African Liberation Day May 19 at center of freedom celebrations

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Children of the 1983-1987 Burkina Faso Revolution. Burkina Faso military leaders expelled all French military in February 2023, and all French diplomats in April 2024. (Photo source: Wikipedia)

The worldwide celebration of African Liberation Day on May 19 may serve as the centerpiece for a medley of other commemorative events, including the celebration of the birthdays of Malcolm X and Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh, the Palestine (Nakba) Day on May 18, and solidarity with the American Indian Movement, according to Lee Robinson, host of the online radio broadcast “Africa on the Move”.

Robinson is an organizing member of the All-African People’s Revolutionary Party (GC), the organization that is hosting the 66th commemoration of African Liberation Day scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, May 18-19, in Washington, D.C. Since 1976, the AAPRP (GC) has taken the lead in celebrating African Liberation Day worldwide, he said.

The Palestine Nakba Day takes place 1-5 p.m. Saturday, May 18, in the National Mall. African Liberation Day is scheduled for 12-6 p.m. Sunday, May 19, in Malcolm X Park, at 15th and W Street NW in the nation’s capital.

This will be the first time since 2021, during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, that African Liberation Day will hold its events in DC’s Malcolm X Park.

“This institution has been going on for 66 years,” Robinson said. “What it represents is the ongoing resistance against the oppressive forces working against Africa, African people, as well various nations and people throughout the world. This day and this institution are important because this is the only time of the year that Africans from all over the world can come together in Washington D.C. and other areas where it may take place and to go back home to celebrate and remind themselves of the great contributions that Africa has made and that African people are making to world humanity.”


African Liberation Day, Robinson said, began on April 15, 1958, as a tribute to the First Conference of Independent African States in Accra, Ghana, under the leadership of Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkrumah, although it was celebrated then as African Freedom Day. 

After the formation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) on May 25, 1963, the name and day of the celebration were changed to African Liberation Day and the date to May 25. The African Union (AU), the successor organization to the OAU, has continued the tradition of celebrating African Union Day and African Liberation Day on May 25.

“Officially,” Robinson said, “African Liberation Day was declared on May 25, 1963. We nevertheless celebrate African Liberation Day within the orbit of, but not necessarily always on, May 25. Normally, we try to have it on the weekend closest to the 25th or the weekend before the 25th. So, you may see different people celebrating African Liberation Day anywhere from May 15 to June 1.”

“Maybe half of the celebrations will be on May 19, which is also the birthday of Malcolm X and Ho Chi Minh, the patriarch and leader of Vietnam’s fight for independence,” he said.


Robinson revealed that some individuals and organizations professing to take pride in African Liberation Day don’t share the politics of the originators of the event, especially the consistently pro-African revolutionary leaders like Kwame Nkrumah, Sekou Toure, and Kwame Ture.

The All-African People’s Revolutionary Party (AAPRP) was the creation of Kwame Nkrumah and a select number of other African leaders who called for “the total liberation and unification of Africa” under a Pan-Africanist government. Today’s successors to the original group of organizers met in Conakry, Guinea, on August 9, 2006, and proclaimed themselves to be “the authentic inheritors and continuators of the revolutionary writings, teachings, struggles, and work of Kwame Nkrumah, Sekou Toure, and Kwame Ture. 

“We reaffirm uncompromising belief that Africa remains primary for all Africans, those in Africa, and those abroad in the struggle for Revolutionary Pan-Africanism,” the organizers declared.

In 2010, the AAPRP launched a three-year world-wide offensive to recruit and develop supporters and party chapters in Africa and the African Diaspora, and to recruit and establish solidarity with allies in every corner of the World.


“African Liberation Day is an institution that gives you primary information from primary sources,” said Robinson. “It opens a window into the other liberation movements and issues where Africans will have a chance to understand that the freedom of Africa should not be their one and only objective if the greater part of mankind is not free.”

Peter Landeros, Director of the American Indian Movement (AIM), in Washington, DC, Pennsylvania, and Maryland is very well aware of the interdependence of different peoples in the struggle for liberation. As a guest on last Sunday’s “Africa on the Move” broadcast hosted by Robinson, Landeros said that in the 1980s and the 1990s, the Black Panthers and AIM had worked closely together against American police oppression.

“I’m here to make sure the truth is told between the Native American and the African American community and the African community because there’s a lot of things that aren’t talked about,” he said. “Like how we coexisted alongside each other, and that it wasn’t Christopher Columbus who discovered America because there were West Africans who had been coming here for centuries before him, trading and other truths like that. The Panthers and the American Indian Movement worked together and other coalitions of people from the African and African American community worked along with Indigenous people from Wisconsin to make a statement.” 


During the same broadcast, Palestinian Youth Movement leader Mohammad Abou Ghazala said that the older generations of Palestinians had stressed assimilation and were too deferential in giving up their rights in the countries where they had settled. 

“The Youth movement views the prior generations as having sold out,” he said. “All our institutions were destroyed through the capitulation of our previous leadership in the 90s with the so-called Oslo Accords and the so-called peace process that followed. 

“As a result of the capitulation, all my generation – called the third generation – grew up entirely detached from the struggle.”

Obvious ploys were being used to keep the Palestinian youth and the future generations separated from the struggle, he said. 

The Palestinian Youth Movement, however, is determined to make a correction in the current course of action, said Abou Ghazala. “It is an attempt to rebuild all those revolutionary institutions in the diaspora, and have the Palestinian youth reclaim its rightful place and responsibility within the revolutionary struggle for liberation. And to agitate, to mobilize, and to politicize our community, no matter where they are.”

Ibrahim Ebeid is a Palestinian who dwells at the other end of the age spectrum from Abou Ghazala. He is close to 90 and has been a regular participant in African Liberation Day festivities for many years.

“I knew Brother Kwame Ture, and he encouraged me many times. And I can still feel his spirit around,” Ebeid said. 

“In the 70s, I was working with the PLO in New York. We were attached to the United Nations. We were only two people at that time, and when Yasir Arafat announced that he would come here, I resigned, because I knew they were going to make him bow to a peace that does not benefit us at all.” 

Ebeid is encouraged by the growing fight for the liberation of Palestine. “We reject the Zionist Jewish state in Palestine. We believe in the whole liberation of Palestine, and we believe that Zionism is racism and is not only dangerous to the people and to humanity in general, but also to the Jews.” 

People around the world are being oppressed by international imperialism, Zionism and apartheid systems, Robinson said. 

“These are the major forces that are obstacles to the freedom and liberation of humanity and its forward progress,” he concluded. “And these are some of the reasons we celebrate African Liberation Day.”

For RSVP and further information, go the website: or email:

Republish This Story

Copy and Paste the below text.

African Liberation Day May 19 at center of freedom celebrations

By Earnest McBride
May 20, 2024