Endorse the Black Power campaigns of Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum and Ticharwa Masimba

Elikya Ngoma, Secretary, Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations 

Uhuru (Freedom)!

On behalf of the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations, we would like to announce our official endorsement of Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum for Ward 3 Alderpersonand Ticharwa Masimba for Ward 21 Alderperson, in St. Louis, Missouri.

On Saturday, October 24, 2020, the Black is Back Coalition’s Steering Committee voted and united to endorse these two Black Power candidates, who have both adopted the National Black Political Agenda for Self-Determination—the 19-Point Platform developed by the Black is Back Coalition.

Bentum’s campaign slogan “Revolutionary Times! Revolutionary Solutions!” and Masimba’s campaign slogan “Black is Back!” both speak to their aims to unify the black community of St. Louis for a cultural and economic revitalization.

From the fires of Ferguson to revolutionary leadership

Omali Yeshitela, Chairman of the African People’s Socialist Party (APSP) and Chair of the Black is Back Coalition, traveled to St. Louis after seeing the response of the black community and the mass resistance that took place after the police murder of 18-year old Michael “Mike” Brown.

As a Ferguson resident, Bentum was forced outside of her home for “fresh air” due to the amounts of tear gas being thrown at protesters by the St. Louis police. 

This was her introduction to Chairman Omali Yeshitela, who was providing political education to the black community forces in the street. 

Bentum began to understand why the black community continues to face police murder, as well as other conditions that plague our community, such as mass imprisonment, horizontal violence, gentrification and poverty.

Bentum signed up to be a part of the Uhuru Movement and became a member of the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (InPDUM), which is now an organizational branch of the Coalition.

She was a part of the Black People Grand Juryto indict the imperialist State’s grand jury process for their non-indictment of Darren Wilson, which was hosted by InPDUM on January 3rd and 4th, 2015.

Bentum remained loyal to the black community and has since become a leader of the Uhuru Movement. She has been a key organizer in sustaining the continued presence of the Uhuru Movement in St. Louis.

Today, she serves as the International President of InPDUM and represents InPDUM on the Black is Back Coalition’s Steering Committee.

Beyond ‘Black Lives Matter’: the revolutionary work of the Black Power Blueprint

On August 22, 2018, St. Louis, Missouri resident Ticharwa Masimba joined the African People’s Socialist Party and was assigned to the Office of the Deputy Chair, Ona Zéné Yeshitela.

He would eventually quit his colonial job to become the Economic Director of Black Star Industries(BSI), an offshoot of the African People’s Education and Defense Fund (APEDF),.

He played a critical role in securing the location forthe Uhuru House, currently stationed in North St. Louis, at 4101 West Florissant, and serving as an organizational hub for the surrounding black community.

Masimba would become the voice for the APSP, APEDF and BSI at the neighborhood association meetings he would attend. He would also stand up for the black community in the face of the U.S. government’sNational Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) construction in St. Louis.

Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum and Ticharwa Masimba understood that the NGA was a plan created to crush the spirit of resistance sparked in St. Louis and facilitate gentrification.

Ticharwa Masimba was assigned to be the Project Director of the Black Power Blueprint, the revolutionary and anti-colonial front of the African People’s Socialist Party, to build self-determination for the black community of North St. Louis. 

Under his leadership, the Black Power Blueprint purchased properties and projected plans to build the Gary Brooks Community Garden, Uhuru Jiko Kitchen and other revitalization projects.

Revolutionary leaders embrace revolutionary politics

Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum and Ticharwa Masimba are students of the Black is Back Coalition’s Electoral Campaign Schools—where we teach ordinary black people how to run for office on platforms that speak to the interests of our people and what to look for in a candidate’s platform.

Bentum attended the first Electoral Campaign School, held on April 8th and 9th, 2017 in St. Petersburg, Florida, and each one thereafter. Masimba attended the second Electoral Campaign School, held on April 7th through 9th, 2018 in St. Louis, Missouri, and all that have followed.

With an understanding of the electoral process and its many voter suppression tactics, such as gerrymandering and ward reduction, both candidates participated in St. Louis’s #Keep28 campaign to keep 28 wards, standing in opposition to the planned reduction to 14 wards.

Bentum and Masimba have decided to take another step in leading the black community;it is the duty of all freedom-loving black people, and  progressive activists, to help forward the campaigns of these two candidates.

With platforms that speak to reparations to the black community, genuine black economic development, an end to gentrification and Black Community Control of schools, we are certain that Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum for Ward 3 Alderperson and Ticharwa Masimba for Ward 21 Alderperson will bring forth much-needed development in north St. Louis, Missouri.

Visit VoteKalambayi.org and VoteMasimba.org to read more about these two Black Power candidates and their revolutionary campaigns. We are also asking everyone to make a contribution to their campaigns and win others to do the same thing.

We are looking forward to announcing the victories of Herdosia ‘Kalambayi’ Bentum and Ticharwa Masimba!

Uhuru!

Revolutionary Times! Revolutionary Solutions!

Black is Back!

Elikya Ngoma

Secretary, Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations

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