Africa Day 2017 is the occasion in which people from Britain, Africa and all over the world come together to celebrate an entire continent. The event is in London on Saturday 20 May.
There is a small sub-Saharan country of no more than two million people, without access to the sea and whose territory is covered in 70% desert. Independent for little more than half a century – it gained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1966 – at that time it had a GDP per capita of only 70 dollars.
The country is Botswana, a nation that while still having to overcome high unemployment rates and disparity between the richest and poorest represents an example within the African continent.
Yet with a long respect for the rule of law, free education, moderate corruption, a multiparty system and a stable economy that is growing rapidly, Botswana is usually seen as an example for other African nations.
But the vast and diverse continent has many more reasons to be the subject of study, admiration and imitation. The family culture that is prevalent across the continent, the religiosity of its inhabitants, the music and gastronomy that never cease to amaze the world and its natural wonders are just some examples that draw millions of tourists every year.
It is precisely these attributes that will give life to Africa Day 2017, an event organised by the Universal Peace Federation UK. Unlike previous years, when the event was held in New York and attended by the former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, this time the celebration will take place in London.
Among those that have confirmed their participation are Dr Yehoeshahfaht Ben Israel, Henri Pierre Koubaka (TBC), Tony Tokunbo Fernandez, the founder of Mothers of the Congo Charlotte Simon, Ibrahim K. Asante from the Significant International Group (SIG) and the writer, director and Pan-Africanist Simba Chioto.
As befits a celebration of this kind, there will be several activities offering opportunities to taste African dishes, listen to music from the continent, hear traditional stories and discover typical clothing from different African countries.
Date: Saturday 20 May 2017, 1:30pm. Location: 43 Lancaster Gate, London W2 3NA. More information here.
Photos: Pixabay – (Translated by Sydney Sims)