DU Bois Centre woefully under resourced

The Acting Executive Director of the W.E.B Du Bois Centre of Pan African Culture, Mr Benyameen Sam Keelson, has called for assistance in the re-development of the centre to enhance its activities.

DU Bois Centre
DU Bois Centre

He said despite efforts being made by the Management to keep and maintain the activities of the Centre, there were myriad of challenges affecting their operations.

DU Bois Centre
DU Bois Centre

Mr Keelson said the Centre, which served as a national historic monument of Ghana, was woefully under resourced, while the support from donor agencies had completely ceased.

Additionally, he said, the weakened staff strength had largely affected their capacity to operate and deliver optimally.

Mr Keelson was addressing a two-day stakeholder workshop, in Accra, to help in the redevelopment of the centre, which he said was in dire need of restoration.

The centre was established in 1985, by PNDC Law 238 of 1990, as a research institute for Pan African History and Culture, African Diasporan Creativity and the promotion of the social, political, cultural, and intellectual legacy of Dr W.E.B Du Bois.

William Edward Burghardt DuBois, was an American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, and editor.

He was born on February 23, 1868, Great Barrington, Massachusetts, United States, but he died in Accra on August 27, 1963, where he had settled that same year at the invitation of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first president to write the Encyclopaedia Africana.

He said considering the enormous importance of the centre towards the advancement of the course of Pan Africanism, it was imperative to put in all efforts to ensure that it was renovated.
He, therefore, tasked the stakeholders, which included the government and non governmental institutions to join forces to make the initiative materialise for the total transformation of the Centre.

Professor Esi Sutherland Addy, an Associate Professor of the Institute of African Studies, said the inconsistency in policy and change of government, with other challenges, had affected the Centre from being developed and, therefore, appealed for help to save the situation.

Mrs Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare, the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, gave the assurance that the Governments would address the challenges, saying it was currently liaising with Helping Africa Foundation USA towards finding a final solution to the problem.

She said the Centre was the interface for telling the W.E.B Du Bois’ story to Ghana, Africa and world and that the Ministry was finding appropriate support to maintain tourism facilities such as the centre.

Mr Japhet Aryiku, the Executive Director for Helping Africa Foundation, said the meeting would promote the dynamics of the Centre to enable it to become the think tank that would assist in resolving issues, taboos and conflicts to improve Pan Africanism.

“This will honor and cherish the memory of lost Africans who came to Africa to liberate it and see it grow”.

Source: GNA
By Samira Larbie/Alimatu Quaye

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