23. 5. 2016
African Liberation Day: learn about the most influential African leaders of 20th century.


Kwame Nkrumah (1909 – 1972)

The father of Pan-Africanism and African nationalism. His way of life is now studied and practiced as Nkrumahism. Kwame Nkrumah was voted in December 2000 by BBC as “Man of the Millennium”.  He was the first head of an independent black African state: As midnight struck on March 5, 1957 and the British colony, Gold Coast, became Ghana, Nkrumah declared: “We are going to see that we create our own African personality and identity”, which gave birth to the African Union course. 



Haile Selassie (1892 – 1975)

On May 25, 1963 the Organization for African Unity (OAU) was established with a permanent headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, was selected as the first President of the OAU. He was a great mediator during the meeting that brought forth the OAU now AU convincing Kwame Nkrumah to not to leave as others sought to object his unity plan for Africa. One of his remembered quotes is “An awareness of our past is essential to the establishment of our personality and our identity as Africans”. 



Patrice Émery Lumumba (1925 – 1961)

Patrice Lumumba was the first legally elected prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). His assassination on 17 January, 1961 is remembered as the most important assassination of the 20th century. Lumumba’s murder made him a symbol of struggle for championing African attempts to unite and to break free of the influence of the European powers that once colonized the African continent hence during that period he was referred to as the “the hero of Africa.

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