Today is the birthday of JOSINA MUTEMBA MACHEL – Freedom fighter for the Liberation of Mozambique. Born 10th August 1945.
Josina Mutemba began fighting for the Liberation of Africans in Mozambique as a teenager. She comes from a family of anticolonialists some of who were assassinated for there activities. At age 15 she was already joining organisations of her peers against Portuguese colonialism. In her late teens she fled Mozambique for Tanzania to joined the Mozambique Liberation Front (FRELIMO).
In FRELIMO she became a member of the women’s wing and underwent military training. She helped pioneer the combination of Military victory & social welfare among the women’s branch. In other words, not only were they winning military battles, they began setting up child care centres & health clinics in the areas they liberated even as the Liberation war continued.
Her experiences lead her to become and ideological proponent for the role of women in all aspects of African revolutionary activity. A fact which inspired the man who would become her husband and later President of Revolutionary Mozambique – Samora Machel.
Josina Machel died in 1971 at the age of 25 years old. Even with a diagnosis of liver cancer she kept on working. Mozambique would not see independence and revolutionary government til 1975, and it was women such as Josina Mutemba Machel who helped make that happen.
Today she stands as a stalwart of African revolutionary theory, practice & victory.
By Basu Shakara