On Saturday June 30 2012, a colorful national Ghana cultural festival was held in Stuttgart, the capital of the German State Baden Wurttemberg by UGAG – Union of all Ghanaian Associations in Germany. The theme of the festival, which was also dedicated to the Ghanaian Youth in Germany, was “integration through intercultural dialogue”. The festival was attended by the representative of the Ghana Embassy in Berlin, Mr. Quaye, Presidents of all Ghana Unions in Germany, Chiefs and Queens from Stuttgart. Togbe Cephas Bansah, the Ngoyifia of Hohoe and Nana Brewuo, Tudwonu of Manhyia-Kumasi as wells as Ghanaians in and around Stuttgart, Germany crowned the occasion. The festival was also attended by the Patron of the African Union Stuttgart, Africans and German nationals as well as Indians in and around Stuttgart.
The President of Ghana Union, Stuttgart Mr. Alexander Okai Anane in his speech stressed the importance and benefits of education, integration and the need for unity amongst Ghanaian living in Germany. Mr. Anane used the occasion to appeal to all Ghanaian institutions, tribal unions and churches to support the educational, social and integration projects of the Ghana Unions in Germany. We must unit and co-operate with one another in order to achieve the maximum benefits of our endeavors here in Germany and back in Ghana, he added.
Mr. Rex Osei Fley and Mr. Samuel Sasu who are the mentors and leaders of the Ghana Youth Association in Stuttgart introduced and presented the visions of the newly formed Youth Association in Stuttgart and outlined some of the benefits and motivating factors of the Association. They also appealed to the parents to allow and encourage their children to join the Ghana Youth Association.
Mr. Daniel Dake, the President of UGAG, in his speech, thanked the Ghana Union Stuttgart for the planning and sponsoring of the Ghana Festival. Mr Dake also stressed the need for Unity among the various Ghana Unions. He encouraged the Ghanaians in Germany to rally behind UGAG in its effort to petition the Ghana Government to enter into a bi-lateral agreement with the Republic of Germany on the Old Age Pension Scheme.
At moment Ghanaians living and working in Germany will receive less than 70% of their old pension, if they choose to relocate to Ghana or any other non-EU member country. The bi-lateral agreement on the old age pension scheme is aimed at enabling Ghanaians who have worked in Germany get 100% of their pension at the time they choose to become permanent residents of Ghana.
Mr. Dake also pointed out the need for Ghanaians in Germany with German Passports be issued identity cards which will enable them to travel to Ghana without visas. He said countries like Ethiopia, India and Mexico issue special identity cards to their diaspora natives. India issues a Person of Indian Origin card that allows for entry without a visa during the period of its validity India ID-cards, Ethiopia issues a yellow card Mexico issues matrícula consular to Mexicans for identification. A petition will also be sent to the Government of Ghana on this issue by UGAG.
Among the highlights were the performances of “Adowa” dance by the Adowa Cultural Troupe in Stuttgart and the Mannheim-Ludwigshafen Youth Cultural Group supported by the Edikamfo Cultural Group from Berlin, whilst the Ewe Dukor Cultural Group from Frankfurt dynamited the festival with Bobo and Agbaza dance.
Since apart from language, food forms a major pivot of every culture, one could smell the sweet fragrance of the varieties of delicious Ghanaian dishes that were served at the festival.
The festival, which ended at about 22:00 CET was attended by circa 500 people.
Source: Modern Ghana