On May 25, 1963, thirty-one African leaders convened a summit meeting and founded the Organization of African Unity. They renamed 'Africa Freedom Day' as 'African Liberation Day.'
On Wednesday, Zambia joined the rest of the African continent in commemorating the Africa Freedom Day with President Hakainde Hichilema calling for the exploitation of Africa's abundant natural resources to grow economies.
While acknowledging that many countries on the continent have attained political independence, the Zambian leader expressed concern that many countries have not yet attained economic emancipation.
He expressed concern that the continent was still grappling with many challenges such as food insecurity, instability as well as other challenges which have been worsened by the pandemic. Africa was endowed with abundant natural resources which could go a long way in unlocking sustainable development and improving food security if properly harnessed.
"These resources can improve food security in our country, the region, continent and the rest of the world if they are properly managed and harnessed," Hichilema said in his address to mark the day which was televised on the state broadcaster.
#May25 is the day to celebrate #AfricanLiberationDay and to commemorate the struggle of African people worldwide for emancipation, and against bondage, oppression, colonialism and imperialism.— International Peoples' Assembly (@peoplesassembl_) May 25, 2022
We raise our voices for Africa freedom and liberation! ✊������#PanAfricanism pic.twitter.com/CWpFyiAFc1
While the continental theme for this year's commemoration is "Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent", Zambia chose the local theme, "Leveraging National Resources to Boost Food Security". The Zambia leader said the country was self-sufficient in the production of maize, cassava and groundnuts which could go a long way in contributing to food security if properly managed.
The main commemoration in Lusaka, the country's capital, started with a wreath-laying ceremony at the Freedom Statue in honor of people who died while fighting for the country's independence. A ceremony was later held at State House in which various people were honored for their contribution to the country's development in various areas.
"On May 25, 1963, thirty-one African leaders convened a summit meeting and founded the Organization of African Unity (OAU). They renamed 'Africa Freedom Day' as 'African Liberation Day'," Faces of Haiti recalled, adding that "today we celebrate us, our ancestors, and our roots."