US Vice President Kamala Harris plans to visit Ghana, Tanzania, and Zambia, focusing on economic development, climate change, food security, and a rising youth population.
She is scheduled to arrive in Accra, Ghana’s capital, on Sunday.
“For too long, the U.S. foreign policy establishment has treated Africa like some kind of extra credit project and not part of the core curriculum,” Michelle Gavin, an Africa expert at the Council on Foreign Relations and a former U.S. ambassador to Botswana, said.
“I see a big effort to change that thinking now. But it takes time.”
In Africa, Harris will be closely watched as the first person of color and the first woman to serve as America’s vice president. Her mother was born in India and her father was born in Jamaica; Harris was raised in California.
A centerpiece of Harris’ trip will be a speech in Accra and a visit to Cape Coast Castle, where enslaved Africans were once loaded onto ships for the US.
Harris also plans to meet with leaders of each country she visits and lay a wreath to commemorate the 1998 bombing of the US Embassy in Dar es Salaam, the capital of Tanzania.
She is set to visit a recording studio and meet women entrepreneurs in Accra, and stop by a technology incubator in Dar es Salaam.
In Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, The vice president is expected to meet with business and philanthropists to talk about expanding access to digital and financial systems.
The trip includes three nights in Ghana, two nights in Tanzania, and one in Zambia before Harris returns to Washington on April 2.