Statement in support of the appeal of Florence Mbahupa Handura
Orignially released 8th December 2022
We the undersigned have come together to express in unison our support for the right to political asylum in the UK of Florence Mbahupa Handura on the condition of the exceptionality and importance of her case to our joint endeavours in pursuit of decolonisation in Afrika, and other colonised parts of the world.
The case of Florence Mbahupa Handura is of global importance. This is because of its historic significance, offering the opportunity of truly acknowledging the need to redress the harms of coloniality and the need in doing so of securing the importance of the right of refugees according to the Vienna Convention.
Given Florence’s role in defence of the Ovaherero communities, their internationally recognised right to self-determination, and their right to reparation, as well as her overall contributions to the global cause of international justice and Pan-Afrikan liberation for Planet Repairs, we, from the Global Majority For Planet Repairs Society and other undersigned organisations, declare our preparedness to be summoned in collaboration in bearing witness and testimony to the grounds of her appeal in court.
We note the exceptionality of Florence’s case and the unique bravery of her stance which confronts the challenge of justice for Ovaherero and Nama people as one which impacts upon many colonised communities throughout the world and also addresses not only states complicit in genocides but their legacies throughout Afrika and the rest of the world such as Germany and other countries in Europe. As one of the indigenous Afrikan champions non-violently challenging the still destructive impact and legacies of the 1884-1885 Berlin Conference upon Afrika, thereby highlighting the need for removing colonial borders and reordering Afrika to embrace plurinational statehood, the work of Florence is seen as threatening also to Governments and states like those of Namibia and others in Southern, Eastern and West Afrika that consider even the very questioning of their colonial borders as a national security threat to their existence punishable in some cases by prosecution for treason. This also reflects the reactionary violence, through persecution, removal of rights, and punishment, met by Florence in her campaigning efforts, and which is reflected in the rejection of her case with the risk this poses to her own life and the security of her family and communities.
We believe that the right to stay is not only a simple application of the Vienna Convention, but also a fact of holistic reparations according to International Law, and a recognition of the rights of Indigenous Ovaherero and Nama to self-determination and freedom from coloniality.
We are strongly convinced that her work on the reparatory justice cause of her own Ovaherero, the Nama, and other marginalised and oppressed communities, not only inside Namibia but also, since coming to the United Kingdom, enhanced by her work with us on genocide, and ecocide and for Planet Repairs to strengthen our common cause in defence of human, peoples’, and Mother Earth rights, have contributed to endangering Florence. We understand this danger to extend to the fact that her return to Namibia under any circumstances will put her at the risk of arrest, torture, imprisonment and even death. We are prepared to elaborate on this in our testimonies to the court when called upon to do so.
Shannique Obunga, Global Majority For Planet Repairs Society, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Esther Stanford-Xosei, Stop the Maangamizi: We Charge Genocide Ecocide Campaign
Kobina Amokwandoh, Majority World Internationalist Solidarity Coordinating Council of Communities of Resistance
Kofi Mawuli Klu, Extinction Rebellion Internationalist Solidarity Network
Marina Xochitl, Global Majority Vs. Campaign
Gail Bradbook, Extinction Rebellion Being the Change Affinity Network
Megan Campbell, Radical Youth Space for Educations
Tobias Müller, Global Exchange for Planet Repairs Action Learning, University of Cambridge
Nils Agger, Forest Rebellion
Robin Ellis-Cockcroft, SISTER (Stroud in Internationalist Solidarity, Together for Earth Repairs)
Tanita J Lewis, Aya Afrikan Learning Community
Kwame Adofo Sampong - Extinction Rebellion UBUNTUNOVISI
Global Majority For Planet Repairs Society (GM4PRS), School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS) Students’ Union,
University of London, 10 Thornhaugh St, London WC1H 0XG GMPlanetRepairsSociety@gmail.com; tel: +44 7737 602 484