Charlotte Celebrates 27 Years of Sister City Partnership with Kumasi, Ghana at JCSU

The Kumasi Delegation poses with representatives from the city of Charlotte

Charlotte, N.C./Sept. 20, 2022 – Johnson C. Smith University acted as the host location for a celebration honoring the 27th anniversary of Charlotte’s sister city relationship with Kumasi, Ghana.

The gathering, which took place in Grimes Lounge Sept. 19, featured a celebration of the anniversary as well as a reading of an official mayoral proclamation naming Sept. 19, 2022, as Kumasi Day in Charlotte.

“I pledge my commitment to make this relationship a lasting one,” said Kumasi Mayor Samuel Pyne. “I know this relationship will continue to be a win-win situation for the people of Charlotte and the people of Kumasi.”

Dr. Karen D. Morgan, JCSU’s senior vice president of Academic Affairs, welcomed the Kumasi delegation to Johnson C. Smith University.

“For 155 years, JCSU has been a leader in providing educational access to students,” she said. “We will continue that excellence as a pillar in the Charlotte community and beyond. May tonight’s event be only the beginning of future collaborations and partnerships. We look forward to establishing partnerships between Johnson C. Smith University and universities in Ghana.”

Mel Watts, former congressman for the North Carolina 12th District where JCSU is located, originally initiated the relationship with Kumasi, stating that he and other congressmen were looking for a city that mirrored Charlotte. Because Kumasi was a center for textiles in Ghana, Watts and his team quickly developed a relationship that resulted in a Sister City Agreement being signed on Aug. 12, 1995.

“The idea itself came a few years before 1995. We realized the City of Charlotte had never had a sister city relationship with a city in Africa,” he said. “There is a substantial African population here.”

Watts and other members of congress were invited to Kumasi, and he remembers the trip fondly. He says relationships with other countries are important in the pursuit of strengthening democracy.

Pyne and his delegation were presented with certificates of appreciation, and a light reception followed. For more information on Charlotte’s sister city relationship with Kumasi, Ghana, visit