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Enough is Enough! Time for organized African resistance across the UK!

Photography by Delroy Constantine-Simms

 

 


Enough is Enough March for Black Justice and Black Unity! End police brutality and State imposed postcode beef!


On Saturday November 12, 2011, some 50 protesters assembled at Windrush Square to participate in the "Enough is Enough March for Black Justice and Black Unity."


The march, which International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (InPDUM) specifically organized, marked ten years since the Brixton police murder of 25-year-old Brixton resident Ricky Bishop.


Also, we remembered Peckham’s own 21-year-old Demetre Fraser, who the West Midland’s police brutally murdered in Birmingham five months ago. The march unapologetically called for an end to direct State brutality and State imposed postcode beef.


The march left Windrush Square and made its way down Brixton Road, chanting slogans like, “Put Cameron in cuffs! Enough is Enough!”, “No justice, no peace, until the police are off our streets”, and “Free Chelsea Ives" (one of the protesters slandered by the British media for her stance against the police, and was just sentenced to two years in prison three days earlier on November 9) and "Jail the Killer cops” amongst other slogans.


Some observers were shocked by the fact that the slogans were directed at Labour party politicians as well as Conservative ones, as the Labour party in the UK has generally become accepted by many as the mainstream party, which represents the interests of African people.


InPDUM rejected this concept and stated, “We see no significant difference between the two parties.  When it comes to attacks on the African community they are almost inseparable.”


Despite the police insisting that the protesters would have to march on the pavement, the spirit of African resistance willed the people to defy the police warning and took to the road, slowing down traffic, much to the delight of passersby in Brixton who united with the slogans as protesters passed out fliers to let the community know what the march was about.


Protesters--primarily made up of Africans, but included a small number of white people--were clearly distinguishable on the busy shopping high street, carrying big banners with the names of Africans and other oppressed people who died in custody, as well as other brightly colored political banners and laminate placards.


Africans remembered fallen comrades who were murdered by the State


The march stopped for around ten minutes outside Brixton police station for a moment of silence by what has come to be known as the lynching tree and has become a shrine to those who have been murdered by Brixton police, covered with the pictures of Ricky Bishop and Sean Rigg in particular.


Before the march moved off again up Gresham Road toward Coldharbour Lane, the police again warned protesters not to go in the road and once again the people defied the order.


The police stated that it was unsafe as they could not do traffic management, but the stewards under the leadership of Comrade Karega ‘Earl’ Sara Wiwa made sure that the people were safe from any potential accidents that the road traffic could have caused.


The group marched through three postcodes and smashed through the border boundaries of Lambeth and Southwark boroughs, in recognition of the universality of State oppression against the African community.


The State failed to stop Africans from marching


On approaching the intersection at Camberwell from Cold Harbour Lane the police indicated that there was an ambulance that needed to get through.


Not wanting to prevent anyone from receiving medical assistance, the stewards ushered the march toward the side of the road in order to allow the ambulance to pass, but while buses and private vehicles all passed, there were no sirens or any other indication that an ambulance needed to get through.


It appeared that this had been some kind of police strategy to prevent the people from marching any further using the road, but this plan was foiled once again as the march resumed, boldly going through the traffic lights at the junction and then turning into the final straight toward Peckham.


The protesters gathered steam as people came to the windows of their flats and cheered them on.


People on buses clamored at the windows to get fliers and cars drove by tooting their horns in support, inspiring the marches' chants to get even louder.


The demonstration, which had started with some 50 participants at its height, was estimated to have had somewhere in the area of 100 people and independent observers claim there may have been somewhere in the region of 200 people gathered outside the Brixton police station for the moment of silence.


InPDUM honors fellow Africans for show of force


The march ended with a rally at Peckham Square and featured moving presentations from Josette Fraser (mother of Demetre Fraser AKA T. Dot), Doreen Bishop (mother of Ricky Bishop), Stephanie Lightfoot Bennet (twin sister of Leon Patterson), and Geary Whickam (brother in-law of Kingsley Burrell). 


Apologies and salutes were sent from Janet Alder (sister of Christopher Alder) and the family of Sean Rigg, as they were unable to be there in person.


Presentations were also made from supporting organizations, by SG Vibes on behalf of Galaxy Radio, Minkah Adofo on behalf of the Pan Afrikan Society Community Forum, and Ricky J on behalf of charity Sharplook.


Secretary-General Luwezi Kinshasa of the African Socialist International (ASI) made the final presentation of the evening, highlighting the need for the African community to build organizational capacity. He gave examples of how this was happening on an international level through the ASI, with the Uhuru Movement’s basic principle of "Touch one! Touch all!", which means that attacks on Africans in one place, e.g. the UK, will meet a response from Africans worldwide.


InPDUM would like to thank all who supported and attended the event, giving particular recognition to those who volunteered as stewards, to Jack Ruben for donating a sound system to the event (which unfortunately did not get used due to technical problems with InPDUM’s Generator), to Osagyefo Tongogara (Free Mumia Defense Campaign UK) for providing his megaphone as a backup, to SG Vibes for providing logistical support with his van on the march, to Louise Hutchinson, who was very active in promoting the event on Facebook and to the various media that gave the event coverage beforehand. 


InPDUM would also like to recognize the great efforts of Josette Fraser in connecting with all the various media, giving interviews and making sure the event got any extra promotion that was possible right up to the last few hours.


Enough is Enough set to return. Call for reparations and resistance grows


Despite many logistical contradictions, the "Enough is Enough March for Black Justice and Black Unity" was a resounding success and came at a time that was much needed in the African community. 


InPDUM stood at the forefront in the midst of the Black August Rebellions, holding rallies in Brixton and Peckham to defend the protesters stance and provide much needed political education in the community about what was happening and why, under the slogan "Resistance is the future." 


Unknown to InPDUM at the time, Josette Fraser had planned for a march in remembrance of her son, Demetre (see article InPDUM condemns the murder of Demetre Fraser by West Midlands Police) to take place on Saturday August 13, which would have been just three or four days after the rebellions had ended. 


The State was very obviously scared about such a march occurring in the context of those recent deadly attacks and deployed its neocolonial sell out forces to discourage the march from going ahead, as it knew that it would directly contradict the pro police propaganda that was being pumped night and day through all mainstream media in the country, and imperialist media around the world.


They failed to curb the tide of resistance. The day to day work to build a real movement for African self-determination continues. 


Knowing that marches by themselves are not a solution,here is what  justice looks like for Ricky Bishop and Demetre Fraser:


1.    The immediate arrest and custodial remand of all officers present at the scenes of the murders as well as former Lambeth borough commander, Brian Paddick and former Birmingham West and Central commander, Chris McKeogh, pending a murder trial.


2.    Reparations to the families of Demetre Fraser and Ricky Bishop for emotional stress and turmoil.


3.    Immediate press conference featuring retractions of all slanderous statements made by the British media about these two victims of state murder.


4.    Immediate withdrawal of colonial police presence in the African community and all funds saved from this action to be placed into economic development programs to be decided and organized by the African community.


This will not be the last Enough is Enough march, and there have already been indications that the march should take place in different corners of London as well as cities across the UK!


If you are sick and tired of being sick and tired and want to be a part of this work, join InPDUM today and let’s resist!


All power to the people! Black power to the African community!


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