Humanitas Afrika has launched a creative initiative to promote positive Africa in the Czech Republic. Around Africa in a Month is a current affairs programme and a platform of constructive dialogue held on the last Friday of every month to discuss serious issues that touch on the development of the African continent and showcase the various contributions that the African Diaspora communities are making to the development of Africa and Europe. Call it a kind of talk show if you like or, better still, infotainment, for it is a programme of information, education, constructive dialogue, discussion and entertainment.
According to its organisers, Humanitas Afrika, there were four reasons for the initiation of Around Africa in a Month. One was to build up awareness and promote understanding, respect and tolerance as well as to encourage and enhance good relations between the Czech Republic and Africa.
Secondly, the event is to support the UN’s International Decade for People of African Descent, 2015-2024. One of the objectives of the Decade is to promote respect and tolerance for people of African descent who continue to suffer racism and hatred across the world.
A third motivation for starting Around Africa in a Month was the formation of the African-Europe Diaspora Development Platform (ADEPT), which is permanently headquartered in Brussels. The European Union, in recognising the potential of African Diaspora organisations as partners for growth and development, has assisted enormously in founding ADEPT.
Fourthly, the ongoing issue of migrants and refugees desperately trying to enter Europe and the different responses this has attracted. Media reporting of the issue portrays Africans as refugees with nothing good to offer or contribute to the development of Africa and Europe. But Humanitas Afrika believes migration is a historical and global phenomenon that is not limited to Africa or, for that matter, any continent.
Around Africa in a Month was launched in Prague with a colourful ceremony recently by Her Excellency Souriya Otmani, the ambassador of Morocco who is also the head of the African Group of Ambassadors in the Czech Republic. She delivered an address on the migration debate and her country’s experience.
Other distinguished speakers at the occasion were Dr Jacques-Celestin Moliba and Dr Tereza Nemeckova of the Prague Metropolitan University who has written a positive book entitled The Changing Face of Africa. Also present were Albertine Kabambi, the Chargé d’Affaires of the embassy of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Pascal Ibe, the Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Federal Republic of Nigeria and the director of the British Council in Prague, Justin Spence. Papis Nyass from The Gambia entertained with African drums, and Ethiopian coffee and Moroccan tea ceremonies provided some of the other beautiful side attractions.