Manifesto

MY SAVAGE PAST

I embrace the cannibals and the savages. I embrace the child soldiers and the dictators. I embrace rapist and survivor alike. I celebrate the past and the present. I embrace torturer and the tortured because Steve Biko is dead and he won't be coming back.

I despise both white and black because Malcom X is dead and he wont have a second coming. Fela Kuti and Bob Marley are dead, Martin Luther King is dead. Patrice Lumumba will not be coming back to judge the living and the dead Mobutus. Samora Machel, Sankara, Ken Saro Wiwa, Nyerere, Nkruma, Haile Sellase, Marcus Garvey, Senghor are dead, Fanon is dead. We have no more need for messiahs there will be no more messiahs the only messiah is you.

I embrace the dope fiends, bandit queens, drag queens and shebeen queens because the Rain queen is dead and she has no heir.

I denounce the patriarch and the matriarch alike. None of the sheroic deeds of warrior queens dead or alive can save your sorry ass. Not the brilliance of Josephine Baker, not the majesty of Sojourner Truth, Nawaal al Sadawi, not the courage of Queen Nzinga and Sarawuti.

And how can we forget those self-destructive warriors from Huey P Newton to Winnie Mandela and all those saviours turned despots who despite their intellect, charm, and courage betrayed themselves and the hopes of all wretched generations to come.

Africa is somehow always in need of saving. Out of this a whole range of machines and factories have sprung up. The Hope industry, the Future Factory. If Africa was not such a basket case what would we write about, hold conferences over, make exhibitions to highlight, make art to challenge and rock concerts to fight.

This is my Manifesto. Not that I always live by it but a manifesto in any case.

Simba Sambo