Omali Yeshitela, founder and chairman of the African People's Socialist Party (Courtesy photo)
Omali Yeshitela, founder and chairman of the African People's Socialist Party (Courtesy photo)

People of African descent across the world will commemorate the 1963 founding of the Organization of African Unity this weekend during African Liberation Day, an occasion that allows for deep study and reflection on the degree to which the goal of a unified, fully self-determined Pan-African society has been realized.

For members of the African People’s Socialist Party (APSP), various gatherings on May 25 and 26 provide an opportunity to market their organization as a key engineer of a global revolution that has and can continue to organize the Black working class against bourgeoisie and white imperialist interests.

“History is not something we experience and do so on our own terms and record it. There are frequently times when doors and windows are opened,” APSP Chairman and Founder Omali Yeshitela told audience members during his analysis of modern-day imperialism on a May 19 #OmaliTaughtMe livestream.

Yeshitela and African Socialist International Secretary General Luwezi Kinshasa count among the speakers for the APSP’s African Liberation Day celebration, themed “Africa for the Africans: At Home and Abroad: Death to White Imperialist Power!”

On Saturday morning, participants will pound the pavement during a march that starts at Anacostia Metro Station in Southeast. Gatherings at Union Temple Baptist Church in Southeast on Saturday and the Stuart Center in Northeast on Sunday will also feature Michael Africa Junior, Yejide Orunmila of the African Women’s National Organization (ANWO), and other speakers who will provide pieces to a blueprint for a modern-day revolution.

“We have to seize those times and move through those doors and windows if we’ll be successful within the period of to time we’re trying to make this revolution,” Yeshitela continued in in his broadcast on May 19, the 94th anniversary of Malcolm X’s birth. “The African People’s Socialist Party is the vehicle through which the revolution has to be made.”

APSP’s event counts among several African Liberation Day functions taking place around the District, including the Mass Emphasis Children’s History & Theatre Company’s production about Malcolm X, Patrice Lumumba, and Frantz Fanon at St.Stephen and the Incarnation Church in Northwest. In response to economic sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe, members of the December 12th Movement will lead a protest from the African-American Civil War Memorial to the White House.

APSP workshops at Union Temple Baptist Church and the Stuart Center this weekend will highlight various issues affecting African people, including disaster relief and reparations, and the work ANWO has done since 1972 in those areas. Another topic of concern involves Black mothers, a group that Orunmila said must be supported by the greater collective.

“Women join us all the time in our movement,” said Orunmila, ANWO president since 2015. “We want all of our people to be free and we work very hard to deal with any backward notion that men or women bring so that we can be stronger organizers for our people.

“There are a lot of real-world things that keep women from joining,” she said. “If they’re mothers, they don’t have time to join an organization. We want to make sure our mothers aren’t left out, so that requires us to support them while they become great organizers.”

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Sam P.K. Collins

Sam P.K. Collins has more than a decade of experience as a journalist, columnist and organizer. Sam, a millennial and former editor of WI Bridge, covers education, police brutality, politics, and other...

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