The Pan African Writers Association (PAWA) has honored President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his contributions and support to the Association’s development.
It also honored Nigerian President Muhammed Buhari and Vice Professor Yemi Osinbajo for their support of the association.
The awards, recognizing Ghana’s support for PAWA since its inception 30 years ago, were accepted on behalf of President Akufo-Addo by the Chief Director of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. John Agbeko.
They were awarded at the 2022 General Assembly, according to a statement made by Mr. John Rusimbi, President, and Dr. Wale Okediran, Secretary General of the Association, and co-signed and copied to the Ghana News Agency.
The conference, held on June 24, 2022 under the theme “LITERATURE SINCE MAKERERE 1962: The Pan-African Agenda of African Writers for Peace, Security and Cultural Development”, was held in cooperation with the Nigerian Academy of Letters (NAL) and the Nigerian Academy of Letters (NAL) instead of Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), it said.
The statement added that national writers organizations from Liberia, Togo, Congo, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia, Zambia, Niger, Mozambique, Equatorial Guinea, Namibia, Malawi, Egypt, Sudan, Mauritania, Ivory Coast, Uganda, Gabon, Cameroon, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Chad, Benin, Guinea, Burundi and Mali.
Apologies had been received from national writers’ organizations in Somaliland, Djibouti, South Africa, Morocco, Burkina Faso, Botswana, Angola, Tunisia and Lesotho.
Other honorees at the event included Mr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, Ghana’s Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, three Nigerian Governors, the CEOs of the Ford Foundation and MTN Nigeria, and other dignitaries.
The association also presented literary giants, including the pioneering PAWA Secretary-General, Professor Atukwei Okai, with the Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award, with a posthumous award for Professor Femi Osofisan, Professor Dan Izevbaye, Mr. John Rusimbi, Professor Egara Kabaji, Professor Anate Koumealo, among others Dr. Lance Nawa.
Accepting the award on behalf of the President, Mr. Agbeko expressed the government’s delight at the track record of PAWA over the 30 years of its existence and added that the government would continue to support the association.
Meanwhile, in a communiqué issued at the end of the General Assembly, PAWA reaffirmed its commitment to the ideas and principles of the association, including defending freedom of expression for all Africans and the material and spiritual interests of African writers and their associations; Promoting literacy and eradicating illiteracy in Africa and promoting the inclusion of African literary works in the curriculum of educational institutions.
The rest is; Promotion of African languages and translation of African literature into African languages; promoting research into the recording and recovery of lost or undiscovered African heritage, whether on the continent, in the diaspora, or in museums and libraries around the world; promoting peace and understanding in Africa and the world through literature and incorporating literary activities for young writers into all activities of PAWA.
The association also called on the various African governments to urgently fulfill their financial obligations to PAWA so that the association can fully fulfill its mandate set by its founding fathers.
In accordance with PAWA’s charter, the General Assembly elected the following writers to its council to direct the affairs of the association for the next three years.
They are: Mr. John Rusimbi, President; dr Wale Okediran, Secretary General; Mr. Elfatih Hamadto, Vice-President (North Africa) and Ms. Imela Oyono Anyigono, Vice-President (Central Africa).
Others are: Prof. Koumealo Anate, Vice President (West Africa); Prof. Egara Kabaji, Vice-President (East Africa) and Ms. Monica Mpambawashie, Vice-President (Southern Africa).