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Today in History: African Day celebration

May 25, 2019, marks 56 years since Africa Day was conceived in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Here’s all you need to know and why you should celebrate this day.

How it all started

According to SA History.org, on 15 April 1958, a year after Ghana gained independence from Britain, the country, under the leadership of Nkwame Nkrumah, called for the first meeting of all independent African States.

Countries in attendance

During this period, only eight African countries had gained independence from colonialism, which meant only a few could attend. Those that did were Ghana, Morocco, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tunisia, Liberia, and Libya. Cameroon and Algeria, although not free at the time, sent representatives to the conference.

The goal of the conference

This period saw Africans being outspoken about wanting liberation and the acknowledgement of their human rights.

This was the first ever conference in which Africa’s leadership convened to plot a way forward, free of dominance by the Europeans, and it is when the celebration of Africa Day, formerly known as Africa Liberation Day (ALD), was conceived.

Africa Day gains ground

Between 1959 and 1963, Africa Day was openly celebrated by Africans on and away from the continent. On May 25, 1963, leaders from 32 African countries converged on Addis Ababa and formed the Organisation of African Unity. It was then agreed to move Africa Day from April 15 to May 25.

For further details on the Day click on the below link: