The easing of restrictions placed on the tourism and hospitality industry by the Ghanaian government has been applauded by Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA). The restrictions were part of measures to check the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr. Kwame Gyasi, the Central Regional Director of the GTA, said the intervention was key to reviving the tourism and hospitality industry to enable it to create employment, generate revenue, and sustain economic growth.
Mr. Gyasi was speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on the sidelines of a tree planting exercise as part of activities to commemorate this year’s Emancipation Day celebration in Cape Coast on Tuesday.
Emancipation Day Celebration is an international event observed on August 1, every year to celebrate the resistance and liberation of Africans in the Diaspora against enslavement and human rights violation.
The national celebration will be on the theme: “Our Heritage, Our Strength, with a sub-theme: ‘Leveraging Our Resilience; Black Lives Matter.”
According to Mr. Gyasi, the remembrance will focus on rekindling the flame of unity among black people everywhere and highlighting the interconnected nature of their struggles on the African continent and in Europe and the Americas.
The tree planting exercise organized by the GTA in collaboration with the National Sports Authority (NSA) started at 0800 hours and about 120 Royal Palm trees were planted around the new Cape Coast Sports Stadium.
“One good thing about royal palms is that they are self-cleaning, meaning the old fronds naturally drop from the tree without the need for pruning. ”
Mr. Gyasi pledged to work closely with the NSA and other stakeholders to ensure the Royal Palm trees were watered to survive as a sign of hope and aspiration for all.
On the emancipation Day, the Regional Director of the GTA, said the event was designed to help Africans to reconnect and rededicate themselves to the lessons of history.
He said, “Emancipation Day should remind us once again that, the African family has been separated and that the different factions of the family both on the mother continent and in the Diaspora have suffered from this brutal and traumatic separation.”
Activities lined for the Emancipation Day celebrations started on Monday, July 27 in Accra with wreath-laying, virtual panel discussions will be held on Tuesday, July 28, and national tree planting exercise on Thursday, July 30.
The Reverential night will come off on Thursday, July 30 in Cape Coast and the Emancipation Day celebration and healing prayers at Assin Manso on Saturday, August 1.
The Emancipation Day Celebration, which originated in the Caribbean, has been celebrated since 1834 when chattel slavery was finally abolished in the Caribbean.
The event has been on Ghana’s tourism calendar since1998, making the country the first in Africa to re-affirm its status as the gateway to the homeland of Africans in the Diaspora through its “door of return.”