Great African-Americans Who Were Once In Ghana

Ali 5

Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay’s) visit to Ghana in 1964: In the photo with Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, first president of Ghana. 

Among all the West African countries, Ghana, the country formally called Gold Coast, is one of the famous countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. Apart from being one of the peaceful countries in West Africa, Ghana has been also one of the most visited countries in Africa by Africans in the Diaspora.

There is a reason Ghana is attracted to Africans in the Diaspora. Echoes of sad music in the air can be heard from Cape Coast, attracting thousands of tourists including African-Americans and other Africans in the Diaspora to visit Ghana, where their ancestors were packed like a sardine into ships for slavery.

Apart from the fact that many Africans in the Diaspora go to Ghana to trace their roots or find their ancestors, Ghana was once under one of Africa’s most powerful and intelligent leaders, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. He was the first African statesman to achieve world recognition when he became president of the new Republic of Ghana in 1960 after Ghana attains its independence in 1957.

He campaigned ceaselessly for African solidarity and for the liberation of southern Africa from white settler rule. His greatest achievement was to win the right of black peoples in Africa, to have a vote and to determine their own destiny. Nkrumah’s popularity which was like a bushfire in the dry season brought him fame and also created a lot of enemies against him.

Many famous African-Americans, including Malcolm X, W.E.B Du Bois, Stevie Wonder, Maya Angelou etc. were all in Ghana. In the summer of 1964, Muhammad Ali took a trip to Ghana, a remarkable visit the boxer called “a return to the fatherland.” In the VIP room of the Accra Airport, he was greeted by Ghana’s Foreign Minister Kojo Botsio. According to a report,  about 10,000 African Americans visit Ghana yearly, and almost 3,000 of them live in the capital, Accra.

On February 24th, 1966, Nkrumah was overthrown in a coup, master-minded by the CIA, after surviving many assassination attempts. He fled to the Republic of Guinea to be with his friend Sekou Touré for a number of years and spent his later years in exile in Bucharest, Romania and died on 27 April 1972.

Exploring Slave Dungeons At Cape Coast Castle

castle 2

Tourists exploring a slave dungeon at the Cape Coast castle

The mere mention of slavery brings bad memories, as it harboured unimaginable evil act, as thousands of Africans were captured under inhuman circumstances in overcrowded dungeons and transported across the Atlantic to the New World. Even though slavery is long abolished, the African still bears the psychological scars, as he fights to regain his lost identity and respect among mankind on the surface of the earth today.

The slave trade in Ghana mainly took place at coastal towns, but I wish to write about Cape Coast, my country of birth, which was the center of the British slave trade for almost 150 years. Cape Coast is located in the central region of Ghana. It was the capital of Gold Coast between 1700 until 1877 when the capital was shifted to Accra. Ghana replaced Gold Coast when the country achieved its independence in 1957.

Echoes of sad music in the air can be heard from Cape Coast, attracting thousands of tourists including African-Americans and other Africans in the Diaspora to visit the place, where their ancestors were packed like a sardine into ships for slavery. There is a proverb in Ghana which says “Man don’t cry.” I’m beginning to question this proverb if it has any elements of truth because many Africans in the Diaspora who visit Cape Coast castle can’t hold back their tears.

The psychological effect and emotions over Cape Coast Castle, which still has the remnants of the slave trade, are unbearable. President Obama, wife, Michelle and children can’t forget the experience of touring the preserved sites. One can’t escape the cold waves which go through the spine. Even though many Africans in the Diaspora haven’t been to Ghana to trace their roots or visit Cape Coast, others had. The Pan African Historical Festival, simply called PANAFEST is a cultural event which has brought thousands of African-Americans to visit Cape Coast.

Visiting Cape Coast Castle to understand the pain and suffering endured by the millions of slaves is an important step for African-Americans and other Africans in the Diaspora to be closer to Africa. It is sad to note that many hate to be referred to as Africans, even though history about their origin isn’t a fabricated story. It seems that’s the way to help forget this bitter experience, but there is nothing satisfying than visiting the continent of your origin to discover the reality aspects of a sad journey.

Forts and castles built by Europeans between 1482 and 1786, serving as slave depots are still visible in Ghana. Apart from the Cape Coast Castle, are also Elmina and Christiansburg Castles.  Ghana invites you. Be part of other tourists to visit Cape Coast, to see the male dungeon, female dungeon, remnants and the reality of cruelty of slavery, committed by White Slave Masters.

_______________________________________________

Where Is Clarence Williams III, After The Moud Sqaud?: The Influence of Television Films In Africa

Clarence 4

The Mod Squad, featuring Michael Cole, Clarence Williams III and Peggy Lipton, played a significant role in the entertainment scene in Ghana. 

It is often said that Africa is a continent plagued by war, conflict, poverty and diseases, but the discipline, endurance and the survival on that harsh continent, which have never been the pride of the foreign media, could have been very good education for the advanced world, including Europe and America, to stand stress, frustration and other life turmoils. 

Africans are tough, immune to suffering and can adapt to every situation than Africans in the Diaspora and Europeans. Apart from the influence of the Bible, the role of churches and gospel music, television has played a significant role in entertainment history in Africa. The national coverage of television films from Ghana Broadcasting Corporation helped transformed Ghana.

Ghana was one of the happiest African countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa and still remains a peaceful and God fearing country. That doesn’t mean there is no crime. I remember in the early seventies, foreign television film inspired the first kidnapping story in the crime history of Ghana. Three young men made names for themselves and became fugitives when they kidnapped a car dealer’s son for ransom.

The entertainment scene in Ghana during the 6O’s and 70’s was amazing. Apart from Bonanza, featuring the Family Cartwright, Department ‘S’ featuring Peter Wyngarde and Joel Fabiani, Roger Moore as ‘The Saint,’ David Janssen as Richard Kimble in the fugitive etc; ‘The Mod Squad’ a group of two handsome men,  Clarence Williams III and Michael Cole and a pretty lady called Peggy Lipton, made some groundbreaking advancements in Ghana’s entertainment.

I missed those wonderful golden years; thanks to the birth of technology, making it possible to view those wonderful old television series today. Some of the great film stars may have gone or still living, but the role they played in Ghana’s entertainment and Africa generally shall never be forgotten.

Clarence 3

Clarence Williams III today

One of my dreams is to see Europe and America media, lifting the image of Africa to educate Europeans and Americans on how Africans cope with all the hardships. Why many criticize about Africa’s weak educational system, yet teenage pregnancy, smoking and alcoholism are problems Britain and America are facing today? Why so much suicide in Europe and America than Africa? Because the life of Africans is much influenced by the gospel. Above all the entertainment scene from the sixties in Africa was a key to provide young children the experience, teaching, skills and the critical thinking to survive on that harsh continent.

The Harm Is Already Done: The African Continent Is On The Verge Of Total Collapse Without Remedy

Leader 3

By Joel Savage and Johan Van Dongen

“Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it.” The truth in this axiom can’t be ignored, since African politicians and leaders failed to protect Africans and Africa, after the horrifying events of colonialism and medical crimes in the continent of Africa. Africa is a continent citizens are used as Guinea pigs and rats to test all dangerous drugs manufactured in Europe and United States of America.

Whatever medical crimes during and after colonialism, that took place in Africa, is just the tip of the iceberg, the entire African continent is on the verge of total collapse, which will destroy its economy beyond remedy. Lack of education, expertise, and poverty are some of the causes which have rendered Africa, remote and helpless, to depend on the West and America for miraculous solutions, giving them the free license to continue harming Africa in a ‘friendly’ manner with impunity.

Despite all the raw materials Africa has, the economy, health system and educational institutions, still remain weak and fragile. Years after colonialism, Africa still depends heavily on former colonial masters. Many times I asked, the significance of independence in Africa, when leaders still bring their pans, begging for food and financial aid in advanced countries.

Since African leaders heavily depend on the West and the United States of America, whatever economic or financial crisis Europe and America faces, affects Africa. Aids is a disease killing thousands of Africans each day, yet there are HIV/Aids patients in Europe and America, who are still living after got the disease twenty years ago.

So what kind of medicines are Europeans and United States of America supply to Africa to deal with its HIV/Aids and Ebola patients? One thing African leaders need to realize now is, the more they depend on the West and America, the possibility to face more economic and medical crisis, because the use of Africans as rats to test drugs will continue unabated.

Leader 2

In the past, America used homosexuals, mentally handicapped and homeless people to test their evil drugs. Ex-president Bill Clinton has apologized; promising history will not be repeated. That means Africa is the only continent easy to penetrate to commit their heinous medical crimes.

If Ebola is not a medical crime, why should Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia experienced it at the same time in West Africa? How long will African leaders sit aside and look while Africa becomes a dumping ground for all unwanted stuff from Europe and American and Africans used to test all dangerous drugs?

On many occasions African leaders participating in conferences and forums in Europe and America, will do everything to avoid being interviewed by an African journalist, because they are scared to face the reality, questions they aren’t prepared to answer, but ignorantly they don’t know that most of the questions from European or American journalists were taken from African journalists they collaborate with.

This is the time for African leaders to hold summit in the interest of the continent and find solutions for its porous and weak economy, because the world’s banking system is on the verge of collapsing. It’s always starts from Greece. Despite the European and U.S. governments’ efforts to bail out Greece and prop up the stock market, the global banking system came tumbling down like the Berlin wall in 1989. Now it’s clear history wants to repeat itself.

Leader 1

The votes of African citizens bring politicians into power. They should therefore protect, improve the educational and health institutions for the benefit of the citizens, including children. If Africans, African-Americans or Africans in the Diaspora, continue to face abuse of human rights and injustices, then African leaders aren’t special. They are just a laughing stock in the eyes of European and American leaders.

http://www.amazon.com/AIDS-AND-EBOLA-Greatest-Medical-ebook/dp/B00QZCYMSS