Word Echoes from SANZ: “African Liberation Day/Africa Day”
Written by Helewise Arends on May 23, 2018
May 25 is Africa Day, formerly known as African Liberation Day
When African countries celebrate the hard-fought achievement of
freedom from European colonial powers.
The First Congress of Independent African States was held in Accra, Ghana on 15 April 1956.
It was comprised of representatives from Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Liberia, Libya, Morocco, Sudan,
Tunisia, Union of the People of Cameroon.The Union of South Africa was not invited.
The conference called for the founding of an African Freedom Day
A day to “mark each year the onward progress of liberation movements on the African continent
in addition to symbolizing the determination of the peoples of Africa to free themselves
from foreign domination and exploitation.”
Five years later, on 25 May 1963, representatives of the 30 African nations met in Addis Ababa,
Ethiopia with more than 2/3 of the continent having achieved independence.
At this summit African Freedom Day became African Liberation Day (ALD) and the
Organization of African Unity (OAU) was founded, with the initial aim to encourage
the decolonization of Angola, Mozambique, South Africa and Southern Rhodesia.
By 1971 Pan-Africanism had become the dominant discussion in the African world.
As a result of the peoples struggle in the 1990s we have witnessed the defeat of Apartheid,
the heroic decision of OAU to break sanctions against Libya,
and the Congo victory by pro-African forces.
In 2002 the OAU was replaced by the African Union (AU).
As we look forward to celebrating the 62nd anniversary of the ALD we still see an African people that are still not free.
Worldwide we suffer from the same conditions: racism, oppression, poverty, unemployment,
lack of proper housing and medical care.It is an ironic contradiction that we live on the richest continent
(in terms of natural resources) on the earth, but we are among the poorest people.
The 2018 theme is ‘Focus on Education’.
Through political education, the masses will be armed with knowledge and understanding
of transforming our capitalist mentality into a “revolutionary African personality”,
which is characterized by our traditional African beliefs of humanism (every individual has an innate integrity to them)
egalitarianism (everyone has a right & responsibility to make a contribution to society)
and collectivism (work is done collectively and the individual is responsible to the group and the group to the individual).
ALD/ AD is not just an event (check your local listings), but a day to honor our ancestors and celebrate our victories
in the spirit of “UBUNTU” = “I am because we are” = “Humanity towards others”
Long Live the #SpiritofAfricaUnified!
AFRICA – WIYAALA’s Song for African Unity
BLOGGER: HELEWISE ARENDS