Interesting Facts About African Liberation Day: The Celebration Of Africa’s Independence

May 25th is African Liberation Day. On this day, many African countries celebrate the hard-fought achievement of their freedom from European colonial powers. African Liberation Day, also known as ALD, was founded in 1958 by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah on the occasion of the First Conference of Independent States held in Accra, Ghana and attended by eight independent African states.
The 15th of April was declared “Africa Freedom Day,” to mark each year the onward progress of the liberation movement, and to symbolize the determination of the people of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation.
African Liberation Day is celebrated by many African communities around the world. It is a permanent mass institution in the worldwide Pan African Movement. The day is observed in countries such as Ghana, Kenya, Spain, Tanzania, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Events include: formal gatherings with panel discussions, street marches, speeches by political and social leaders, special university lectures and rallies featuring cultural entertainment, poetry, and speakers.
Many organizations use an outline of the map of Africa, or the shape of Africa, as a feature to symbolize the day. Pan-African colors, which are widely used for the day, come in different sets of three colors: the green, gold, and red colors used in the flag of Ghana; and the red, black, and green colors adopted by the American-based Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA).
Africa Day continues to be celebrated both in Africa and around the world, mostly on 25 May (although in some cases these periods of celebrations can be stretched out over a period of days or weeks). Themes are set for each year’s Africa Day.
Read on to find out more interesting facts you probably didn’t know about African Liberation Day:
1. In the United States the day is commemorated in form of symposiums, where people are invited to attend and participate in political and social issues relevant to US African communities.
2. Although widely observed on a global scale by various African communities, African Liberation Day is not a federal holiday in many countries including Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States. May 25th is a public holiday in Ghana.
3. African Liberation Day has helped to raise political awareness in African communities across the world.  It has also been a source of information about the struggles for liberation and development.
4. Five years later, on 25 May 1963, representatives of thirty African nations met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, hosted by Emperor Haile Selassie. By then more than two-thirds of the continent had achieved independence, mostly from imperial European states.
At this meeting, the Organization of African Unity was founded, with the initial aim to encourage the decolonization of Angola, Mozambique, South Africa and Southern Rhodesia. The organization pledged to support the work conducted by freedom fighters, and remove military access to colonial nations.
A charter was set out which sought to improve the living standards across member states. Selassie exclaimed, “May this convention of union last 1,000 years. At this meeting, the date of Africa Freedom Day was changed from 15 April to 25 May, and African Freedom Day was declared African Liberation Day (ALD).
5. From 1959 to 1963 African Liberation Day was celebrated in Ethiopia, South Africa, Ghana and by African people in Britain, China, Soviet Union and the United States (US). Other conferences were held in January 1960 in Tunisia followed by another one in Egypt in March 1961.

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