JM | Mar 1, 2023

CARICOM Reparations Commission and UWI welcome Royal African Delegation

/ Our Today

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Visiting African Royals signing a commemorative ledger on their arrival at the University of the West Indies (UWI) regional headquarters in Mona on February 28, 2023. (Photo: CARICOM)

A high-level delegation of royal African traditional leaders from AIDO Network International, arrived on the island yesterday (February 28) for a series of activities hosted by the CARICOM Reparations Commission in collaboration with The University of the West Indies (UWI), its Centre for Reparation Research and the PJ Patterson Institute for Africa-Caribbean Advocacy.

The delegation of African traditional leaders is on a seven-day visit and is set to participate in an all-day symposium titled “Reparations and Royalty, Africa and Europe: Exploding Myths and Empowering Truths,” on March 2 at The UWI Regional Headquarters from 9:00 am.

Eight Royal African traditional leaders from Uganda, Cameroon, Ghana and South Africa will also participate in a youth forum for tertiary students titled “Wha Gwaan Africa?!” on Friday, March 3 at The UWI Mona Campus Undercroft starting at 3:00 pm.

(Photo: CARICOM)

The delegation will also reconnect with the Maroons in Accompong, among other cultural and ceremonial activities.

The delegation’s visit and the reparations events follow a commitment made during the First Africa-CARICOM Summit of Heads of Government in September 2021 to pursue a programme of action to deepen collaboration between the two regions.

Significantly, it is also among activities in recognition of the 10th anniversary of the CARICOM Reparations Commission, the 75th anniversary of The UWI, as well as the observance of the International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024).

Among the objectives for the initiative include strengthening cooperation and promoting understanding between Africa and its Caribbean diaspora; engaging and inspiring youth in Jamaica and the region on issues related to their culture and identity; and contributing to building an Africa-CARICOM alliance in support of the reparations agenda.

Both events will provide opportunities to hear from descendants of African elites about pre-colonial societies and the changes brought by trading in Africans; discuss the roles of African and European royal families and other elites in the trans-Atlantic trade in enslaved Africans and the chattelisation of Africans; as well as clarify some core issues that reside at the centre of the global reparations movement.

Overall, the entities recognise the events as an invaluable opportunity for reconnection and dialogue between African Traditional and Cultural Leaders and Caribbean people on the myths that surround the European trade in enslaved Africans.

Both the symposium and the youth forum will be streamed live via UWItv, the university’s public information platforms on FLOW EVO and Facebook, as well as on the CARICOM Secretariat’s Facebook page.


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