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Christmas visitors to enjoy 46-day visa-on-arrival window in Ghana

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Visitors who choose to travel to Ghana during the Christmas season will find it easy to enter the West African country as the government has declared a 46-day visa-on-arrival regime between December 1, 2023 and January 15, 2024.

The decision of the Ghanaian government is part of the country’s ambitious 10-year “Beyond The Return” campaign which is designed to encourage Africans in the diaspora to explore and reconnect with Ghana.

A statement from the Ministry of Transport on Thursday stressed the importance of updating systems to reflect the new arrangement, urging those responsible for checking in passengers travelling to Ghana not to insist on entry visas before boarding.

“The move aligns with the broader goal of positioning Ghana as a premier destination for those of African descent,” Foreign Affairs Minister Ayorkor Botchwey said while unveiling the plan.

At a recent stakeholders meeting, Botchwey had hinted at Ghana’s “serious consideration of allowing all Africans and people of African descent in the diaspora to enter the country visa-free.”

Botchwey had also emphasized that the country would implement a visa-free entry for Africans
as it aligned with Ghana’s broader efforts to deepen connections with the diaspora and position itself as a welcoming and accessible hub.

“As the government explores this possibility, it reflects a strategic effort to boost tourism, enhance cultural exchange, and celebrate the shared heritage of people of African descent across the globe,” he had added.

The move also sees Ghana following in the footsteps of Rwanda, Seychelles, The Gambia, and Benin Republic, as the only African nations offering visa-free entry for all African citizens.

Culture

Director of ‘Dahomey’ Mati Diop shines at Berlin Film Festival 2024

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Senegalese-French writer and and director of African documentary movie, “Dahomey,” Mati Diop, made history when her movie was selected for a special world premiere at the 2024 Berlin Film Festival.

She was joined by other directors of African descent including Gildas Adannou, Habib Ahandessi and Joséa Guedje at the premiere where Kenyan Hollywood actress, Lupita Nyong’o became the ever black person to head the festival’s jury.

“Dahomey” which is one of Africa’s entry in this year’s festival, is a documentary that explores colonization through the return of stolen artifacts plundered by French colonial troops and returned to Benin in West Africa.

Dahomey” follows the journey of plundered artifacts taken by French colonial troops in 1892, being sent from Paris to the Republic of Benin and the impact of their return.

Other African films selected for the festival include “Black Tea” by Mauritanian-born Malian director Abderrahmane Sissako, and “Who Do I Belong To” by Tunisian-Canadian director Meryam Joobeur.

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Tanzanians protest against Nyerere statue

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Some Tanzanians have taken to social media to protest against a recently unveiled statue of their founding father, Julius Nyerere.

According to them, the statue “does not look like” him.

The African Union (AU) had unveiled the statue in honour of the revered Tanzania founding president outside the Union’s headquarters in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital.

At the unveiling of the statue at a ceremony attended by numerous African heads of state, AU Commission leader Moussa Faki Mahamat said:

“The legacy of this remarkable leader encapsulates the essence of Pan Africanism, profound wisdom, and service to Africa.”

However, some Tanzanians have criticized the statue which they believe does not look like the pan-Africanist who led what is now Tanzania which was then known as Tanganyika, from independence in 1961 until 1985, a played a key role in the formation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), which later became the African Union.

A user on X, Maria Sarungi, who expressed her disappointment at the statue wrote:

“I know the gesture counts the most, but this statue’s face bears little or no resemblance to Mwalimu Nyerere (old or young),” she wrote.

Another user who was not happy with the simply said:

“That is not our Nyerere.”

Known as Mwalimu, a Swahili word for teacher, Nyerere is remembered for uniting the country made up of more than 120 different ethnic groups, including Arab, Asian and European minorities.

He did this by promoting the use of Swahili as a common language and through his vision of Ujamaa (Familyhood) and his version of “African Socialism.”

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