Dr. Maulana Karenga’s Message Focus on Freedom, Justice and Peace

Today, December 26, 2022, is the first day of Kwanzaa, Pan-African communities’ cultural celebration of African and African-American heritage and culture. For the next 7 days, observers of Kwanzaa honor the Seven Principles (Nguzo Saba) which are: Unity, Self-Determination, Collective Work and Responsibility, Cooperative Economics, Purpose, Creativity, and Faith. Founder of the celebrations, African American Dr. Maulana Karenga shared his message on Thursday.

Again, this year we wish for Africans everywhere throughout the world African community “Heri za Kwanzaa. Happy Kwanzaa.” And we bring and send greetings of celebration, solidarity and continued struggle for an inclusive and shared good in the world. 

Dr. Karenga created Kwanzaa in 1966 during the Black Freedom Movement, in the wake of the the assassination of Malcolm X and the Watts Revolt to encourage cultural revolution, community self-determination, and revolutionary social change. The 3 objectives of the 7-day holiday are to

  • Reaffirm and restore African heritage and culture
  • To introduce and reinforce the Nguzo Saba
  • To serve as a nationally celebrated communal and non-heroic holiday

Kwanzaa is commonly celebrated in certain African American communities from December 26, 2022, until January 1, 2022. It is a time where people adorn African-themed dress, and gather for cultural themed events, music, poetry, arts and crafts open markets. This year’s Kwanzaa theme focuses on the significance of Kwanzaa and its principles in the context of freedom, justice, and peace.

“Also, in the still-held-high tradition of our ancestors, we wish for African peoples and all the peoples of the world all the good that heaven grants, the earth produces, and the waters bring forth from their depths. Hotep. Ase. Heri.” said Dr. Karenga.


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