In honoring Ota Benga, we focus our efforts on the need to treat each other with dignity, with respect for cultural diversity as a source of strength, and with truth as a foundation for genuine reconciliation to end the cycles of violence, vengeance, and militarism. We believe that peace and dignity cannot be achieved while the injustices of the past and present are buried in silence, and while the struggles of the present go unheard.
(c) Mumia Abu Jamal
Find out more about Ota Benga
Welcome! We are the Ota Benga Alliance for Peace, Healing and Dignity in the D.R. Congo and beyond, located in Berkeley, California and Kinshasa, D.R. Congo.
Who was Ota Benga? A Congolese man, brought to the United States to be exhibited at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. He was an Mbuti (a pygmy), about 4 feet 8 inches tall, put on display at the Fair’s Hall of Man along with an exotic collection of indigenous peoples from all over the world. Ota Benga was exhibited next to a group of Native Americans that included Geronimo. read more »
Your Excellencies, Mr. Ambassadors,
I would have liked to begin my speech with the usual formulation, "I have the honour and privilege of taking the floor before you."
Alas! The women victims of sexual violence in Eastern DRC are in dishonor. I constantly with my own eyes see the elder women, the young girls, the mothers and even the babies dishonored.
Still today, many are subjected to sexual slavery; others are used as a weapon of war. Their organs are exposed to the most abhorrent ill-treatment. read more »
Par Freddy Mulongo--Vendredi 26 octobre 2012. Un gouvernement responsable protège tous ses citoyens. Et il veuille à ce que l'élite du pays ne soit pas décapiter. Or que voyons-nous en République démocratique du Congo, on tue, on assassine, on zigpouille l'élite congolaise: activistes des droits de l'homme, journalistes, acteurs politiques de l'opposition. read more »
Dear Mr. Nxumalo, Mayor of Durban, South Africa
I have been informed that you are trying to be helpful to the poor, by way of being charitable, and sensitizing richer people to donate whatever they can to improve the conditions under which the poor live. From what is being reported, it does seem that you are not interested in listening to what the poor themselves are saying with regard to deal with their living conditions. read more »
Like many people, I was surprised to hear of Edward Snowden’s decision to leave his job and move toward Hong Kong in search of a place where he could reconcile his conscience with his understanding of humanity and the US Constitution. Ever since, I have been trying to understand how he had come to a decision that, one may be certain, others contemplated, but then did not pursue for reasons that are not important, at this point, to figure out. read more »
This letter should have been written a long time ago because there have been too many instances when I remained silent when speaking up in solidarity with AbahlaliBaseMjondolo was what my conscience was telling me to do. The excuses for the silence are the usual ones: nowadays it is impossible to respond to calls for solidarity coming from too many members of humanity, worldwide, being threatened, assaulted, criminalized, killed for simply saying they must be treated with respect, dignity, justice. read more »
It has been pointed out that the assassination of Amilcar Cabral marked the end of a sequence of history (Michael Neocosmos) namely the end of politics through armed struggles. In the process of thinking and re-thinking the legacy of Amilcar Cabral is it possible to say anything that has not been already said, either by himself, or by those who have written about him? Is it possible to go beyond just citing words and/or phrases that reconnect to his vision of an emancipated Africa? read more »