Accra – Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza, Dennis Lambert, Ian Schlakman – 2020 nominees and candidates for the Presidential race on the ticket of the Green Party and Poor People of the United States have endorsed calls for the US Government to pay penance for the injustice meted out against blacks who suffered from the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.
According to a joint statement issued on Wednesday as part of the pre-awareness creation of a hearing on the demand for reparations at the Congressional Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, the group stated that “a nation that makes laws that are unjust must make amends for those injustices. Our nation, for better or worse, was built on a system of oppression, and despite legislation to reverse the institutional racism; we still have not done a full penance for the original sin of the foundation of the United States of America- slavery.”
According to them, among all the other harms and horrors of chattel slavery of Africans in the United States (and many other colonial predecessors and successors) was the largest and longest-lasting wage theft in human history. For this reason, if for no other, there is the need to compensate the descendents of slaves including interests and penalties.
On Wednesday, a fiery debate erupted at the first congressional hearing in a decade to explore whether the descendants of US slaves should be compensated. In a BBC report, some witnesses said reparations would damage the relationship between white and black Americans, while others said it was imperative to achieve justice. Several Democratic White House hopefuls have taken up the idea of reparations. But Republican leader Mitch McConnell has made it clear no reparations bill will pass while he controls the Senate.
As part of the witnesses, Actor Danny Glover told the panel that reparations would cure “the damages inflicted by enslavement and forced racial exclusionary policies”. “A national reparations policy is a moral, democratic and economic imperative,” Mr Glover said.
An umbrella coalition formed by Black Empowerment consisting of national lawyers, and human rights activists from across the country, including leaders from Black Lawyers For Justice (BlackRightsMatter), Afro-Descendant Institute of Human Rights, the New Black Panther Party, recovery act activists and others also planned to be in attendance during the hearing on H.R. 40, legislation to study slavery and to propose actual remedies in the form of Reparations for the descendants of slavery here in America.
“There is a growing militancy and growing Black Nationalism in America due to Donald Trump and his presidency. This new militant generation is represented by the New Black Panther Party and we will be in force on Capitol Hill to ensure things go the right way.” – Hashim Nzinga – National Chairman – New Black Panther Party
In Ghana, the Government of Ghana together with the diasporan community have declared the “Year of Return” to hold series of events marking black emancipation from the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. There are reports that about 500,000 diasporans will be accorded with citizenship. The growing debate for reparations is very strong among the community in Ghana with supports also coming from the Rastafari Council of Ghana.