After the Abolition Act 1833, Emancipation Day came into full force on August 1st, 1834 to commemorate the final abolition of chattel slavery of the British colonies. It is an annual event that takes place throughout British Colonies especially Caribbean islands such as Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago. It is also celebrated in Canada and parts of America and Europe due to the Diaspora movements. Mainly on August 1st but on various dates throughout the year. A public holiday in some countries. In London on 1st August the Afrikan Emancipation Day reparation march takes place from Brixton Windrush Square to House of Parliament.
Emancipation Day has been celebrated in Ghana since 1998 – the first African nation paved as a gateway to the African homeland of the Diasporas. Many activities planned with the Ghana Tourism and Cultural minister collaborations with Pan African and Diaspora organisations.
A programmed of events/activities leading up to 1st August took place from 25th July and commenced with a wreath-laying ceremony to honour Pan-Africanism-Dr. William Edward Burghardt Du Bois, George Padmore and Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.
A re-enactment of the crossing of the river Pra at Assin Praso where captured slaves had their last bath aka Slave River (Ndonko Nsuo).
Candlelight procession, reverential nights, testimonies, concert and grand debars of chiefs and people at Cape Coast castle and Assin Manso.
On 1st August I attended the Pan-Afrikan Reparatory Justice International Libation Ceremony that took place at Osekan Rock Retreat in Accra.
The event was initiated by Ablodevava cultural Music group who sang a song asking for permission for the house/floor to be open so that the ceremony can commence.
Opening prayer and libation by Nae-Numo Akwa Mensa 2nd
Opening remarks from co-chairperson Matso dedo Azu
Moment of meditation with Golden Axioms for Reflection – paying tribute to the ancestors and key role figures in liberation.
Special message from Accra through London to all everywhere by Professor Kweku Senah on behalf of Sankofaapae Global Organizing Committee. He told a story about Trinidad implying that there was no Africans here. One day heard drumming and informed them that that represented the African Ewe tribe.
Special Libation freedom fighting ceremony by Opanin Kwame Dede Akuamoah representing the various communities of reparation –
‘calling on ancestors and departed souls those who fought and still fighting, give us the courage, strength to always fight. Give us spirit of fighting – shall emerge victorious one day’. To end the ceremonies there was a solidarity message through song and dance followed by closing remarks.
After the ceremonies we were given Asana. Asana drink – made from fermented corn dough water. Also known as corn beer. Refreshing local drink. Ground corn, water, sugar, milk. The corn is crushed, added to water and soaked for 3 days to become fermented. Then boiled for about 40 mins until the foam disappears. Strained corn is then added to caramalized sugar (heated sugar), then the strained corn water is added to sugar and stirred.
I networked and made new acquaintances with Ghanaians and people from Trinidad, Martinique and Jamaica who had repatriated to Ghana.
it was a really nice ceremony were I was able to pay tribute and respect to the ancestors who fought for freedom and justice and to all who are still fighting for reparation – the struggle continues.
Our Heritage, Our Strength
bless Sister E