and Ghanaians in general to emulate the practice.
Quoting from a study on how many times money turns over in some particular communities, Dr Thompson said “ when money enters the Jewish community it turns about seven times before it leaves the community, Amongst the Greek community money turns around about five times, amongst the Indian community it turns around about four times before it leaves the community.
“Sadly, money within the Ghanaian community leaves the community as soon as it comes in.” He lamented. He therefore urged the members to use the platform the association has created to create a financial and business support group to assist each other economically.
He cautioned that the association should not only use their monies for organising parties, funerals and picnics. The association should look to invest its money in profitable ventures so it can help its members and Ghana as a whole.