Some of us are connected to countries in Africa either by ancestral lineage or through legal permitting. Many of us born and bred on the continent of Africa have had the privilege to experience its warm nature and evergreen environment. Some of us have been told tales of our forefathers been descendants of African origins and carry these yearnings of returning to our roots; of course the very champions of the Pan-Africanism clarion call. For others with no roots to the continent, but the sheer love of the people and their refreshing cultures sometimes call themselves Africans by association.
If you relate to the African continent in any way then these are the five things you should know:
Firstly, Africa is attested by most paleoanthropologists as by far the oldest inhabited territory on earth. It will interest you to know that humankind originated from Africa - Oh you heard me right! I know what the doubters say but here’s my take and backed by research of course. If you do a quick Google search on “Where did the first humans live” you will see a lot of answers all pointing towards Africa. It is believed that they originated from the current day Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania, humans eventually migrated across the world in search of food and good places to live.
Secondly, the African continent is the richest in terms of natural resources - If you ever thought otherwise then again a quick Google search can help clarify this. It is estimated that Africa holds 30% of the world’s mineral resources. In addition, Africa also has the world's biggest deposits of precious metals such as gold, cobalt, platinum on earth. Don’t ask me why some of the highest levels of poverty are recorded in Africa.
Thirdly, the richest person who ever lived was from Africa. It's recorded in the annals of history that Mansa Musa 1 who was from the Malian empire in the west of Africa had an estimated wealth of 400 Billion dollars even though some economic historians agree that his wealth is impossible to pin down to a number. He lived during the 14th century and up-to-date no one has surpassed his record of wealth. He made his wealth by overseeing the trade of salt and gold and also from revenue he collected from the vast empire he ruled.
Fourthly, the University of Al-Karaouine, also written as al-Quaraouiyine and al-Qarawiyyin, founded in Morocco in 859 AD, is considered by the Guinness World Records as well as UNESCO as the oldest continuously operating, degree-granting university in the world. Till this day this university still enroll students.
Finally, one of the earliest civilizations started in Ancient Egypt. it is the most famous and admired culture in the world. The pyramids of Giza are among the most renowned symbols of civilization in Ancient Egypt.
So yes Africa has all these unique attributes and have been the first at most prominent happenings in history if you are indeed from a country in Africa or are affiliated to the continent in any way, then just know how privileged and blessed you are to be part of such a powerful continent.
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Blog credits: Stephanie Hiewobea-Nyarko
Editor: Michael Annor-Nyarko