Local Pan-Africanists are calling for Government to strengthen ties with the African continent through the creation of a direct flight.
Public relations officer of the Pan African Coalition of Organizations, John Tifase Howell, was speaking this morning at a press launch for the celebration of Kwanzaa when he revealed that members of the Pan African Coalition believe that economic and social ties need to be fostered between the Caribbean and Africa.
“Africa is the richest continent in the world, you cannot have a major economic system unless you deal with the continent of Africa because the resources are there . . . We in the Caribbean are neglecting our legacy that we have with the continent of Africa and therefore we need to have this direct flight so we do trade and have cultural exchanges,” suggested Howell.
He said celebrations such as Kwanzaa, which commences on December 26, could only be continued if citizens, especially the youth, explore their African roots and heritage.
“It is the youth who have to continue the programme. It is about building communities and ultimately building the nation,” Howell said.
The Kwanzaa celebrations will kick off with cultural activities at Pelican Village.
Members from the Israel Lovell Foundation Pan African Coalition of Organizations, Caribbean Movement of Peace and Integration and the Haynesville Community Group are spearheading the programme.
The week will conclude on January 1 with a parade dedicated to the Haitian Independence and the 1959 Cuban Revolution in Haynesville St James.
David Denny, general secretary for the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration explained that the virtues of Kwanzaa were unity, creativity, faith and philanthropy. He pointed that the festival sought to encourage people to learn about themselves.
“It is a festival to help our entire family to better understand themselves, to look at the seven principles of Kwanzaa and to reflect on what they would happened during the year so it would help them to move forward in a more positive way,” Denny commented.