Lifestyle Nigeria 

AfAW: Combating Witch Persecution and Resource Question

Since the Advocacy for Alleged Witches (AfAW) was launched in January, some people have been asking questions regarding the mission, scope and future of the campaign. One question has continued to reoccur. That is, the question of resources. Or better, how to fund the campaign. In fact a BBC journalist repeatedly asked me: Where will you get the resources? From the tone of his voice, I noticed a feeling that the advocacy was a premature, unrealizable and not-a-well-thought out initiative.

I clearly understand the concern especially when this initiative, which the BBC journalist described as ‘very ambitious’ is coming from an African who is not known to be rich by any stretch of imagination or statistics. But, is history not filled with instances where efforts such as AfAW’s started with little or no cash but eventually succeeded?
Of course, when it comes to prosecuting such a continent-wide campaign in a place like Africa with its difficult economic realities, resource is an issue. Resource is needed. And for some people, without any certified means of funding, the advocacy would be dead on arrival. Or rather, the project would end up becoming some noise that would soon fizzle out. Well I want to make it clear that I am not new to the campaign against witch hunting in the region. I am also not new to initiating a movement such as this. From my own experiences, both as an activist and a scholar, the resource that is needed to achieve a critical mass of advocates against witch persecution in all affected African countries by 2030 is right here in Africa, and right here in the world.

The resource is local and global, national and transnational, financial and material, physical and virtual, political and economic, individual and institutional. The resource is abundantly there waiting for us to tap into it, and to deploy it. The question is this: Can we utilize this resource? Are we able to shun despair, cynicism and pessimism and get this advocacy initiative that is long over due rolling?

Instead of asking where AfAW would get the means to fund its campaign programs across Africa, anybody who is perturbed by the persecution of alleged witches in Africa should be proposing how to use the available resource to achieve this important mission. Everybody should be concerned with making his or her own resource available to AfAW so that it can achieve its target and realize a witch-hunting free Africa in 2030

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