In August of 2013, on Ghana’s Emancipation Day, the country will recognize an icon of the Diaspora, Nana Rita Marley, widow of the late superstar, Bob Marley. This historic event will take place at the nation’s annual Golden Jubilee celebration of OAU/AU and the Pan-African History Festival (PANAFEST), wherein Sister Rita (Nana Afua Adobeya1) will be granted honorary citizenship of Ghana along with a Ghanaian passport.
In the words of H.E. Dr. Erieka Bennett/ Head of Mission, AU Diaspora Africa Forum, “We are thrilled to see the Ghana government recognizing the tremendous contribution Nana Rita has made to Ghana socially as well as economically. This is a historical day for those of us from the diaspora. Congratulations to our beloved Nana Rita Marley!” Adds H.E. Ambassador Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, “Indeed Mrs. Rita Marley continues to leverage her unique name recognition to showcase Ghana and talk up Ghana’s pan-Africanist role and tourism potential at every opportunity.”
50 years after Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech and the passing of Dr. W.B. DuBois, and more than 32 years after the passing of her husband, the Honorable Robert Nesta Marley, Mrs. Marley has now accomplished the main part of their dream: returning to Africa not as slaves, but to give back to the less privileged.