×

Nomzamo Stands in Solidarity with Sudanese Protests – and Why We All Need to do the Same

There’s an Internet blackout and 80 women have been raped.

Actress, activist and UN ambassador Nomzamo Mbatha has a few real AF things to say about the Sudanese uprising, so listen up.

Over the last 10 days, more than 120 people have been killed, more than 700 injured, and more than 80 women raped by Sudanese regime forces in a protest camp. As protesters are met with brutality, the sexual violence and gunfire have escalated. Bodies have been reported floating in the Nile river. Massacres are extending beyond Khartoum, The Guardian reports.

During his 30 years as leader, the former President al-Bashir was accused of leading a genocide in Darfur, killing thousands of people and suppressing dissent. Late last year, protests against food shortages and rising prices started. This quickly turned into anti-government protests.

While the resistance began as peaceful, security forces cracked down on protesters last week. The Internet has now been shut off in the country. Celebrities like Rihanna and Nomzamo stand in solidarity with Sudan. Here are five reasons why you should be, too.

Related: This is What Sudanese Revolutionary, Alaa Salah, Means to Women

1. Women are Leading the Revolution

Women are leading the Sudanese liberation. This viral photo of revolutionary, Alaa Salah, caught the world’s attention during a protest in Khartoum. In the iconic photo below, we see a woman dressed in white, chanting on top of a car as women rally around her.

The peaceful protesters at the forefront of this movement are women. They’ve been demanding ‘economic revolution in the running of the country, basic human needs, and an end to poverty and management of oil resources,’ says Nomzamo.

Women have been instrumental in pushing for the autocratic President al-Bashir to step down. Their resistance has been non-violent. But protesters (women in particular) have been met with violence. Many have been killed, arrested and tortured by the government, according to the BBC.

2. Here’s How Women Are Abused by the Sudanese Police

The police target women in particular. Why? Well, women get arrested by Sudan’s police for (get this) what they wear or for showing their hair. They are punished by flogging and stoning for ‘morality crimes’. What are morality crimes, you might wonder? Adultery is considered one.

In 2016, under President al-Bashir’s rule, around 15 000 women were reportedly sentenced to flogging. Now, soldiers are raping women, violating children and shooting at peaceful protesters:

‘Last week tensions began to rise and, as of this week, soldiers opened fire on peaceful protesters, HAVE BEEN RAPING women and using them as weapons of war, sexually violating children and massacring human lives,’  Nomzamo continues.

3. The Violence is Escalating, With 80 Women Having Been Raped

In the last few weeks, protests have become deadly. Doctors estimate that more than 100 people have been killed. As of Monday, up to 80 women have been raped by paramilitary forces, Essence reports. Sudan is currently in a state of emergency:

‘On 11 April, the Sudanese military removed the President of Sudan, dissolved the Cabinet and the National Legislature, and announced a three-month state of emergency, to be followed by a two-year transition period,’ adds Nomzamo.

4. Sudan’s Internet Has Been Cut

As things get worse and the violence in Sudan escalates, we need to speak up. The Internet has been cut in Sudan, silencing many. Raising awareness is critical RN. It is time to make your voice heard. The revolution is digital, too, so every voice helps.

‘CUT INTERNET ACCESS AND COMMUNICATION AND DECLARED A BLACKOUT,’ says Mbatha.

5. It Affects You, It Affects Africa, It Affects Us All

In Nomzamo’s Instagram post, she points out that the civil war in Sudan will affect us all. It will have a ripple effect, as refugees will have to flee for their lives. Their struggle is our struggle:

‘A lot of people have been asking me to say something and to be honest, my heart has just been broken and a feeling of helplessness overcame me. But together and united, we stand with our African brothers and sisters. The civil war against humanity in Sudan will AFFECT HUMAN MIGRATION AND DISPLACEMENT more than we can imagine, as thousands have to flee for safety and refuge.’

This war dates back to the ’50s, Nomzamo says. It’s claimed more than two-million lives. Sudan has been so ravaged by war, dictatorship and disease that it’s split into countries:

‘In July 2011, after the people of the south region in Sudan voted for independence, it gave birth to THE WORLD’s YOUNGEST COUNTRY, the Republic of South Sudan,’ says Nomzamo.

Here’s Nomzamo’s Full IG Post:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

💔💔A lot of people have been asking me to say something and to be honest, my heart has just been broken and a feeling of helplessness overcame me. But together and united we stand with our African brothers and sisters. The civil war against humanity in Sudan will AFFECT HUMAN MIGRATION AND DISPLACEMENT more than we can imagine as thousands have to flee for safety and refuge. For those who need a little background knowledge here’s a little summary of what is going on. . After DECADES of a civil war in Sudan (dating back as far as 1950’s) that claimed over 2 million (Or even more) lives as a result of war, famine and disease and being ruled under a dictatorship from 1989… Sudan, once the largest and one of the most geographically diverse states in Africa, split into two countries. In July 2011 after the people of the south region in Sudan voted for independence, it gave birth to AFRICA AND THE WORLD’s YOUNGEST COUNTRY, the Republic of South Sudan. . As of last year the Sudanese people have been leading peaceful protests as a form of demanding economic revolution in the running of the country, basic human needs, and end to poverty and Management of oil resources. In a Coup d’état and aftermath. On 11 April, the Sudanese military removed the President of Sudan, dissolved the cabinet and the National Legislature, and announced a three-month state of emergency, to be followed by a two-year transition period. . The peaceful protests during this period were still happening, with two months ago wading to a mostly peaceful political transition. Last week tensions began to rise and as of this week, soldiers opened fire on peaceful protesters, HAVE BEEN RAPING women and using them as weapons of war, sexually violating children and massacred human lives. CUT INTERNET ACCESS AND COMMUNICATION AND DECLARED A BLACKOUT . We STAND IN SOLIDARITY WITH THE PEOPLE OF SUDAN and declare an act of violent INJUSTICE ON HUMANITY. . Praying for a nation which is at the crossroads of the continent to find appeasement and its path to peace and for policy makers to take a stand against injustice AND DO SOMETHING 🇸🇩 #SudanUprising #Sudan #SudanMassacre 🙏🏾 #PeaceForSudan

A post shared by Nomzamo Mbatha 🇿🇦 (@nomzamo_m) on

Let’s stand with our brothers and sisters in Sudan.

FEATURED IMAGE: @quitapenasmusic

Read more Politics

More From

Politics

Politics 16 Oct 2019 SHARE
Take our ‘Enough is Enough’ survey and stand to WIN 10 one-year-long digital subscriptions to COSMO
Politics 17 Oct 2019 SHARE
5 things to know about Somali-Canadian activist Ilwad Elman, who was shortlisted for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize
Politics 14 Oct 2019 SHARE
Kenya’s ‘talking boxes’ are helping girls break their silence on abuse