A group of Americans, who traced their roots to Sierra Leone through DNA, touched down at the Lungi International Airport on Tuesday 23rd April 2019.
They were received with pomp and pageantry in a traditional Sierra Leonean style courtesy of the Government of Sierra Leone.
The group visited the immigration department to start the formalities of becoming Sierra Leoneans.
They were taken on a tour of Freetown and they visited the iconic Cotton tree where the first set of freed slaves (the Black Poors) that returned to Sierra Leone visited in May 1787.
It was a very emotional scene as the oldest woman in the group Prof. Wanda Cousar poured libations, offered prayers and made vows to support the country one way or another.
They are scheduled to meet with the President at some point during their stay for the declaration ceremony.
Over the years Sierra Leone has welcome groups of African Americans whose roots are from the country.
Ancestry DNA has enabled African Americans to trace back their roots in Africa and help them build relations with their ancestral land.
Prominent actor and philanthropist Isaiah Washington also found out through DNA analysis that his roots traced back to Sierra Leone where he has since contributed in local philanthropy.
They still call themselves “Temnes,” and they celebrate their heritage with a Temne song, dance, and drum routine handed down for centuries. Several times a year they proudly display these vestiges of their African past as part of a dramatic traditional performance called the “Big Drum Dance.”