The Diaspora African Forum has petitioned the United States of America (USA) government to arrest and prosecute all four police officers who were caught on video manhandling George Floyd at Minneapolis, USA, resulting in his death.
The Forum further called on the USA government to seek a drastic change in systemic policies which oppresses and suppresses African-Americans and violates their human rights.
The petition, signed by members of the Diaspora community in Ghana, some Ghanaians and civil rights activists and presented to the USA Ambassador to Ghana, Stephanie Sanders Sullivan, in Accra yesterday further urged the American government to put in place measures that protect the lives of African-Americans and other minorities or risk losing its global status as a model of democracy and freedom.
In brief remarks ahead of the presentation, Rabbi Kohain H. Halevi, Convener, Universal Pan African Diaspora Coalition of Ghana, said it was time to end growing killings of African-Americans by police officers and white supremacists.
He said, for far too long, the USA government and laws have failed to protect them from hateful executions and other racially-motivated actions stating that “we have brought ourselves to a new level of consciousness and responsibility to end this terror.”
According to him, African-Americans have been convicted guilty because of their clout and origin, resulting in senseless executions and cycle of pain on families and the larger society.
Although the Forum was against any form of violence, Rabbi Halevi explained that years of suppression, pain and lack of equality accounted for the anger and violence that has characterised the ongoing protests across the USA.
“After 400 years of slavery, we will not remain silent for this to continue. We want a different ending to this script. Africans demand a new deal from the world after years of oppression. We will continue to honour our fallen heroes and solidarise with our brothers in the USA,” he noted.
Ambassador Erieka Bennet, Head of Mission, Africa Diaspora Forum, stated that Africans have for years faced terror and oppression as well as constant human rights abuses owing to their skin colour and not illegalities as it was mostly misreported.
He said African-Americans would demand for justice now and commit to fighting inequality.
The Chief Executive Officer of Diaspora Network Television, Jermaine Nkrumah advised Africans to change the narrative of Africans by first respecting the African race and create opportunities that would spur other Africans to flourish economically and socially.
“First of all, we all have a role to play in changing the narrative about Africans. And this involves showing respect to the black race and just as we have done to other races. The new mantra going forward is respect,” he added.
Mr Akwasi Agyeman, Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Tourism Authority reiterated calls on Africans to demand for justice and promote solidarity toward ending inequity.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS