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Race and History Forum

African freedom fighter on U.S. tour

Sierra Leone Freedom Fighter on U.S. Tour, March-April, 2006

Bring activist, journalist, former child soldier Chernoh Alpha Bah as a speaker to your campus or community.

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Former child soldier and award-winning journalist imprisoned for exposing human rights violations in the treatment of West African refugees, Chernoh Alpha Bah will be on a North American tour March and April, 2006. The theme of the tour is, “Diamond wars, child soldiers and the worldwide movement for African liberation.”

Representative of a whole generation of young Africans who have grown up in the midst of war, turmoil and terror, Chernoh at 27 is a middle-aged man in a country whose average life expectancy is less than 40 years.

At twelve Chernoh was forced into the Sierra Leone army as one of the infamous child soldiers. Along with thousands of other children Chernoh was made to fight in the deadly civil war that devastated the country in the 1990s. Although Sierra Leone is diamond and mineral-rich, the majority of the people subsist on a dollar a day.

Before he was 20 Chernoh organized the Awareness Movement of Sierra Leone, edited The Point newspaper and was forced into exile in Guinea-Conakry where he became a political prisoner.

At 21 Chernoh founded the Africanist Movement, which is today based in eight countries of West Africa. The Africanist Movement recently voted to join with the effort led by the Uhuru Movement to build the African Socialist International, the worldwide movement to unify and liberate Africa.

While significant movements for liberation are growing in Latin America and in the Arab world, Africa is still portrayed as a case for charity or “live aid” from white people. Chernoh’s passionate message tells us that despite media white-outs, the struggle for unification and liberation on the richest yet most impoverished continent in the world is still going on. Chernoh represents the struggles embodied by Marcus Garvey, Kwame Nkrumah, Patrice Lumumba and Malcolm X that are continuing today.

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