Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Rita Marley Bestowed With Honorary Ghanaian Citizenship

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Rita Marley, the widow of music and one love legend Bob Marley, received honorary citizenship status in Ghana on their Emancipation Day. She was granted the distinction of being honorary citizen based on her philanthropic efforts and social contributions throughout Africa but particularly in the country where she has lived for the past twenty years.

The acknowledgement was publicly recognized during Panafest where a biennial cultural celebration honors ancestors and also lauds the contribution of worthy individuals. Considered an icon of the Diaspora, Marley was also presented a Ghanaian passport.

“Congratulations to our beloved Nana Rita Marley!” Ambassador Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration said.

In addition to celebration of the Pan-African History Festival (PANAFEST), the occasion marked the golden jubilee of the Organization of African Union (OAU/AU).
“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.”

The singer and entrepreneur moved to the continent in 1993. Soon after taking up residency she was given the name Nana Afua Adobeya1 by a village chief.

There she established friendly relations with the local elders and chiefs by helping to improve roads, a water supply and electricity. She developed a school and a health care center.

She also built a recording studio in the capital city of Accra.

“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,” Dr. Erieka Bennett, head of mission, AU Diaspora Africa Forum said. Source

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