Universal Zulu Nation and Zulu Nation founding members have created ‘Kumi Siku Kikumbuko’ to educate the youth about slavery and remembering its ancestors.
The strength, resiliency, and fearlessness of Harriet Tubman are utterly undeniable. Taking the time to recognize and honor our sheroes that empower new generations of women to be fearless and take action where necessary in likeness of the same spirit of the ancestors that came before them. In honor of Harriet Tubman, her legacy, and the struggles, sacrifices, and resiliency of all enslaved Black people a new holiday has been created. The Universal Zulu Nation along with Quadeer Shakur, Mick Benzo, and Amad Henderson have collaborated to create ‘Kumi Siku Kikumbuko’ which is Swahili for ‘Ten Day Remembrance.’
‘Kumi Siku Kikumbuko’ begins as we conclude Black history Month, running from March 1st thru March 10th. The purpose of this holiday is to take ten days to embrace, remember, and teach about the atrocities and lingering effects of slavery on Black or Original people. Families are encouraged to celebrate by taking each of the ten days to teach their children reasons why slavery is something that should never be forgotten. Quadeer added,
The holiday is the beginning. We have years to go. But it’s a painful truth that America must know, and it shouldn’t have to be in a Hollywood format. This is our truth and reality that needs to be told. And told often.
We all understand that the history of Black and Brown people began prior to slavery, however, it is important to have an open dialogue about slavery, injustice, and its mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual effects on the culture or people effected. Hip Hop is unique in that it’s a vehicle that reaches and captivates mainstream media despite the fact that it was born of from the struggles of Black and Brown people here in America. Mike Benzo stated,
We will never forget slavery. This is very important to our people and our Culture. Bambaataa has always taught us that Education/Knowledge is the 5th and most important element of Hip Hop Culture… The one thing that we should all remember is that knowledge is the key to everything.
Honoring Harriet Tubman and her contributions as an abolitionist whose fearlessness and determination freed thousands of slaves through the Underground Railroad is the perfect way to start this amazing holiday. In a powerful statement, Shakur added,
Because women experienced more than we could imagine, I decided it was best to honor the contributions of Harriet Tubman. Could you imagine being pregnant, tied to a post, and your child cut out of your stomach in front of your entire family? While your husband stood by powerless? These are the reasons why a woman was chosen to be honored. Her sacrifice. Her struggle. Her strength. It lifted our men up for more than 400 years here in America.
As many of us prepare to participate in ‘Kumi Siku Kikumbuko’ please visit the Facebook page so that you can learn more and participate as well at
As we remember, acknowledge, and educate our families about slavery, share your stories on social media with the hashtag #NeverForgetSlavery. For the truth to be known about a cultures history, it has to be told by its people. Black and Brown people cannot afford to continue to have their stories told by others. Griots carried our story and shared it among the people for generations and this holiday connects us with that tradition in many ways. Sometimes to progressively move forward you have to look back and see where you have traveled. As I eagerly participate in ‘Kumi Siku Kikumbuko,’ join me as I #NeverForgetSlavery on Twitter @NakeashaJ and Instagram @Melanated_Beauty