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Barbados, Suriname, and St Lucia to open embassies in Ghana and Kenya to foster closer ties between Africans in the continent and the diaspora.

During a joint conference between the Prime minister of Barbados, Mia Amor motley, and Ghana’s President Nana-Akuffo Addo, she announced that Barbados will open an embassy in Ghana. President Nana Akuffo-Addo was on a tour of five Caribbean countries in June this year, which saw him visit Barbados, Jamaica, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta also toured the Caribbean Nations in August this year which saw him visit Jamaica and Barbados.

The outcomes of these visits by the African presidents were fruitful. Barbadian Prime Minister also reciprocated by paying a visit to Ghana last week. Furthermore, several bilateral ties were signed between the two African countries with their Caribbean counterparts. They include Barbados and Suriname partnering to establish an embassy in Ghana. Similarly, Barbados and St Lucia will also partner to establish an embassy in Kenya. An invitation was also sent to all other CARICOM countries to join in the venture.

Several business MOUs were also signed to further cement the ties between Africa and CARICOM. The Kenyan and Barbadian chambers of commerce will engage and collaborate with each other more. Including areas of taxation, revenues and digital currency agreements.

More African countries need to extend to other members of the African diaspora

Ghana and Kenya have done an exemplary job by leading the initiative to connect the Africans in the continent and the diaspora. Ghana has in fact dedicated 2019 as the year of return. This initiative invites the African diaspora to visit Ghana and connect with their roots.

More African countries should follow in Ghana’s footsteps to invite the diaspora to visit their ancestral homes. This will foster closer ties between the two families. Furthermore, African countries should make it easier for members of the diaspora to attain citizenship.

Win-win situation for both regions

The African diaspora could also play its part in transforming the fortunes of Africa. This is because they have skills and expertise that could be utilized in Africa countries. They can invest in African countries of their choice and help the local economy and create employment opportunities or skills transfer.

Both Africa and the Caribbean have the best tourism spots in the world. As a result, the two could visit each other’s regions for tourism. The Barbadian and Ghanaian and Kenyan governments are working on establishing direct flights between the regions to ease the movement of people.

The members of the African diaspora are also encouraged to visit African countries of their choice and cement ties with their ancestral homelands. The initiatives made by African countries is to let them know that they are highly welcomed in Africa. After all the African Union has called the African diaspora its sixth member.

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