UN Migration Agency, Ghanaian Rapper Release Song about Irregular Migration
Accra – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, this week (26/04) released No Place Like Home – a song to sensitize the Ghanaian youth about the dangers of irregular migration. The song and music video were produced by Kofi Kinaata, a Ghanaian musician and songwriter appointed as IOM Goodwill Ambassador in November 2017.
The launch was part of a three-day awareness-raising campaign on the dangers of irregular migration conducted in Takoradi, the capital city of Ghana’s Western Region, one of the main areas of origin for Ghanaian returnees from Libya.
“The song encourages the listener to think critically about the choice to migrate irregularly,” said Kofi Kinaata. “In our haste to make money, we forget that the grass is not always greener on the other side and that there are opportunities in Ghana.” Kinaata drew inspiration for the song from personal experiences of friends from Takoradi who have migrated irregularly, as well as from a recent trip to the Brong Ahafo Region where he joined IOM in awareness raising events.
The event was concluded by an award ceremony, during which three Ghanaian youths were rewarded for their participation in the Make It Happen in Africa Competition, launched in December 2017 to encourage young Ghanaians to explore opportunities existing in Ghana.
"Let us, in our own small ways become ambassadors ourselves, to tell our youth to believe in Ghana. We hope that through the launch of the song today, the media will also help propagate this message," said Gifty Kusi, Deputy Regional Minister for the Western Region
“We must continue to raise awareness among the youth in Ghana on the dangers of irregular migration, and even more importantly how they can access opportunities that exist here in Ghana,” said Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, IOM Ghana Chief of Mission.
In 2016 alone, 5,636 Ghanaians arrived in Italy by sea, an increase from 4,431 in 2015. Most Ghanaians trying to reach Europe travel through Libya. Since June 2017, as part of the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration, IOM has assisted 496 Ghanaians to voluntarily return from Libya, and is in the process of facilitating their reintegration in their communities of return.
IOM’s awareness raising activities are funded by the EU-IOM Joint Initiative, and include community events, focus group discussions and radio talk shows in Takoradi, New Takoradi and Sekondi in Ghana’s Western Region.
The launch of "No Place Like Home" and the awards ceremony for Make it Happen in Africa contest was attended by the Deputy Regional Minister, Regional Commander for Ghana Immigration Service, representative from the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, students and community members.
Watch the video here.