Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 6th 2016 Contents A30
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Trinidad-born Black revolutionary
Kwame Ture continues to inspire not
only the African diaspora but people
everywhere who fight for social jus-
tice, said Dr Lisa Aubrey, associate
professor of African and African
American Studies, Arizona State Uni-
"Kwame is a son of global Africa,
that young man who was born in Bel-
mont. He fought for justice and stood
for pan-Africanism," Aubrey said,
speaking at the launch of the 2016
Kwame Ture Memorial Lecture Series
at the Central Bank Auditorium, Port-
of-Spain, on June 26.
The lecture was titled Emancipa-
tion---Celebrating the Resilience of a
People. It was hosted by the Emanci-
pation Support Committee. Special
guests included National Security Min-
ister Edmund Dillon, other Government
officials and members of the diplomatic
Dr Aubrey spent over a week in T&T
meeting with the African diaspora here
and visited Ture s birthplace.
Ture, who was born in 1941, moved
to the United States at age 11 and took
part in the 1960s civil rights movement
in the USA, and later the global pan-
After a decades-long ban, he returned
to Trinidad in 1996 and was warmly
welcomed by former prime minister
Dr Aubrey called Ture a "dear friend"
and an "extraordinary human being,"
and shared memories when they first
met in the early 1980s.
"I cherish the moment I had with
him and the memories. I remember
clearly when I met him in 1984 in
Columbus, Ohio, when he came to deliv-
er a lecture much related to organising
and mobilising. He was organising for
the All African People s Revolutionary
Party. Our friendship lasted until he
joined the ancestors in 1998," she said.
Aubrey said Ture fought for justice,
equality, truth and community of
African people worldwide.
She also said he inspired her as a
young woman to find her way in the
world and to look for meaning in the
"He inspired me to fight for people
of African descent. We are one people,
we are one global African people."
She described his journey from his
birth in Belmont, Trinidad, to Harlem,
then to the Bronx in the United States,
and said from his early years he was
Last Thursday, Aubrey visited Ture s
house of birth in Belmont and said she
felt proud to visit the historical begin-
nings of such a great man.
She also commented: "Trinbagonians
are African to the bone."
Dr Aubrey is a scholar in Black slavery
and the trans-Atlantic slave trade and
is a Fulbright scholar (2014-15) based
at the University of Yaounde I,
During Sunday night s lecture, she
gave details on Maafa or the African
Holocaust. Maafa is a Swahili term
meaning "great tragedy" and it refers
to the death and suffering of Africans
as a result of the slave trade.
During the question-and-answer
segment, local African elder and activist
Garth Nicholas asked her how many
people she thought had died during
this holocaust. She replied by referring
to Black American scholar WEB Du
Bois, who estimated that at least 100
million people died in Africa and aboard
the slave ships headed for the Americas.
She drew on her academic expertise
and personal experience to address the
profound significance of Africans in
the diaspora reconnecting with their
African roots in the heritage lands of
Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana and other
Aubrey has done extensive work in
archives in many countries researching
the trade of African slaves. As part of
this research, she was able to trace
nearly 200 slave ships voyages that
left Cameroon in the 17th, 18th and
19th centuries, bound for plantations
in the Americas, including three ships
In a media release from the Eman-
cipation Support Committee, its chair-
man, Khafra Khambon, said: "She is
playing an important role in exposing
at a personal level a painful history
which has had spiritual and economic
impact, and which has also demon-
strated a phenomenal resilience reflected
in the tremendous achievements of
many of our people globally."
Ture fought for justice,
equality for Africans
Iconic Trinidad-born civil rights activist Kwame Ture.
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