The International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (InPDUM) has answered the clarion call to defend the African People’s Socialist Party (APSP). On July 29, 2022, the APSP and Uhuru Movement sustained the most significant attack against the African Liberation Movement since the military defeat of the African Revolution of the 1960s, commonly known as the Black Power Movement.
Over 30 years ago, InPDUM was formed to defend the African community from the counterinsurgent war waged against the African Liberation Movement and bring the masses of African people back into political life. InPDUM understands that self-determination is the highest form of democracy.
At the founding convention for InPDUM—then named the National People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (NPDUM)—on April 6, 1991, in Chicago, Illinois, Chairman Omali Yeshitela mandated that NPDUM must organize mass campaigns “in defense of the national democratic rights of our people and, as part of the process to expose the U.S. counterinsurgency leading to the abrogation of many of those democratic rights, will shatter the democratic facade of the colonialist white ruling class State.”
InPDUM has embraced the Hands Off Uhuru! Hands Off Africa! Counteroffensive (HOU), in defense of The Party. The HOU campaign organized more than 100 events in the year since the attack. InPDUM has played a valiant role in the defense. This article looks at some of our accomplishments over the years and plans the way forward for the 2023-2024 political year.
Change, growth since the last convention
Matsemela Odom was appointed as the newest InPDUM President at the InPDUM Convention in St. Louis in September 2022. InPDUM’s mission has been recruitment, branch building, and campaign development. Within days of the convention, Comrade Fyc of New York texted Matsemela and asked if the Africans Charge Genocide (ACG) campaign had concluded. Fyc had attempted to visit the ACG website but received an error message.
The FBI, under the guise of Change.org, attacked InPDUM and forcibly disappeared upwards of 130,000 signatures of international support for our campaign from the internet. Subsequent research shows that the FBI launched this attack against InPDUM in the weeks leading to our convention. They tried to scrub the internet of any presence of InPDUM’s leading campaign in an attempt to rewrite history.
However, the internet is forever. Diligent research allowed us to recover visual evidence of our website. As well, thousands of international comments of support for our petition were recovered. These comments are being published for the world to see.
The ACG Campaign formally goes back to 2015. It pulled the historic struggle to charge the U.S. with genocide against African people from the grasps of purely legislative debates and put it in the hands of the African working class.
For all practical purposes, this campaign actually goes back to 1991. At the founding convention in 1991, Chairman Omali Yeshitela stated, “The NPDUM must initiate a democratic counteroffensive against the U.S. counterinsurgency. We must file international and U.S.-based suits against the U.S., charging it with violation of the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.”
On April 29, 2023, InPDUM organized a panel on the genocide of mass imprisonment in front of a UN panel of experts in Los Angeles. The next day, in Chicago, Kabula Mutombo testified in front of the UN panel of experts about the U.S. government’s assault against the Uhuru Movement.
From May 30 to June 2, President Matsemela and New Jersey InPDUM member and Black is Back Coalition Vice-Chair Lisa Davis attended the UN Permanent Forum on People of African Descent (PFPAD). The Women’s All-Points Bulletin included the demand to defend the Uhuru Movement in their official report to the PFPAD.
Local branches answered the call
InPDUM has embraced the regional strategy of the African People’s Socialist Party. InPDUM has regional coordinators that have aided our growth throughout the U.S. and around the world.
In October and November 2022, InPDUM organized a Get on the Bus Campaign, answering the call to bring people to the Black is Back Coalition’s Black People’s March on the White House. That is where we met Comrade Izayah of Illinois who has started the process of growing our presence in Springfield, Illinois.
InPDUM is located in 75 cities and 25 states of North America. InPDUM is located in at least seven countries around the world, including Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Namibia, and England.
We have expanded our membership inside the colonial prisons and renamed our incarcerated membership to represent the impact on African men and women. It is now called George Jackson-Dessie Woods.
Coming out of the 2023 convention, we have the goal of purchasing a permanent organizing center in Kokosi, South Africa (the site of the 2023 InPDUM South Africa Pre-Convention Conference).
Too many events to list
InPDUM branches have held a host of events too long to list in this article. On October 28, 2023, Comrade Oronde of InPDUM New York spoke for HOU at a rally on the FBI Harassment of Cuba Solidarity Brigade in Puerto Rico.
From California to New York to South Africa, InPDUM branches organized Martin Luther King, Jr. Days of Action in January 2023. In February 2023, we organized African Martyrs Day teach-ins. In March, InPDUM organized Black Power Weekend in Alabama.
On Saturday March 4, we organized Mafundi Lake Day in Birmingham and did outreach at the Bloody Sunday commemoration in Selma on Sunday March 5. We returned in defense of the Uhuru Movement as part of the Regions Bank Protests.
On April 15, we held a packed HOU event called “Building Black Power in Brownsville” in Brooklyn. In May, we organized African Liberation Day and May 27 Day of Action events alongside the Party and the HOU Campaign. We organized Not Yet Uhuru Juneteenth mobilizations including one at the MLK Monument in Boston and did outreach in the rain at the International African Arts Festival.
In 2023-2024, we will deepen the counteroffensive
In St. Louis, InPDUM organizes weekly Black Power Sunday Rallies, and, virtually, we hold weekly RNDP Studies to bring the Revolutionary National Democratic Program to the people.
Following the murders of Tyre Nichols in Memphis, TN and Nahel Merzouk in France, our weekly studies brought the revolutionary demand of Black Community Control of the Police to the masses.
InPDUM London is currently organizing the Hands Off Chenniah campaign as an anti-colonial pushback against the genocidal process of gentrification.
At the 2023 InPDUM Convention, we will discuss what it means to deepen the counteroffensive. This has been a splendid year of growth and organization. Now we are intent on opening offices and growing membership and branches. That is how we will complete the Black Power Movement and win.