Diasporian News of Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Source: ACONA Secretariat

ACONA highlights homecoming and Asante Day-Congress 2014

The Asanteman Council of North America (ACONA) celebrated its annual Asante Day/Congress in the Greater Cincinnati Area during the Labor Day weekend of August 31st to September 2nd 2013.

For the first time in the Congress history, ACONA combined the installation and swearing-in of the Asantefuohene, Nana Adu-Poku, Asantefuohemaa, Nana Abenaa Obiyaa, sub-chiefs and queen-mothers to Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Asantehene. Otumfuo was represented by Nana Adusei Atwenewa Ampem, Omanhene (Paramount Chief) of Tepa traditional area, who is also Otumfuo’s ACONA Ambassador. Nana Tepahene was accompanied by Nana Osei Kwadwo, Mamesenhene and Oheneba Osei Pipim all of Manhyia Palace, Kumasi.

The Asante Congress began with a review of ACONA’s activities for the past year, culminating in the adoption of a new 5-year development plan that focuses on the areas of Health, Education, Environment, and Energy, and covering the geographical areas of the Asante Kingdom which spans four regions of Ghana.

A soon to be incorporated Asante Development Foundation, ADF will partner with member ACONA Associations, the Otumfuo Charity Foundation in Ghana, and other philanthropic organizations in North America and other parts of the world (referred to as ADF Strategic Partners), to initiate and establish development projects with the following strategic goals, and under the areas identified as critical to ADF purpose:

Health To develop, establish and support rural clinics in the Kingdom for quality healthcare delivery. Our Strategic partners will be encouraged to adopt clinics in the rural areas for support and provision of medical equipment and supplies.

Education To source and award scholarships, and in-kind educational support to needy students of junior and senior high schools in the Kingdom, especially focusing on rising female students.

The Environment To work with the traditional Paramount Chiefs in the Kingdom to establish programs to quell the degradation of forest reserves and water resources, while protecting and sustaining the environment.

Energy To explore alternative and other renewable energy sources, including solar to compliment the capacity utilization of the electric grid in Ghana, especially in the rural areas.

A new set of ACONA by-laws has been adopted to help facilitate the implementation of ADF strategic goals and objectives. The new by-laws also include establishing executive secretariats in each member organization to help in the administration of the day-to-day activities of the organizations.

Executive Elections A new Executive team has been elected to run the affairs of the Council for a 3-year term that began January 1, 2014. Prof. Kwaku Agyemang Duah (Washington, DC), the former Assistant Executive Secretary now becomes the new the Executive Secretary, with Osofo Kwabena Agyarkwa-Boansi (Denver, Colorado) stepping up to the position of Assistant Executive Secretary. Mr. Charles Kwadwo Manu (New York Abusuapanin) is the current Treasurer, Nana Yaw Kaakyire Marfo (Chicago), Public Relations Officer, Ms. Diana Ahenkora (N. Carolina), Women’s Organizer, while Nana Kwabena Bonsu of Cincinnati Ohio and Nana Akosua Brayie of Toronto, Canada will double up as National Youth Organizers.

A New Member of the ACONA Family The Asanteman Association of Columbus Ohio, led by Mr. Isaac Osei Tutu and Obaapanin Nana Abena Gyamfua has been admitted as the newest member of the Council.

Asanteman Homecoming – 2014 The Asanteman Homecoming Project was conceived as a “PILGRIMAGE” to Asanteman by Asante Diasporans and friends of Asanteman in North America. The objectives are as follows:

  • To establish mutually beneficial engagements and cooperation between Asantes in North America and Asanteman at home, in exploring development opportunities in the areas of Education, Health and Economic Development.

  • To Introduce the Asante Family Reunion, helping to establish family ties between North American family members and distant relatives at home.

  • To introduce and establish long-term and sustained cultural education for the Asante youth, thereby seeking to promote the youth’s involvement and participation in contributing to the social and economic development of Asanteman.

To commemorate the 15th anniversary of the enstoolment of Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, and in addition to participating in the celebration of his 64th birthday, the Asanteman Council of North America is organizing a Grand Homecoming Event to Ghana, allowing Asantes and friends in the diaspora to converge in the Garden City for the celebrations during the month of April/May 2014.

A week-long program of ACONA activities during the celebrations has been scheduled for May 6 – 11, 2014. Specific activities include:

  • Workshops on Asante history and contemporary issues

  • Visits to Asanteman Historic Sites

  • Voluntary Activities

  • Business Forum

  • Fundraising Dinner Dance

  • Akwasidae (Grand Durbar) Celebration, when Otumfuo will sit in state to receive homage from his subjects, including ACONA chiefs, queen mothers, representatives and friends from North America.

Asante Day - 2014 The Council has scheduled the next Asante Day/Congress to be held in Washington D.C. during the Labor Day Weekend of 2014. Established by the ACONA Constitution, Asante Day/Congress has the following goals:

  • To bring Asantes together to assess their potential for development, and to mobilize resources for development projects.

  • To help bridge the gap between Africans and peoples of African descent in the Diaspora

  • To initiate inter-cultural and educational exchange programs with the world community, in order to promote understanding and general well-being.

  • To organize workshops to inculcate core Asanteban values into our youth.

  • To promote the image of Ghana, fostering unity among all Ghanaians.

For further information contact: (214)718-8393 * (301) 602-4939 * (720) 363-0706 * 301-213-9114