The Nania-Paga community in the Kasena Nankana West District hosted this year’s Emancipation Day events at the historic grounds of the Pikworo Slave Camp in the Upper East Region. A mini durbar of chiefs and the elders of the community took place in memory of where the slave trade began.
Emancipation Day is celebrated around the world to commemorate the liberation of black people from slavery. It was on August 1st, 1834 that slavery was abolished in the British Empire. The Pikworo Camp in Nania was pivotal in the barbaric and inhuman treatment because it served as the holding point where captured slaves were kept and later transferred by walking about 150 kilometers to the Salaga slave market and sold.
The solemn ceremony in the Upper East Region brought together friends from the diaspora, students and community elders. It was under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism Arts and culture in collaboration with the PANAFEST secretariat and local Planning Committee.
Prayers were said and libations were poured to remember those who suffered and died. There was some solemn moment amidst tears and reflection from participants when schoolchildren staged a performance that expressed the emotions surrounding the innocent killings of their forefathers as a result of the slave trade.
“I feel the pain inside me and I feel sad for my forefathers who were sent there.” One pupil said
“Looking at how our grandfathers and forefathers were treated it pains me a lot and I wish I was there to save them from such inhuman treatment.” Another pupil prayed.”
The Upper East Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr. Wisdom Ahadzi was happy that his region was hosting this year’s event. He called on the people to deepen their resolve to fight against any form of oppression and injustice persisting in their communities.
The Upper East Regional Minister, Mr. Stephen Yakubu said the event is not just for entertainment but also serves as a platform to connect families. He asked the general public to remember the sacrifices made by their forefathers, who suffered during the error of slavery, by working for brighter future for the next generation.
The event was celebrated on the theme; reclaiming the African family, confronting the past to face the challenges of the 21st century.