Accra,- The Pan-African Writers Association (PAWA), has presented advance copies of a Book it has authored in honour of the late former President Jerry John Rawlings, to former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings.
PAWA is an umbrella body of writers’ associations on the African continent and the Diaspora.
A statement signed by Mr Kobina Andoh Amoakwa, the Executive Secretary, Office of former President Rawlings, copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the Book titled, “J.J. Rawlings: Memories and Mementos”, which was presented by Dr Wale Okediran, PAWA General Secretary, was a collection of poetry, short fiction, tributes and essays from contributors from across the continent.
Making the presentation at the office of Mrs Agyeman-Rawlings, Dr Okediran said the Book was brought about by the outpouring of emotion by many African writers and commentators from all over Africa.
He said it was a collection of writings and poems from 15 countries.
The PAWA Secretary General said President Rawlings impacted on writers across the continent and that it was under his tenure that the continental association was established in 1989.
The Book, he stated, was a tribute to how the departed former Ghanaian leader inspired many on the continent and beyond.
Mrs Agyeman-Rawlings thanked PAWA for the gesture and expressed concern about the low standards in the media in terms of the quality of language used by some practitioners.
She recalled how in the ‘good old days’ radio and newspapers were a good source to learn how to speak and write English and urged the Pan African Writers Association to help revive traditional and cultural values through their writings.
The former First Lady said there was nothing wrong with good, old-fashioned ways of bringing up a child, stating that it was important that the child grew up in a way that was acceptable to society.
“We have to instill in our children a certain traditional way even as we become modernised so that they do not move too far away from who we are as a people. Who is in charge of what our children see and emulate? Education is a tool; your upbringing is your tradition and your life,” Mrs Agyeman-Rawlings said.
Dr Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings, the Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle, who was also at the meeting, said it was always refreshing when something happened spontaneously, referring to the manner the Book was developed.
“It is an opportunity for people to realise that JJ had a broader impact on the region (Africa) than many seem to realise,” Dr Agyeman-Rawlings said.
“It is an opportunity for PAWA to speak about the role President Rawlings played in the organisation’s inception.
“There is a whole generation who do not know some of these issues because some of his contemporaries have not publicly acknowledged the role he played in the establishment and expansion of other sectors such as the arts.”
The statement said PAWA would launch the Book in Accra by the middle of December 2021.
It said the Book was edited by Professor Bill F. Ndi, a Cameroonian Professor of Modern Languages and Philosophy, Fellow of the Booker T. Washington Leadership Institute and a Faculty Senate Chair at Tuskegee University.
The statement said Mr Abdourahamane Diallo from Guinea, the current head of UNESCO in Ghana, wrote the forward.
Also present at the meeting were Amina Agyeman-Rawlings and Kimathi Agyeman-Rawlings.
The PAWA delegation include, Louis Mensah, Accountant, Reine Fioklou, Programme Officer and Oswald Okaitey, Media Consultant.
Source: Ghana News Agency