Ghana Makes History with First Ever Flag Raising in Yonkers
The Ghana flag was for the first time raised in front of the Yonkers City Hall in New York to commemorate the 59th independence anniversary. It is the first ever by an African country in Yonkers.
As part of the ceremony, a traditional invocation and incantation enlisting the support and blessings of the Ghanaian ancestors was also offered by Mr. Ofori Anor, Executive Secretary of the National Council of Ghanaian Associations (NCOGA).
Organized by the National Council of Ghanaian Associations (NCOGA ) and the City of Yonkers, the colourful event on Thursday,( March 4, 2016) was attended by Councilors of the city, friends of Ghana, executives of the NCOGA, the Ghanaian community,some of whom were dressed in traditional costumes and officials of the Permanent Mission of Ghana to the United Nations.
Mr. Mike Spano, Yonkers Mayor said the city thought it fitting to honour and recognize Ghana with the flag raising ceremony,the first ever to an African country in the New York state.
” Yonkers is proud to have Ghanaians among the diversity of Yonkers, that includes people of all countries,”he stated praising the Ghanaian community for being part of the positive change in the city.
The Mayor also paid tribute to the forbears and Pan-Africanists, whose contributions gave roots to Ghana’s independence 59 years ago, remarking that ‘today we are celebrating Ghana’s riches”.
Mrs Martha Ama Akyaa Pobee, Ghana’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations said “flags are symbols of governments and their people and so this ceremony is an expression of the excellent relations between the government of Ghana and the United States of America as well as the enduring friendship that exists between our peoples.
“Yonkers has proven to be a laboratory for multiculturalism, multiracialism and plural religion as evidenced in the different ethnicities and nationalities that have been welcomed by the city”.
To this end, the Ambassador noted that, ‘the raising of Ghana’s flag will be a little sign that your experiment here is now going global and that soon, we will have a miniature United Nations in a city. That experience is not unlike the proverbial Ghanaian hospitality and it resonates very well with us.”
A New York State Senator, Andrea Stewart-Cousins highlighted the significance of the event, saying ” this is the first time an African country’s flag has been raised here”
She could not hide her joy remarking that “thank you for being great contributors to our nation. There are so many Ghanaians in Yonkers and we join you to celebrate the anniversary.”
Later, the City of Yonkers presented proclamations to Ambassador Martha Pobee, the Consul General of Ghana in New York, Mr.Bernard K. Quantson and NCOGA. The Mission in turn presented a certificate of appreciation to Mayor Spano for successfully hosting the first-ever flag raising ceremony in Yonkers for an African country.