If you’re interested in buying land in Ghana, Garvey Town might be for you. Garvey Town is a self-sustaining Pan-African community about an hour outside of Accra, Ghana. The subdivision is being constructed by the organization Africans for the Africa, which is spearheaded by Bomani Tyehimba, and Garadina Gamba.
The development is looking for 300 families to purchase land plots; currently 21 pieces of land have been sold in the area. Land plots are $940 for a 70 X 100 size lot, and is located about 7 miles from the beach.
“People can own without the banks being involved,” said Tyehimba, the organization's director and a former Delta Airlines employee, who currently runs the organization from his Atlanta home.
Tyehimba got involved in the project in 2004 after growing weary of the rampant racial discrimination in America. “The system (U.S.) has no respect for you (African-Americans). You have to realize it’s not you; it’s the system, and at the end of the day, it’s racism. We as a people should be frustrated by this.”
Africans espouse the belief that land belongs to the people, as a result, plots are leased and not purchased. Ghanaians are offered land for 99 years, while non-Ghanaians can occupy land for 50 years with a renewable lease at the end of the term. When asked about the fact that Americans might take issue with the idea of not owning the land outright, Tyehima said purchasers have to become comfortable with the land acquisition philosophy in the country. Just as western countries have their own land ideologies such as banks holding home titles until a piece of property is paid off.
“You have to be willing to give-up something to get something. You may be giving up the American infrastructure, but what you receive (here) is peace of mind, and an escape from the chaos and violence seen in America as well as reliance on whites educating your children,” he said. “In Ghana there’s community and people talk to you.”
Many Americans have real concerns regarding scams and illegitimate land deals. Tyehima said all transactions are documented and recorded with the office of registry. “You can never go wrong with documentation. People need to use their brains and do their own research,” he added.
What makes buying into a system like Garvey Town desirable is that it provides a support base for Diasporas. Africa’s system is different from America and other western countries. Ghana is built on families and community. In Africa, it’s difficult to navigate the country individually. One needs support and relationships to be successful, which is what advocates with Africans for the African hopes communities like Garvey Town will provide.