Participants at the maiden edition of the Black Star Fest held at the Aburi Botanical Gardens have challenged the government of Ghana to walk the talk when it comes to welcoming Africans from the Diaspora. According to the panelists the current posturing of the government is quite deceptive since government makes it sound as if Ghana is ready to facilitate the integration of Africans from the diaspora however the reality on the ground is different.
Panelists at the first ever Black Star Fest in Ghana organized by Habesha Inc noted that much as the people of Ghana are friendly and welcoming, there is the need for legal backing to the repatriation movement to encourage many to return home. The panelists also advised folks who are interested in repatriating to Africa to prepare adequately and come with skills and resources to facilitate their survival and integration into Ghanaian communities. They also advised them to join the Black Star Line Cooperative Credit Union as a vehicle to facilitate repatriation and the development of our people.
The panelists were Dr Obadele Kambon, a senior research fellow at the University of Ghana; Donovan Cover, acting manager of the Black Star Line Cooperative Credit Union; Ras Ariel, a businessman and Ahuma Bosco Ocansey, the President of the Rastafari Council of Ghana.
Another panel discussion which took place at the festival focused on Ghana and Reggae Music with a panel made up of Lawrence Asiamah aka Bulldog an artiste manager; Kwesi Ofei Nyarko aka Root I, Director of Reggae at the Musicians Union of Ghana; Emmanuel Fiifi Botchway aka Fiifi Selah a musician and presenter with Pluzz FM, Titus Nana Ankomeah of Creative Business Alliance and Ahuma Bosco Ocansey, Director of Special Projects and Communications at (MUSIGA).
The discussions were moderated by Dejazmatch Kwesi Bonsu, an attorney practicing in Washington DC and founder of the Jamaica Music Conference with support from Akosua Boateng, an international music consultant based in the United States.
Habesha Inc is a U.S based organization with local operations led by Imara Solwasi. According to the organization’s Executive Director Cashawn Myers, the Black Star Fest is an annual event. The organization is into organic farming, organizing visits to Africa and activities aimed at the upliftment of African people.