NGO seeks reparation from Britain, America for slavery
Members of the Ghana Reparation and Repatriation Foundation (GRARF), a local NGO operating in the north, have appealed to the government to take a strong stand and ask for compensation from Britain and America for their involvement in the Trans Atlantic Chattel slavery in Ghana.
The members reminded government that the United Nations Human Rights Commission has classified the Trans Atlantic Chattel Slavery as crime against humanity and that must be pursued to its logical conclusion without any favour.
The members said the Commission’s declaration should be used as the basis to hold accountable the architects of the inhuman killing machinery that managed the Insurance Brokerages, the slave–schooner ships, the chains and shackles used for the export of the Trans Atlantic Slaves.
The appeal was contained in a petition to President John Evans Atta Mills and signed by 20 members of the NGO including the Gwollu Kouru, Kuri-Buktie Limann, Paramount Chief of the Gwollu Traditional Area, the Nandom-Naa, Puoure Puobe Chiir, Paramount Chief of the Nandom Traditional Area, and the Lambussie Kuoru, Iddrisu Bammie, Paramount Chief of the Lambussie Traditional Area.
At a news conference in Wa on Tuesday, the Gwollu Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann, reminded President Atta Mills of how some countries like Germany and Italy among others had paid reparations to the Jews and Libyans for crime against humanity and called for same for Ghana.
He expressed disappointment that PANAFEST and Emancipation Day celebration arrangements were limited only to the south without the involvement of people in the three northern regions where most of the slaves came from.
“We are sorry that the regions in the North where most of their brethren were raided, kidnapped, captured and fatefully marched down southern coastal exit points in chains and shackles had been left out,” Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann said.
The Gwollu Kuoru explained that emancipation stemmed from the recognition of the strong resistance and successful fights put up against enslavement by the slave raiders, slave masters and those ignoble chiefs and African colluders who captured, kidnapped and sold their brethren to chattel slave buyers for export.
“We therefore want to know whether people in the exit points in Cape Coast, Elmina, Axim, Osu Castle and Anomabo and other places in the coast fought slave raiders and slave masters and whether the slaves exported to Britain, Europe and America were from Cape Coast?” Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann asked.
Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann mentioned the Gwollu Slave Defence Wall relics, the Sankana Slavery Hiding Caves and Kansana Slave Market in the Upper West Region, the Paga Slave Watch Tower in the Upper East Region and the Salaga Slave Markets where their ancestors had to engage in wars with slave raiders and slave masters to emancipate themselves.
“It is on record that none of these chattel slavery exit points; especially Cape Coast and Elmina resisted slavery or fought against African enslavement. On the contrary, it is known they colluded with slave exporters and helped camp, quarantine and enforced obedience at the camps and castles,” Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann explained.
He said that explained why the white slave buyers and European historians asserted that Africans and their chiefs gleefully sold their kith and kin to them for export.
“We cannot understand why such dignitaries visiting Ghana should be restricted to such infamous “Gates of No Return” only, instead of taking them to the slavery resisted places that successfully fought against chattel enslavement,” Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann said.
“In our quest for reparations from the powers and beneficiaries of our ancestral brethren who were chattel slaved and exported to Britain, Europe and America, we advocate for a Marshall Plan to help promote rapid development of the north, which is considered the poorest region in the country.
“Your Excellency we would be most grateful if the above mentioned request and appeals are part of your agenda when meeting President Barack Obama,” Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann pleaded.
He called on all African descendants in Europe, America and Britain to come back to their ancestral home and help African to sustain herself from poverty, disease and illiteracy.
On the election of President Barack Obama as US President, Kuoru Kuri-Buktie Limann said that was a clear indication that America now lived up to the time meaning of its creed; that “All men are created equally and are endowed by their creator with inalienable rights, among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
“This means President Obama should be judged by the content of his character not the colour of his skin,” he said, adding: “Obama’s victory is not only meant for black people. It is a victory for conscience”.