Ghana’s president: Europe should compensate Africa for slave trade

Ghana’s president: Europe should compensate Africa for slave trade

Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has urged European nations to pay reparations to Africa for damage wrought by the historic slave trade.

Speaking at the recent Reparations and Racial Healing Summit in Accra, Ghana’s leader said compensation for the trauma of the trans-Atlantic slave trade is long overdue and compared Africa’s lack of reparations to the enormous sums paid to slaveholders at the end of the trade. “The effects of the Slave trade have been devastating to the African continent and to the African diaspora, with the entire period of slavery stifling Africa’s economic, cultural and psychological progress,” Akufo-Addodo said.

Calls for reparations for damage wrought by the slave trade have been growing in recent years, and have been given impetus by the global Black Lives Matter movement for racial justice. Proponents argue that slavery wrought a devastating economic legacy that stymied the development of former slave colonies and the countries from which slaves were forcibly removed.

Akufo-Addo argued that Africans should be compensated in a similar way to the victims of other historic atrocities. To that end, he compared the lack of reparations paid to Africa to the enormous compensation paid to British, French and American slaveholders when the trade was finally outlawed in those countries. Modern-day Ghana was a major exit point for millions of slaves forced to endure the brutal Middle Passage to the United States, West Indies and South America.

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