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People at a Black Lives Matter protest rally outside the US Embassy in Dublin following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, US.

African Writers Show Solidarity with Protesting Americans in Open Letter

'We support the protests in the United States and across the world as our people demand justice for any and all racial killings whether by police or civilians,' writes Mona Eltahawy, Mohale Mashigo, Remy Ngamije, Mukoma wa Ngugi and more.

African writers across the continent have shown their solidarity with Americans protesting police brutality in the country with an open letter, Aljazeera reports. The likes of Mona Eltahawy, Mohale Mashigo, Remy Ngamije, Mukoma wa Ngugi, Lola Shoneyin, Zukiswa Wanner, Makanaka Mavengere, Chris Abani and numerous others have all co-signed the letter which fiercely condemns the continued killing of African Americans at the hands of the police and calls on African governments to do much more to address the crisis.


READ: 'Unity Is Strength': African Football Stars Show Support for #JusticeforGeorgeFloyd

Following the death of George Floyd, an unarmed African American man who was killed by white police officers, many Americans have since taken to the streets of Minneapolis to protest the continued police brutality against the Black community. The protests have now spread to other cities including Washington D.C., New York, St. Louis and Chicago with additional demonstrations in countries such as France, England, Australia and New Zealand as shows of solidarity.

Recently, African writers penned an open letter to the African American community as a show of support for the mass protests as well as a call to African governments to do more to seriously address a pandemic that has long preceded even COVID-19––racism.

The letter begins with, "As African writers without borders who are connected beyond geography with those who live in the United States of America and other parts of the African diaspora, we state that we condemn the acts of violence on Black people in the United States of America." The letter then goes on to condemn the killing of numerous African Americans including Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Eric Garner, Michael Brown and Tamir Rice.

The writers acknowledge the statement released by the African Union with regards to the protests but insist that it is not enough. Additionally, they call on African governments to offer "those who choose it: refuge, homes and citizenship in the name of pan-Africanism." Read the full open letter here.

While some Africans, including South African rapper AKA, have called on Africans to "return home", many others have rightly argued that America is their home and that they should not have to "return to Africa" as if they aren't rightful citizens with as many legitimate rights as their white counterparts.

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The Year Is 2020 & the Future of Nigeria Is the Youth

We discuss the strength in resolve of Nigeria's youth, their use of social media to speak up, and the young digital platforms circumventing the legacy media propaganda machine. We also get first-hand accounts from young creatives on being extorted by SARS and why they believe the protests are so important.

In the midst of a pandemic-rife 2020, the voices of African youth have gotten louder in demand for a better present and future. From structural reforms, women's rights, LGBTQ rights, and derelict states of public service, the youths have amplified their voices via the internet and social media, to cohesively express grievances that would hitherto have been quelled at a whisper.

Nigerian youth have used the internet and social media to create and sustain a loud voice for themselves. The expression of frustration and the calls for change may have started online, but it's having a profound effect on the lives of every Nigerian with each passing day. What started as the twitter hashtag #EndSARS has grown into a nationwide youth revolution led by the people.

Even after the government supposedly disbanded the SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) unit on the 10th of October, young Nigerians have not relented in their demands for better policing. The lack of trust for government promises has kept the youth protesting on the streets and online.

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