Historic Trade Agreement with African Nations &
African-American Farmers to be Signed at Mississippi
Delta Economic Development Summit



National News

Exodus News
Tracy, CA

January 15, 1999



(Yazoo City, Mississippi) - The African World Network Organization (AWNO), with representatives from several African nations (Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Sierra Leone, Congo, Mali, Trinidad, Tobego and South Africa) will sign a historic trade agreement with African-American farmers at the 1st Annual African & African-American Mississippi Delta Economic Development Summit, on Saturday, February 6, 1999, at the Triangle Cultural Center, in Yazoo City, Mississippi. "America's leaders, with the backing of the American people, have taken unprecedented actions recently in establishing trade in countries where there have been long standing differences," states Lloyd Moore, Chairman of the Moore Group and host of the historic summit. "We must engage in constructive efforts to help these countries, while at the same time, we help ourselves."

"It just makes common sense to foster a healthy economic relationship with our extended African family to create business opportunities for our farmers," states Rev., Dr. Ronald Myers, Sr., President of the Myers Foundation, Inc., Mississippi Delta medical missionary and co-host of the summit. "The signing of the trade agreement is indeed an answer to prayer!"

"It is recognized that the needs of both Africans and African-Americans would be well served through the import and export of agricultural goods between African-American farmers and African nations," states Eddie Carthan, President of the Mississippi Family Farmers. "It is only fitting that we join with those who wish to make a meaningful step toward economic prosperity and the opening of trade avenues with our brothers and sisters."

"This represents a tremendous economic opportunity for Mississippi Delta African-American Farmers," states David Howard, President of the Mileston Farmers Cooperative, the oldest black farming cooperative in American history. "We support without reservation this historic trade agreement and are committed toward the successful implementation of trade with Africa."

The trade initiative is strongly supported by the State Representative Avery Alexander and Mayor Marc Morial of New Orleans. Carl Gammon, Deputy Director for International Trade and African Affairs for the City of New Orleans, and AWNO founder, Dr. Nchor Okorn, a Nigerian native and Professor of Political Science at Dillard University, are among the signers on the trade agreement. "Few people have stronger historic and cultural ties than Africans and African-Americans," states Dr. Okorn. The AWNO is an international, non-profit organization promoting African art, culture, tourism and trade among people of African origin throughout the world.

AWNO Executive Chairman, Dr. Daniel F. Sarpong, is scheduled to officially announce the appointment of Lloyd Moore as Chairman of the Mississippi Delta Chapter of the AWNO at the summit. The AWNO has chapters in Houston (USA), London (UK) and Nigeria. "We are planning to establish chapters in Ghana, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Congo and South Africa in 1999," states Dr. Sarpong. "We will all be working together to foster trade opportunities between our countries."

Etha Robinson, Founder of the African-American Food Association, based in Los Angeles, CA will also sign the historic trade agreement. "We must be about the business of establishing food networks throughout the African-American community and network with African nations," states Robinson. "We will be creating our own business opportunities as Africans and African-Americans. Our most important world trade opportunities and economic destiny rest with Africa, the mother country, from which those nations signing our historic trade agreement enthusiastically anticipate doing business with our black farmers."

Rev. Mark Pollard, President of the Common Ground Coalition, will be hosting the state visit of Benin President Matthew Kerekou, in Washington, DC, on Friday, February 5, 1999. Several Mississippi representatives are planning to travel to Washington to meet with President Kerekou and return in time for the signing ceremony in Yazoo City. "Our activities in Washington with President Kerekou are also part of the spirit of the economic development summit, even though schedules will not allow us to travel to the Mississippi Delta," states Rev. Pollard. "President Kerekou's endorsement of the trade agreement will go a long way toward opening avenues of trade with this important African nation."

The summit is sponsored by the Common Ground Coalition, the Myers Foundation, Inc., and the Moore Group, in association with the African-American Male Institute, John Mosley, President, in New Orleans, LA. For more information contact Lloyd Moore at (601)-991-0777 or feel free to e-mail at trimogrp@bellsouth.net. You can reach Dr. Ron Myers at (601)-247-1471 or contact www.commonground.net or e-mail at myersfound@aol.com

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