Congolese, Pan Africanists and people of goodwill throughout the globe have launched a campaign to declare January 17th, as Lumumba Day. Prime Minister, Patrice Lumumba, Sports and Youth Minister, Joseph Okito and the vice-president of the Senate, Maurice Mpolo were assassinated on January 17, 1961.
Colonial and imperialist forces in cahoots with Congolese elites, conspired to overthrow and subsequently assassinate Congo’s first democratically elected Prime Minister.
Lumumba was singled out for a particularly brutal and pernicious murder. He was gunned down by firing squad, followed by the dismemberment of his body which was later dissolved in acid. One of the Belgian soldiers responsible for dissolving Lumumba’s body parts, took one of his teeth as a trophy.
The intent of the forces involved such as Belgium, United States and the United Nations was to erase Lumumba and the leadership of his nationalist and Pan Africanist government from memory. Generations later, Congolese youth, Africans, Pan Africanists, working class and oppressed people throughout the globe have declared that although Lumumba’s physical body was extinguished, his ideas, teachings and spirit will live forever.
Lumumba’s call for self-sufficiency, self-determination and African Liberation has been embraced by a new generation of Congolese and Africans. People throughout the globe are responding to the declaration that Lumumba made in his letter to his wife Pauline while in captivity, when he wrote “We are not alone. Africa, Asia and free and liberated people from every corner of the world will always be found at the side of the Congolese.”
We appeal to justice seeking and peace loving people throughout the world to commemorate January 17th each year as “Lumumba Day” by taking any or all of the following actions:
A. Securing a resolution from your organization or government declaring January 17th as Lumumba Day
B. Screening a film on Lumumba
C. Sharing information about Lumumba on social media
D. Participating in a Lumumba Commemoration event
E. Supporting Congolese and African youth carrying on the Pan African ideals and legacy of Lumumba