A historic meeting of two pan-Africanists took place on January 31, 2023 in Accra, Ghana, when Her Excellency. Monique Ekpong, the Nigerian ambassador to Angola, paid a courtesy call on the legendary poet writer and author, Ama Ata Aidoo, who she described as one of her favorite authors.
The meeting of a well-known Ghanaian female author—a poet, playwright, novelist, short story writer—and a significant literary critic is best described as “Major” because of the benefits that Her Excellency Monique Ekpong derived from her works when she conducted research for both her Master’s and Doctorate degrees on her artistic output.
Her Excellency had devoted a significant portion of her life—more than 30 years—to studying the writings of the Ghanaian novelist. She compared the author to Nkrumah, as a pan-Africanist whose writings had a good influence on the world.
When Her Excellency gave the author the two books that were the result of her research, the encounter reached its zenith. Ama Ata Aidoo was read a passage from the foreword of “Womanhood Redefined” that stated the author Aidoo would be among many who would be happy to read Her Excellency’s book as a reward for her sweat and hard labour. “Readers and researchers are the ones who make our work come alive,” exclaimed a thrilled Ama Ata Aidoo. She was also honored to be acknowledged as a pan-Africanist alongside Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana’s first President.
The Ambassador also shared her achievements with the author at the Nigerian Embassy in Angola, where she was credited for facilitating economic and trade ties between the two countries, with direct flight from Nigeria to Angola with National Airline TAAG.
Her Excellency Monique Ekpong,and Ama Ata Aido had conversations about her writings and remembered their literary contemporaries, the majority of whom the Ambassador had met at ALA Conferences held around the globe. The amount of work Her Excellency had completed and, more importantly, how knowledgeable she was about almost all of its components, left Aidoo in awe at one point.
Ama Ata Aidoo gave Her Excellency a shawl made in Ghana as a token of appreciation for her commitment to studying her work over the years.
During the encounter, there was an enigmatic delight in the air. Everyone in attendance was engulfed in the euphoria. Both the Ghanaian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Nigerian High Commission in Ghana dispatched representatives. Amb. Rossette Aliu, publisher of The African Regional Journal and the West African Regional Magazine, was also present.
Kinna, Ama Ata Aidoo’s daughter, was also present. She prepared numerous huge cakes in various flavours for the celebration. Josephine, Aidoo’s secretary of more than eleven years, was also present . Former Ghanaian Ambassador, Kojo Ackon was also present , and he subsequently brought his wife and daughter to see the Ambassador. Her Excellency Monique Ekpony was accompanied by her son Abuo Ekpong,