Rashad McCrorey is from Harlem, New York in the United States of America (USA). The African American is the owner of Africa Cross-Culture, a tourism company which takes black Americans to different countries in Africa, these countries include Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Rwanda. He is also a freelance journalist who have written for several black American news outlets and prominent Ghanaian news outlets with aspiration to bring his writing talents to Nigeria. McCrorey took a radical decision to self quarantine himself in Ghana due to the travel restrictions imposed by various countries to contain COVID-19. It was in this immersion experience that the gruesome killing of fellow black American George Floyd sparked global outrage and protests championed by the #BlackLivesMatter. In this chat with Global Sentinel, he spoke on various topics including his experience in Ghana, plans for US-Africa relations and especially, how African countries could be crucial in ending over 401 years of injustice against black race.
What brought you to Ghana?
I arrived in Ghana 27 February 2020 for business trip. I hosted 4 Americans in Ghana for Ghana Independence Day festivities. I hosted the guest from 3 March to 9 March. When the guest returned back to America i chose to stay behind to attend additional events. However, once the coronavirus pandemic reached America and boarder closings, lock downs and travel bans began being implemented I chose to stay in Ghana and not return to America.
How and when did you realise you have contracted COVID-19?
I have not contracted COVID-19. When I say self quarantine, it means that I chose to face the coronavirus pandemic in Ghana rather than return home to the United States. I was only supposed to be in Ghana for three weeks, but I purposely chose to stay where I have been till date.
How is the quarantine experience, the quality of healthcare and facilities?
I do not have coronavirus and have not been admitted to any facilities. I apologize for the confusion.
You talked about setting up a project in Africa. What is this project and what’s the motivation?
I currently have a successful tourism company set up in Africa. We currently provide services in the countries of Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Rwanda, with Egypt and Ghana being the most popular at the moment. I am in the process of starting a public relations company where I will be helping people get high profile press for their personal brand and businesses. The focal of my company will be to help African clients get features in America, and my America contacts to get features in Africa. I am building a media relationship between Africa and the African Diaspora in America.
What do you aim to achieve. Any targets and future plans?
I want to continue to build on the prosperity of my return to Africa tourism company for members of the African Diaspora as well as my public relations company. I believe if black Americans with the backing of the American dollars and other Africans living abroad bring in their foreign currency such as the Euro and the British Pound to Africa, it will be better for Africa. Africa as a whole can better utilize its natural resources to the collective benefit of all people of African descent. As an American, I see other races and nationalities of people use their American dollar as leverage in their home countries. I believe a concerted effort with business entrepreneurs combined with African Media outlets can build a small economy and those who chose to use the finances or recognition for the betterment of their personal lives, family and country will play a major role in history to achieve both personal and spiritual wealth.
Do you think the world will be the same again after COVID-19 and or how much impact do you think COVID-19 pandemic has had on the world?
They are certain moments in world history that changes life as we know. As an American I have seen small incidents such as 9/11 (two planes crashing into the world trade center killing 2000 people) make significant change to the world. This coronavirus has effected the entire world. Life will not be the same. The winners will be the ones who come out stronger. To come out stronger one has to be able to adjust and take advantage of new trends, creates trends, and or let go of old ways that are no longer relevant or the value has diminished. I guess even with me being a tour operator I have to understand that even though my personal brand is stronger, international tourism as a whole will take a long time to recover and even when we do recover things will be dramatically different. I have to identify those trends and capitalize on them in order to survive, which trends will you take advantage of or will you drown holding on to old beliefs systems.
Any security implications generally and also did you experience any security challenges while in Africa?
Africa has always been welcoming to me. I personally have not faced any security challenges in Africa. My passport is marked up with stamps and visas, so anytime I have shown my visa it always turns into a conversation based on my experiences traveling. As for as general safety, I have never been robbed, physically attacked or threatened in any African countries. The closest I would say is constantly being over charged once people hear my American accent.
With the issue of racism against blacks in the US. What is your take and especially the position of BlackLivesMatter?
What I appreciate the most about black lives matter is that it is a hashtag. Throughout history, Black American movements have always been infiltrated by government agencies or killed the head of such movements such as Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr, Stockly Carmichael, Huewy Newton and others of which, the movements died shortly afterward. But today, three random people can walk through the streets saying black lives matter and its official and everyone know what they mean. There is an effort by the opposition to put names and faces to the black lives matter movement so it can be vilified, watered down in scandal, and destroyed. But as long as BLM remains a chant, movement or simple belief; nothing else just simply black lives matter the movement will continue to grow until justice is reached.
What do you think should be the position of Africans and African countries on these issues?
I believe African Nations need to that continue to push the issue of 401 years of atrocities against the black American in the United Nations. The UK is responsible for the first 176 years of slavery from 1619 to 1776, and once America received its independence July 4th 1776, the US should be held fully responsible for the remaining crimes against humanity which include the final century of slavery, the lynching era, Jim crow era and what you continue to see today with police brutality, housing discrimination, educational and environment injustices, redlining and more. Though the United States may threaten Africa with physical warfare and financial sanctions, we ask mother Africa to stand firm and see the process of ending the mistreatment of the black Americans completely and put a multi generational plan together to heal and allow the Black American to progress without systematic injustice.
With the ease of lockdowns, are you still in self quarantine. And what are your final thoughts?
I am still in Ghana. I have moved to the Central Region the town of Iture a Sub-Town of Elmina. Elmina Dungeon is the home of the door of no return where many Africans where enslaved then sent to the Americas. My experience in Ghana has been and continue to be an amazing experience. Many of my Ghanaian colleagues still question the seriousness of COVID-19. I have had people I personally know say they tested positive for coronavirus however did not experience any symptoms throughout their quarantine and do not believe they ever had the virus.