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Africa Day

Africa Day Festival at St. Paul's Lutheran School in Accra

Accra, Ghana - A celebration of African Union Day took place the day before Africa Day, May 25, at St. Paul's Lutheran School in Accra with the theme "The Role of Youth in Building a Peaceful Africa." More than 200 students and some of their teachers were in attendance, joyously attired in local dress.

The Headmistress of the School, Mrs. Jemima Yarquah, gave welcoming remarks. UPF-Ghana Secretary General Dr. Helen Osei addressed the pupils on ‘attitude’ as a key to achieving one's goals. Although hard work, knowledge, and luck are good ingredients, they aren't sufficient for fulfilling 100 percent of one's life goals. "It is our attitude toward life and work that makes our life complete," she said.

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Special guest Rev. Bismarck Bamfo, Executive Director of the American Clergy Leadership Conference in Boston – USA, challenged the Ghanaian youth to become ambassadors of peace in their country and Africa at large. Addressing the topic of "The Role of Youth in Building a Peaceful Africa," he advised them to cultivate the habit of showing respect and love to one another. Then "the unification we all need in Africa can be achieved."

The UN Information Officer, Mrs. Cynthia Prah, introduced the activities of the United Nations and announced to the students that African Union Day is very important in the lives of all Africans. Its celebration calls for a sober reflection on the past achievements on the continent, she said, and explained that a bright future could be guaranteed only when the successes and failures of the past were acknowledged.

She therefore urged the pupils to be proud of their culture and themselves as Africans, and to not be easily convinced that they have to throw off their cultural identity for others. "Your culture identifies you. Be proud of it and respect it. This will make others respect and accept you for who you are," she said. Mrs. Prah then read the African Union Day message of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and at the end presented an award to the best African-dressed student, Ms. Kokua Jonah.

Two children from The Splendors of Dawn Poetry Foundation gave a soul-stirring rendition of the poem "The Voice of Africa Calling for the End of the Scourge of War." [For the text of the poem, click here.]

The event ended in an exciting atmosphere. More than 15 media organizations - television, radio, and print - covered the program. The news was all over the air for several days.

Read reports of the event by the UN Information Centre in Accra,, peacefrmonline, myjoyonline,

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