By Ebi Kesiena
Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo is rallying African leaders to form a united front in the quest for reparations for the historical injustices of transatlantic slavery and colonial-era damages.
Some Western leaders have recently moved to acknowledge the wrongs of the colonial era in Africa and museums have begun returning stolen African treasures and artefacts.
Addressing a reparations conference in Accra, President Akufo-Addo emphasized that while no sum of money could fully rectify the transatlantic slave trade’s impact, it is an issue the world can no longer ignore.
He called for formal apologies from European nations involved in the slave trade and urged African collaboration with the Caribbean to push forward the legitimate demand for justice.
Also, describing slavery and colonialism as “Africa’s dark phase”, President of the Comoros and African Union Chairperson Azali Assoumani said the impact still “wreaks havoc in our population”.
The global debate on reparations unfolds against a backdrop of tangible progress in the return of stolen treasures and artifacts. Nigeria is in the process of repatriating centuries-old items looted from the ancient Kingdom of Benin, while neighboring Benin recently showcased artworks and treasures returned by France after extensive negotiations.