Afrika Kwa Kweli | Photo by Emily Lewis | The Wright State Guardian
The African Student Union’s Afrika Kwa Kweli event presented a showcase of African culture, featuring a dinner, show and various performances.
ASU held the event on Saturday, March 25, from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. in Apollo. The organization planned the event in collaboration with the Wright State University Center for International Education.
The ASU president Yakai Kamara, vice president Tobechukwu Eziolise and secretary Marvin Oloo worked with other members of the ASU executive board and even non-members to ensure that the event was a success.
“It’s stressful but rewarding,” Eziolise said.
The cost of putting the event together was around $3,600, which was lower than ASU expected due to negotiations with vendors and artists. ASU requested partial funding from UCIE in October and received it in January.
Preparations, including reserving vendors and planning the itinerary, took off in January.
Any student could attend after reserving a ticket on ASU’s Engage page. Upon arriving, ASU assigned a table based on an African country complete with a flag and a sheet of facts about said country.
The event began with a dinner highlighting Senegalese dishes of jollof rice, lamb, meat pies, plantains and more.
Kamara gave a welcome speech followed by an ASU alumni speech reflecting on past Afrika Kwa Kweli nights and the importance of such an event.
The opening speeches were followed by a Nigerian dance and drum performance, engaging the audience to clap and dance to the beat.
One of the most unique aspects of the event was showcasing the diversity of African culture, with students from nearly 20 different African countries participating in the flag walk, featuring students carrying flags from respective countries.
“I think the flag walk is unique too because people who are doing the flag walk are students here that are from those countries. So, we get to show the diversity at Wright State and the diversity they have from different African students and countries,” Kamara said.
Nearly a dozen sub-events were included, including Bars Kid followed by a vocal performance from Amirah Musa, then the ASU dance team then took to the stage, followed by performer Bria Perkins, the best dressed award and another performance by the ASU dance team.
“One thing that’s unique is that, for one, Africa is a big continent, 54 countries, so each country gets to shine. We’re bringing all the cultures and trying to show it off at once, and it can be a unique experience for people who don’t get to travel to those countries or know about those countries to learn something new or see something that they haven’t seen before,” Oloo said.
The crowning of Mr. and Ms. Africa came next, which ASU announced previously at the Mr. and and Ms. Africa pageant on Tuesday, March 21.
The Bi-okoto performers came to the stage then the ASU-original play “Golden Rags,” where the ASU executive board reflects on as taking great preparations in writing and performing.
Next came a performance of the Oki dancers. Yeahmel performed next, followed by another performance by the ASU dance team. The evening concluded with the best dancer award and a fashion show showcasing traditional African attire.
ASU emphasizes that the event was a great opportunity for people to learn about and experience cultures from different parts of Africa. For more information and events from ASU, visit the organization’s Engage page.