Press Release: 5th Pan-African Congress in Munich in 2015
Reclaiming African and African Diasporic Voices!
The fifth Pan-African Congress in Munich in 2015 will take place on October 10th & 11th in “Das Schloß”, Schwere-Reiter-Str. 15, 80637 Munich.
Admission is free
The fifth Pan-African Congress will take place in Munich, this time under the slogan
"Reclaiming African and African Diasporic Voices!"
The previous four Pan-African congresses, which took place every second year in Munich were received with positive international feedback. The slogan of this year's congress refers to the “Decade for People of African Descent” from 2015 to 2025, which was proclaimed by the United Nations and aims to bring the situation of African descended peoples more into focus. This conference aims to garner more attention for the Pan-Africanist cause. In our view, the decade is connected with political demands for participation and equality.
The Pan-Africanism Working Group, host of the Congress and member of the recently founded network ENPAD, European Network for People of African Descent, will focus on the following themes:
- Science and Research from an African and Afro-Diasporic Perspective
- Burkina Faso - a Revolution with International Significance
- SOS! Present Day Slavery in Africa (e.g. Mauretania)
- Commemoration: October 1945, Fifth Pan-African Congress in Manchester / October 2015, Seventy Years Later, Continuum of Pan-African Movement
- SOS! Refugee Dramas: Responsibilities and Challenges
For more information regarding the aforementioned themes please see the information below.
A panel from experts from Africa and the African Diaspora(s) will present their perspectives in the form of presentations, moderated panel discussions and round of Q & A.
The congress is dedicated to the legacy of the following African and African-diasporic luminaries:
Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop (*29.12.1923 - †07.02.1986): a Pan-African researcher and one of the most famous Egyptologists of the African continent.
Dr. Maya Angelou (*04.04.1928 - †28.05.2014): an Afro-American writer, professor and important personality of the civil-rights movement and was acquainted with Martin Luther King and Malcom X. She moved to Ghana where she taught at the University of Ghana's School of Music and Drama.
The schedule will be complemented with an exhibition about Cheikh Anta Diop and Maya Angelou, as well as a cultural programme of traditional and contemporary African music by African artists and musicians.
In cooperation with the project "Urban Vibes " of the Cultural Department of the City of Munich, a live concert " Urban Panafrican Vibes" will take place during the Congress on Saturday 10 October with Sams'k le Jah and Smockey from Burkina Faso at the venue of the congress „Das Schloß“.
More detailed information regarding the programme can be found below or online: http://www.panafrikanismusforum.net
You will also find a review of the past congresses including photo galleries and videos.
Save the date!: Congress press conference will be held on October 10th at "Das Schloß" .. All are cordially invited.
Please spread the news about the Pan-African Congress in Munich. We will gladly send you photo material in printable resolution upon request.
On behalf of the organizing team
Pan-Africanism Working Group Munich e.V.
Augsburger Str. 13
Tel. 0176 61433577
Fax: 089 - 76 22 36
Major Themes of the Conference
Science and Research from the African Perspective
Whenever Europe, Germany or generally the Western countries discuss science and research; Africa or people of African descent are not included nor are their view points considered. For most people the African continent and its peoples, there are mainly negative depictions that focus on poverty, hunger, war, dictatorship and catastrophes of every kind. However,, people from Africa and its Diaspora have made progressive contributions to many international fields. Nevertheless, Africa hardly benefits from its developments but rather suffers from them. By focusing on this first topic we want to underline the presence African and African diasporic peoples in field of international science and research to counter negative depictions, prejudices and stereotypes.
Burkina Faso - A Revolution With International Significance
In October 2014, the youth and women in Burkina Faso mobilized to overthrow the dictatorship within three days, which was ongoing for 27 years. They are still fighting with peaceful intent for the democratization of their country without any help from the outside. The previous fighting - as well as the three days - can be called the realization of the revolution, which is going to include all political and social sectors of Burkina Faso in the future. This event has an international importance by showing other societies and nations - particularly African states, which suffer from dictatorship and a non-functional rule of law - that resistance against suppression is possible and foremost, how far a strong common will of citizens can lead to.
In the context of the second main topic we want to investigate the current situation – a year after the revolution in Burkina Faso. Therefore, we are going to invite certain activists and discuss following questions:
- Are we actually speaking of a revolution or an uprising?
- How was this development actually possible?
- Which challenges will follow in the aftermath?
- Could this development also take place elsewhere?
SOS! Present Day Slavery in Africa (e.g. Mauritania)
We are very concerned about the ongoing global enslavement of Black people particularly in Mauritania, where it is still practised in the 21st century. Freedom fighters such as Biram Dah Abeid (Weimar Human Rights Award Winner), activist for a Mauritania without enslavement, and his co-activists have been in jail since November 2014 because of their commitment. The aim of the third theme of the congress seeks to discuss strategies for gaining the freedom of Biram Dah Abeid by October 2015, so that he can participate in the Congress. The goal here is to jointly develop solutions and other procedures for the abolition of slavery.
Commemoration: October 1945, Fifth Pan-African Congress in Manchester / October 2015, Seventy Years Later, Continuum of Pan-African Movement
On October 15, the fifth Pan-African Congress in Manchester was dedicated to the situation of the African continent and the people of African descent in the Diaspora.
The subsequent decolonization of Africa, which took place at the end of the 1950s and at the beginning of the 1960s, was shaped by the results of the congress.
The congress denounced imperialism and capitalism and called for racism to be considered a crime. Some participants of the congress were later statesmen in Africa: Hastings Banda(Malawi), Kwame Nkrumah(Ghana), Obafemi Awolowo(Nigeria) and Jomo Kenyatta (Kenia.70 years later finds coincidentally held in Munich the bi-annual Pan-African Congress for the fifth time. Seventy years later the bi-annual Pan-African Congress will be held in Munich for the fifth time. It is important for us to look back and to seek solutions to these persistent challenges.
SOS! Refugee dramas: The Responsibilities and Challenges
As Pan-Africanists standing for international exchange and equal rights we cannot close the congress without mentioning the refugee drama in the Mediterranean Sea. Thousands of children, sisters, brothers and parents from the Diaspora have drowned and
are lying on the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. These individuals have chosen to migrate because they had no other choice for survival. They fled and flee from dictatorships, wars, persecution, natural disasters, starvation etc. In the past decades, the Mediterranean Sea has become a cemetery for people of African descent. During this Congress we would like to denounce the societal structures that have led to this situation. Last but not least, we want to work together with our invited guests and participants in order to find solutions.
Motto: Reclaiming African and Diasporic Voices
This year´s Congress is being dedicated to the following African and African diasporic luminaries:
(1)The late Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop (1923-1986). He was a Pan African researcher and a famous Egyptologist in Africa. (2) In honor to the late Dr. Maya Angelou (1928-2014) She was an African- American writer, Professor and an important civil rights advocate for African-Americans in USA and African descendants. Martin Luther King and Malcom X were her allies.
Patronage: Mr Dieter Reiter, Lord Mayor of the State capital Munich
-Mrs Millicent Adjei (Pan-Africanism Working Group & Arca – Afrikanisches Bildungszentrum e. V. in Hamburg)
-Mrs Obenewa Amponsah (Chief Executive Officer of the Steve Biko Foundation in Johannesburg, SA)
Date: Sat. 10th October 2015, Location: “Das Schloß” (The Castle) Schwere-Reiter-str. 15, 80637 Munich
9.00-9.30hrs: Press Conference
10.00hrs: Observing of Congress Protocol (Opening ceremony)
10.15-10.30hrs: Welcome address by the representative from the State Munich, Council of Foreigners of Munich and the Pan African Working group, Munich e.V.
THEME: Science and Research from the African Perspective
10.35-11.15hrs: Documentary film about the late Dr. Maya Angelou.
11.20-11.40: Special tribute to Dr Maya Angelou by Marrianne Balle, Modupe Laja and Matilda Legitimus- Schleicher.
11.45-12.15: Music Interlude
12.20-12.55: Documentary film about the late Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop
13.00-13.40: Recognition or a missing universal perception of Africans and black people in the World of science and research. Speaker: Affiong L. Affiong
13.45-14.45: Break for Lunch
14.50-15.00: Egyptology and its Origin: The Role of African Science. Speaker: Prof. Theophile Obenga, former co-reseacher of Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop
15.55-16.30: Afro-culture as Cultural Knowledge. Speaker: Dr Natasha Kelly, University of Münster
16.35-17.10: Science and Racism: Epistemological breach of Dr. Anta Diop Speaker: Prof. Dr. Mubabinge Biolo. (Director; European Branch of INADEP)
17.15-18-15: Panel discussion with Affiong L Affiong, Prof. Theophile Obenga, . Prof.Dr. Mubabinge Bilolo and Dr Natasha Kelly.
THEME: Burkina Faso, a Revolution of Global Political Importance
18.55-19.30 Fractions and Revolutionary Progression and its relevance for the Pan African
state building. Speaker: Aziz Salmone Fall, Canada.
19.35-20.35 Moderated discussion with Samska le Jah and Smockey, artists and actors of the Revolution of Burkina Faso, founder of “Balai Le citoyen “ movement and Aziz Salmone …… under the topics:
(a) Can people actually speak of a revolution or was it just a mere revolt?
(b) How was this development possible? (c) What are the pending challenges in perception? (Panel discussion afterwards…)
20:40-21:55 Break (revamp for an anticipated live concert)
22.00-02.00: Live Concert with Thomas Sankara Band from Burkina Faso and closing Get-Together party with DJ Sounds.
Sunday, 11th October 2015
09.00: Members of Pan African working group meet at the Exhibition Hall
10:00: Continuation of the day´s program
Theme: SOS! The inhuman Modern Enslavement of African people (e.g. Mauritania)
10.15-10.50: The Current Situation of Enslavement in Mauritania and the Expectations of the Victims Over There. Speaker: Biram Dah Abeid
Theme: Commemoration: October 1945, Fifth Pan-African Congress in Manchester / October 2015, 70 years later, Continuum of Pan-African Movement
10.55-11.35: Seventy Years After the Manchester Pan-African Congress - Retrospective and Current Challenges.
Speaker: Prof. Hakim Adi, historian, University of Chichester
Theme: SOS! Refugee Dramas: The Responsibilities and Challenges
11.40-12.20: Refugee Dramas: The Perception in Africa. Speaker: Francis Kpatinde, Journalist by Jeune Afrique, France
12.25-13-25: Break for Lunch
13.30-14.10: Refugee dramas: African´s Own Responsibilities or European Hegemony? Speaker: Fatou Diome
14.15-15.30: Panel discussion on the theme “ A New Directory for a Human Migration Policy” with Fatou Diome, Prof. Hakim Adi, Francis Kpatande and Sadija Klepo (Funder of "Hilfe von Mensch zu Mensch e.V.").
Moderator: Ibrahim Maiga
16.00: End and departure
17.00: Network Meeting: Central Council of the African Community in Germany - Zentralrat der Afrikanischen Gemeinde in Deutschland.
The schedule is going to be complemented with an exhibition about Dr. Maya Angelou
and Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop.
Furthermore, programmes with concert Sams'k le Jah and Smockey from Burkina Faso in other
cities in Germany and Switzerland:
6. & 7.10.2015: Karlsruhe
16.10.2015 : Berlin
17.10.2015 : Köln
24.10.2015 : Genf (Switzerland)
29.10.2015 : Jura (Switzerland)
Sponsored by: Kulturreferat der Landeshauptstadt München
Kooperationspartner: Ausländerbeirat der Landeshauptstadt München, Brot für die Welt- Evangelischer Entwicklungsdienst, Katholischer Fonds, Petra Kelly Stiftung, Kurt Eisner Verein- Rosa Luxemburg-Stiftung, Hilfe von Mensch zu Mensch e.V., Reise Büro Sacco, Netzwerk München e.V., Zentralrat der afrikanischen Gemeinde in Deutschland e.V, Initiativ Gruppe Interkulturelle Begegnung und Bildung e.V. München, AFROTAK TV cyberNomad in Berlin, AfricAvenir International e.V., Pan-African Women’s Organisation - PAWLO e.V., Steve Biko Foundation in Südafrika, Bayerischer Flüchtlingsrat, LoNam-Magazin, Afrika Kulturprojekte e.V. Frankfurt, Stoffwechsel e.V. Karlsruhe, ENPAD European Network for People of African Descent, ARB-NRW, Die „Association des Ressortissants Burkinabe au NRW“