HIGH COMMISSIONER VICTOR SMITH SWEARS IN THE NATIONAL COUNCIL EXECUTIVES IN THE UK
The Ghana High Commissioner to the UK/Ireland, His Excellency Victor Emmanuel Smith, on Saturday 24th October, swore in the Executive members of the National Council for Ghanaian Unions, UK (NCGU) at a ceremony held in Birmingham and hosted by the Ghana Union in the Midlands. He was accompanied by the Head of Consular Affairs, Mr George Abaka Blankson and Deputy Head of Welfare, Mr Jedu Yeboah. Also in attendance were Hon. Justice Joe Appiah, MP for Ablekuma North Constituency and Mr Slech Letei Lartey, Assistant in charge Roads and Development at the Ledjorkuku Krowor Municipal Assembly as well as senior officials from the participating regional Unions.
His Excellency Victor Smith in delivering the inaugural address extended greetings from The President of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama and expressed his personal joy at being associated with such a “historic, memorable and obviously significant day of the inauguration of the Council of Ghanaian Unions in the United Kingdom”
He took the opportunity to commend his predecessors and all the founding members of the National Council for their sacrificial and unrelenting efforts, which culminated in a day he had looked forward to from the first day he assumed office. Finally, His Excellency called attention to developmental progress made by the current administration while expressing confidence that some of the challenges facing the nation, such as the energy crisis will be resolved by the end of next year.
Dr Quaye Botchway, Chair of the NCGU expressed his appreciation to the Ghana Union Midlands (GUM) for hosting the inauguration and used the occasion to call on all Ghanaians to join their local Ghana Union to reinforce the capacity of the National Council to advocate for better conditions for Ghanaians resident in UK. Dr Quaye Botchway stated that; “Today marks the beginning of a new era in the development of a national umbrella body that will provide a unified voice for all Ghana Union groupings in the United Kingdom. I will encourage everyone here to be part of a Ghana Union in your various local areas and take it to the next level in the formation of regional unions. It is through these regional unions that your voice will be amplified at the national level by the National Council of Ghanaian Unions (NCGU), UK”.
He went on to thank the directors for the confidence vested in him through his election as the first Chairman of the National Council. Leaders from the regional Unions in their submissions called for focus on the aims of the Council through collective efforts to achieve real and sustained improvement in the standard of living of Ghanaians.
The idea of establishing the NCGU was launched nearly three years ago at a meeting of community leaders in London, with the aim to improve collaboration among the regions to participate in the global move towards a more structured approach to organising Ghanaians in the Diaspora. It will be run by an elected Executive body accountable to the Directors and ultimately the people. Its activities will leverage with the assistance of additional short-term experts hired for specific tasks. The NCGU is a founding organisation of the FEDERATION OF GHANAIAN DIASPORA IN EUROPE, (FEGHADE).
You may call the Secretariat on 07510 258 785.
27TH OCTOBER 2015
2. Mental Health & Well-Being Conference-Mental Health Foundation of Ghana
3. Unibank’s Ghanaian Diaspora Business Summit 2013
In seeking to promote diaspora investment opportunities in Ghana to increase economic growth, job creation and indigenous business development, the DSU has realised the need for more effort in attracting the direct contribution and investment from the diaspora, into the overall development agenda of Ghana.
The DSU through the Ghanaian Diaspora Business Summit sought to create a platform of engagement through which returned diaspora entrepreneurs would meet to share and exchange ideas on how best to grow their businesses.
The Event aimed at:
- Creating networking opportunities for Diaspora Returnees and local Entrepreneurs
- Challenging the business community to develop innovative products and services for the diaspora community.
- Exposing the diaspora community to existing entrepreneurial support schemes for returning Ghanaians.
- Creating awareness of the existence of the Diaspora Support Unit (DSU) and its services to the diaspora community as primary clients.
- Publicising returnee projects and diaspora-related activities
Date: Friday 6th September, 2013
Venue: Accra International Conference Centre (AICC)
Time: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Organizers & Partners
Diaspora Support Unit (DSU)-Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration
Ghana Investment Promotion Council (GIPC)
Ghana Chamber of Commerce & Industry
International Organisation for Migration (IOM-Ghana)
3. AU 50th Anniversary Celebrations and Renaissance Dinner- 27th of July- August 3rd, 2013.
NATIONAL HOLIDAYS IN GHANA
National Holidays in Ghana are usually linked to an event celebration, whether it is traditional or non-traditional.
Official National holidays
- January 1: New Year’s Day
- March 6: Independence Day
- May 1: Labour Day
- May 25 : African Union Day
- July 1: Republic Day
- December 25: Christmas Day
- December 26: Boxing Day
Ghana Calendar of Festivals
Bugum Festival – celebrated by the people of Dagomba, begins with torch processions, festive drumming and dancing. This popular gathering has its origins in Islam.
Edina Buronya - This is an indigenous version of Christmas celebrated on the first Thursday of the New Year by the people of Elmina (Edina). After a fish-catsching ritual, families invite friends to dine and make merry, drumming and dancing. This festival was established during the time of the Dutch colonialists.
Dzawuwu Festival – takes place every year in February by the people of the Agave in the Volta Region who celeberate this thanksgiving festival. The main festivities include offerings to the gods, traditional dancing and a colorful durbar of chiefs .
The Pan African Historical Theatre Project presently known as PANAFEST is a cultural event held in Ghana every other year for Africans and people of African descent. It was first held in 1992. The idea of this festival is to promote and enhance unity, Pan-Africanism, and the development of the continent of Africa itself. The late Efua Sutherland in the mid 1980s, described it as a cultural vehicle for bringing Africans on the continent and in the Diaspora together around the issues raised by slavery. Along side the healing processes, PANAFEST celebrates the strengths and resilience of the African culture and achievements of Africans in spite of the transatlantic slave trade and its aftermath. It is designed to help Africans to reconnect with their roots and rededicate themselves to the development of Africa.
Gologo Festival – a three-day event, celeberated by the Talensi people of Upper East. Tong-Zug are held to ensure there is a lot of rain and, therefore, a good harvest.
Bobum / Dipo is celebrated by the people of Manya and Yilo Krobo in the towns of Krobo Odumase and Somanya, in the Easter Region. The mode of celebration is adolescent girls who are adorned in beautiful beads and half-clothed. The festival initiates the adolescent girls into womanhood. Dipo rites have been practiced since the eleventh century.
Aboakyir Festival – This festival is a deer hunt and remains popular with local Winneba people. Two traditional warrior groups compete to catch a live antelope as a test of bravery and strength.
Ohum Festival – is celebrated twice a year in June/July and September/October by the chiefs and people of the Akyem Traditional Area. It marks the anniversary of the Akyem Nation and worships the ancestral stools and the spirits of those who occupied them. The celebration also marks the first yam harvest of the year and asks for blessings for the upcoming year.
Nkyidwo (Monday Night) – The people of Essumeja in the Ashanti Region annually celebrate their birth or how their ancestors emerged one Monday night from a hole in the ground and are followed by a dog and lion amid drumming, dancing and other activities.
Bakatue - held in Elmina in the Central Region at the start of the fishing season and is celebrated with a procession of chiefs and regatta
Homowo (hooting at hunger) - a harvest celebration held in the area around Accra with offerings of festive food to the gods and ancestors of the local people. It is characterised by such rituals as the sprinkling of the festival dish “Kpokpoi”. Preceding the festival is a month-long ban on noise making.
Yam Festival - an event that has long been popular among Ghanaians from different parts of the country. Yams are offered to ancestors and gods before being distributed among the villagers.
Damba - a traditional two-day long festival held in the Northern Region, offering much in the way of pomp and pageantry. There are also displays of horse riding.
Fetu Afahye – this festival is celebrated by people from the Central Region and the celebration includes a procession, drumming and dancing in remembrance of the first encounter Ghanaians had with their colonial visitors.
Apoo- The people of Techiman and Wenchi in the Brong Ahafo Region celebrate this festival. Activities for this festival involve the purification of the people in the two traditional areas to protect them from social evils. Its significance is to gain favour from their royal ancestors to ensure a better harvest at the end of the year.
Gmayem Manya – is a festival celebrated by the Krobos (Odumase), of the Eastern Region of Ghana.
Hogbetsotso - This colorful fiesta is held in Anloga, in the Volta Region of Ghana. Celebrations start on the first Saturday of November each year and last for a week. As well as a durbar, dancing and drumming plays a large part of the event
Fiok – is one of the Ghanaian Festivals that shows the war culture of the Busa people in the Western Region of Ghana. Their exploits are re-enacted during the festival and there is drumming and dancing, a durbar and thanksgiving to all the gods. Usually this festival is held in December.