Following the workshop led by Margaux Richet, moderator and intercultural facilitator, and guided in building up their action plan by Aymane Aouidi, their local coordinator, the participants recorded the testimonies of Ahmed Haou, former death row prisoner in Morocco, Milouf Loukili, legal expert, Abdessamad Dialmy, sociologist, Ms Fatiha Chtattou, Lawyer, Soufian Al Hommary, Journalist, Farahat Yaakoub Sadek, Researcher, and Soukaina Moutaouakkil, spokesperson of the Moroccan delegation.
This video, presented in Berlin, was posted on social medias and shown to members of civil society, so that a wide number of people could see the reality of the death penalty narrated by those who have faced it. It was also a mean to show the diversity of actors involved in the abolition process. The delegation is now planning to organise a series of events (debates, conferences…) to raise public awareness. To follow their actions closely, follow the Moroccan delegation on Instagram (@abolition_now_morocco)!
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Following their workshop in October 2021, the DRC youth conducted outreach events. In accordance with their motto, “Passing on the flame of abolition to ensure provision with the next generation”, they reached to the religious and student communities, starting with a workshop with young scouts. The group also set up an online campaign, called “C’est possible !” (It’s possible). The aim? To use social media to spread the word of abolition. Eventually, the young people have put together a sketch, to raise awareness through an activity that is both artistic and fun.
Find the Congolese delegation on Tik Tok (@abolition.rdc)!
The members of the Kenyan delegation first chose to conduct their advocacy with different audiences: members of civil society, high school and secondary school students. To increase their impact, they joined forces with the Crime Si Poa organisation, founded by Pete Ouko, a former death row prisoner and the group’s local coordinator. Over a period of six months, the group organised several conferences, including workshops for paralegals in Kisumu County and a conference at the African Digital Media Institute (ADMI) in Nairobi: a strategic event as participants came from different parts of the country and left with the mission of transmitting the values of abolition in their home counties.
The delegation also went to the East African Regional Conference on the Death Penalty with William Okumu, a former death row prisoner, to discuss strategies to promote the abolition of the death penalty with relevant stakeholders.
The young Kenyans were also keen to reach out to the public on the internet: this is why they devised a campaign on social media as well as a monitoring the reactions of social media users speaking about the death penalty, to get people to think about the real issues of capital punishment. Follow the Kenyan delegation on instagram (@abolition.Kenya)!
The Indonesian delegation instinctively turned to social media for their advocacy work: as the Covid-19 pandemic was still active in the region, their first workshop had to be held in a hybrid format. This situation did not diminish their motivation to mobilise public opinion behind the screen: cooperating with other organisations such as Death Penalty Abolish, Transformative Justice, the School of Human Rights by KontraS, Lingkar Study Feminist, this group conducted live sessions on Instagram and tackled sensitive issues such as migrants sentenced to death, reaching a total of more than 1,200 internet users.
Eventually, to embody the struggle, the Indonesian delegation produced portraits of four key witnesses: prisoners sentenced to death in their country or relatives of prisoners.
Convinced by the Abolition Now Tour introductory workshop, this group chose to replicate this format with a student audience to raise awareness about the death penalty and strengthen their advocacy skills. Individuals from all walks of life were invited to the workshop to provide an intersectional approach to the issue.
The workshop was facilitated by experts on the subject and divided into four parts: non-violent communication, the legal aspect of the death penalty, a testimony from a Lebanese activist who was sentenced to death, and a moment of sharing on the power of art in advocacy strategies.
The final objective of this workshop? To provide the participants with the tools to replicate the workshop in their respective communities and thus increase their impact tenfold. The members of the Lebanese delegation were awarded an event organised in their honour by MP Zyad Al-Hawat and the NGO Ahla Jbeil on the 20th World Day against the Death Penalty.
United States (Texas)
The Texas delegation also took to social media to advocate: a very active Instagram account was created to keep track of news related to the death penalty in the USA and particularly in Texas. To reinforce their commitment to the fight for human rights, the group also took part in demonstrations and the abolitionist event Starvin’ for Justice in Washington DC.
During their workshop in Texas, the delegation particularly excelled in the performance of the song I have a voice, which band member trey legall reinterpreted on stage in Berlin during the plenary session The New Abolitionist Generation: Transmission and Innovation (replay available here).
Abolition Now Tour Texas’ post-convention plans include the creation of an online art gallery for abolition, which they will feed with art from the archives of Rick Halperin, their local coordinator.
ECPM would like to thank all the people who made this project possible:
- Sarah Hajjar, #AbolitionNowTour main coordinator and project manager for the 8th World congress against the death penalty.
- Margaux Richet, moderator and intercultural facilitator
- Aymane Aouidi, local coordinator Morocco
- Amina Bouayach, President of the Moroccan National Council for Human Rights (CNDH)
- Fadoua Farhat, Project Manager at the Moroccan Prison Observatory (OMP)
- Ahmed Haou, former death row prisoner in Morocco
- Ms Suzanne Mangomba
- Mr Liévin Ngondji
- Ms Charlène Yanganzo
- The association Culture for Peace and Justice (DRC)
- Pete Ouko, local coordinator Kenya and former death row prisonner
- William Okumu, former death row prisonner in Kenya
- Rizky Fariza Alfian, local coordinator Indonesia
- Rayyan Auliya, member of KontraS (Indonesia)
- The Lebanese Association for Civil Rights
- Tanya Awad Ghorra, local coordinator Lebanon
- PhD Ogarit Younan, co-founder of the LACR and of the abolitionist movement in Lebanon
- Antoinette Chahine, former death row prisoner in Lebanon
- Hala Abou Ali
- John Lucio, the son of Melissa Lucio who is currently on death row in the United States (Texas)
- Debra Milke, former death row prisoner in Arizona
- Witness To Innocence
- Sandrine Ageorges-Skinner, former ECPM administrator and wife of Hank Skinner who is currently on death row in Texas
- Rick Halperin, local coordinator Texas
- The European Union, Germany, Switzerland, and France for their financial support