With the ravages of COVID-19 raging in some countries, especially the United States, the Council Of Ewe Associations Of North America (CEANA) took to what has become a new way of hosting events, Virtual. Chicago served as the hub for broadcasting live feeds from Atlanta, the rest of the USA, and Ghana to fans of CEANA across the globe. There were also prerecorded greetings and shows from prominent leaders of CEANA and artists across the world. We produce below the full communique of the CEANA 2020 below.
The Council of Ewe Associations of North America (CEANA) held its 27th Annual Convention from September 4th to September 6th, 2020, virtually for the first time under the theme: “Resolve to Continue the Socio-economic Development of Eweland”. The event was watched by over 45,000 people on YouTube and Facebook around the world.
This is the 27th Annual Convention of CEANA, which was originally scheduled to be hosted by the Ewe Association of Georgia, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia (GA), USA, this year 2020. However, due to the dreadful COVID-19 pandemic, the actual physical convention has been postponed to 2021 and will still be held in Atlanta, GA. Even though it was a tough decision, it also gave us the opportunity to do something new and hence the Virtual Convention.
The convention hosted virtually from the USA, Ghana, and Togo, opened on Friday, September 4, 2020, with performances from Arizona by Julidoe and Jewel Akusika from New York and a message from the vintage Chilli Mama.
The welcome address was delivered from Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, by Dr. Tsatsu E. Nyamadi, the President of CEANA. The President reminded the viewers that conventions are unique opportunities to reflect on the past year’s activities, make plans for the future, and raise funds for upcoming projects. It is also an occasion of celebrating our traditions, culture, organizing family gatherings, meeting old friends, and making new ones but not forgetting the enormous networking opportunities presented.
For the three (3) days, attendees saw developmental projects that CEANA has completed and those that are still in progress. Among ongoing projects were construction work on a pedestrian footbridge across River Tordzie (in Ghana) and the construction of a three (3) classroom block and an office at Davu (in Togo). The pedestrian footbridge is aimed at providing relief to the people of Agordoe (in Ghana) who have to swim across the river daily to access Torve and neighboring villages, to attend school and for health and other basic services. The Davu classroom block is to provide a safe and quiet place for school children, who are currently studying under trees and in a dilapidated building, to learn.
Friday’s activities included greetings from some CEANA member associations and the showcasing of CEANA projects, both completed and ongoing. Goodwill messages from Ghana came from Torgbuiga Dorglo Anumah VI, Chief of Avenor (who was introduced by Torgbui Butuvor II), and Torgbe Gobo Dake XII, Dufia of Tsito Awudome. There were also cultural performances from Glikporme by Seat of Wisdom Ewe Borborbor Dance Group in Ghana and the Ewe Association of Washington DC Metro Area Dance Ensemble and the United Volta Association’s Gbolo Group from New York.
Ghanaian artists, including the duo Kose & Shittor, Mama Volta, Everyday, VStars and JJ Gonami thrilled viewers with their performances for the rest of the night.
On Saturday, projects that CEANA has completed in Ghana and Togo were showcased along with greetings from the remaining CEANA member associations. There were also additional performances from Ghanaian artists such as Hans Bekx, Torgbui Olokojoko, Dzidu, Eva Winner, Delali Vonoo, Queen Elish, Mama-Vee and Julidoe.
There were also greetings from the CEANA representative in Ghana, Nana Ofei Asamani I, also known as Torgbe Agbelorm, and Torgbui Agokorli of Notsie in Togo. Nana Asamani I praised the team spirit and togetherness of all Ewes across the USA and Canada and their resolve to help in the development of Eweland. He urged other Ewes across the world to emulate what CEANA is doing. Torgbui Agokorli congratulated the Ewes for coming together to make this Virtual Convention a reality and urged CEANA to continue their good work in Eweland.
On Sunday morning, a well-attended non-denominational church service was held. The service was officiated by Rev. Martin Osae of Woodhaven (Ghanaian Community) Presbyterian Church, Irving, Texas, Rev. Charity Goh of Glory Chapel Global Evangelical Church, Bronx, New York, and Rev. Divine Tamakloe of Global Evangelicals Church Kingdom Chapel, New Jersey. During the service, a moment of silence was held in memory of CEANA members who passed on since the last CEANA Convention in 2019.
On Sunday afternoon, the program continued with acknowledgment and presentation of the Class of 2020; the CEANA Youth who graduated from college and high school. There were also artist performances and these included Jah Phinga, Cano Z’s and Agboti Yawo.
In the evening of Sunday, a well-attended Toli Night, hosted by Dr. Bernard Gadagbui and the 1st Vice President of CEANA, Prince Gbeklui, a.k.a. Efo Kofi, crowned the festivities. The ToliNight presented the opportunity to discuss various topics which included Ewe culture, tradition as well as areas to further explore.
I would like to personally acknowledge the following: Mr. Steve Dei, Empress Mawusi Kudjawo, Mr. Michael Zuberu aka Torgbui Hododuio, Mr. Daniel Soglo aka SB Don, Mr. Alfred Amuzu, Ms. Rachel Dabla and Efo Etse Agbemabiese as the MCs for the convention programs. Sponsorship, media, video and photography coverage were provided by Trend AfricaTV, Ako Radio, Steve Show, Sankofaonline Media of Chicago, Radio Gold 90.5 FM, Huntor Radio, DNT, Authentic Mama FB, RTV Denyigba and Heroes Cable Network (HCN).
The following are also acknowledged for their invaluable contributions: Dr E. Wornyo, Mr. Patrick Tamakloe, Captain Frank Gokah, Mr. Lawrence Dagadu, Mr. Kelvin Asamoa-Baah aka Royal Black Jesus, Mr. Truth Amedzekor aka Medo, the Virtual Convention Planning team, the Funds raising team, Professor Elikem Nyamuame, the CEANA Council of Representatives (COR), and all others who helped in various ways to make the Virtual Convention a success.
On behalf of the CEANA Secretariat and the CEANA Council of Representatives (COR), I, the president of CEANA, Dr. Tsatsu Nyamadi, congratulated the delegates and guests across the world for making the Virtual CEANA 2020 Convention a great success.
CEANA thanks you very much for your participation and contributions during the Virtual Convention. Your contributions are furthering the goals of CEANA; helping alleviate poverty and making positive changes in the lives of others.
God richly bless you. Mawu ne yra mi kata.