Stemming from a deep desire to rewrite the Africa rising narrative, 272 people from 44 African countries (and the diaspora) founded Africans Rising for Justice, Peace & Dignity, in August last year. Fed up with ineffective leaders who aren’t dealing with the crises on the continent, people are coming together to launch a pan-African solidarity movement. Despite recent financial pledges of support to the economic expansion across the continent of Africa, Africans themselves have been sinking – into deepening inequality, increasing corruption, shrinking civic space and severe environmental issues due to climate change.
We can remind ourselves, our leaders and the world that we are tired of waiting for that liberation to be delivered
Just last Thursday, for instance, more than 250 Nigerian would-be migrants reportedly drowned in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coast as they attempted to cross over to Europe, fleeing a homeland they deemed hopeless. In recent times several African countries, including Kenya and Somalia, have declared drought to be national disasters and simultaneously, it has been reported that millions of people face starvation in southern Africa. It is estimated that the region needs $2.7 billion to feed 23 million people. There are devastating human rights violations happening in many countries including Zimbabwe, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Cameroon and South Africa.
Africans Rising for Justice, Peace & Dignity was founded to launch a pan-African solidarity movement, stemming from a deep desire to rewrite the rising narrative
One of the key aims of the Africans Rising launch is to ensure that #AfricansRising inspires millions of African people to demand good governance as they all work collectively towards common goals of peace, social inclusion and shared prosperity. “We aim to let our leaders know that we have had enough of this unfair and unjust system and we want to make clear our intention to work together, to build a new Africa.” Africans Rising for Justice, Peace & Dignity is officially launching on 25 May.
On 25 May – commonly know as Africa Day and officially as African Liberation Day – there will be a series of actions and events across the continent to mark the launch of the movement. The day was chosen so that “we can remind ourselves, our leaders and the world that we are tired of waiting for that liberation to be delivered. And to show them that we are prepared to take action and hold political and business leaders accountable and reinvigorate the journey to that better life for all.” Although willing to engage in conventional dialogue with governments, the group won’t do so believing that merely meeting with government is going to deliver the necessary changes, quickly enough to improve the lot of the people. The vision is a decentralised, citizen-owned future that finishes the journey of true African liberation, for which so many people laid down their lives in the struggle against colonialism and since. “We refuse to accept that all that blood was spilt for the difficult lives people live every day on the continent. The struggle continues!”
Kumi Naidoo is the launch director of Africans Rising. Follow @kuminaidoo and @AfricansRising on Twitter for updates on the call-to-action and progress with the Liberation Movement.