The most recently Black Lives Matter movement and the Year Of Return heralded by the Ghanaian Government last December has spurred this list of prominent African-Americans whose roots can be traced to Africa.
It is loosely believed that most Black Americans are descendants of slaves that were transported to the United States and Europe during the Transatlantic slave trade era that existed from the 16th to the 19th centuries.
These Celebrities and influential personalities have leveraged on the power of DNA tests to trace their African ancestry as they contract private forensic investigators to dig into their roots.
Below are therefore six American celebrities and big personalities who traced their African ancestries:
1. LeVar Burton (Nigeria)
He is an all-round creative person; an American actor, director, producer, presenter and author. He played the role of Kunta Kinte and won an award for the act. He traced his root to the Hausa people of Nigeria.
2. Anthony Anderson (Cameroon)
Anthony, a top American comedian, discovered his root is from the Bubu people of Bioko island and Tikar and the Hausa and Fulani people of Cameroon.
3. Bishop TD Jakes (Nigeria)
The renowned clergyman is another person who traced his root to Nigeria. He is a descendent of the Igbo people of the Eastern part of Nigeria. He is the bishop of The Potter’s House church.
4. Oprah Winfrey (Liberia, Cameroon, Zambia)
Oprah’s DNA test showed that her ancestors originated in different African countries. The popular TV show host is connected to Kpelle people of Liberia, Bantu people in Zambia, and Bamileke people of Cameroon.
5. Whoopi Goldberg (Guinea-Bissau)
Her DNA test revealed that her ancestors are from the Papel and Bayote people of Guinea-Bissau. She, however, could not go home because of her fear of flying.
Bonus: One of the most sought after actor made the list even though no forensics was done before ascertaining his root.
6. Idris Elba (Ghana, Sierra Leone)
Idris Elba, in full Idrissa Akuna Elba, British actor who was perhaps best known for his work on the television series The Wire and Luther. Elba was born to immigrant working-class parents (his father was from Sierra Leone, and his mother was born in Ghana).