How and why did Chokwe Lumumba die?


A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Chokwe Lumumba, Chokwe Antar Lumumba speaks election night 060413 by Trip BurnsWhen a Black radical dies in Mississippi, one should never accept at face value the state’s word on the cause of death. When that revolutionary Black man dies soon after becoming mayor of the state’s capital and largest city, history and reason compel us to put assassination first on our list of possibilities.

And if that Black man has brought with him to Jackson, Mississippi, a band of fellow revolutionaries from around the state and the nation, united under the banner of Malcolm X, for the purpose of totally upending the old order of race and class, not just in the Deep South, but across the planet, then it is imperative that impartial science tell us the exact and incontestable cause of this man’s demise.

Yet, the Mississippi state coroner has refused to perform an autopsy on the body of Chokwe Lumumba, who was elected by a landslide in June and died last Tuesday after checking into a hospital. The coroner says only that the mayor succumbed of “natural causes.”

The state of Mississippi and its minions have zero credibility when it comes to Black life and death.

But the state of Mississippi and its minions have zero credibility when it comes to Black life and death. Common sense tells us that the state is full of people who would love nothing better than to kill its most prominent radical, who was inviting other radicals of all races from around the country to a conference in May to discuss the nuts and bolts of social transformation from the ground up.

The Jackson Rising conference – which is still scheduled – is an invitation to a second Reconstruction through participatory democracy and new, cooperative economics. The event is meant to present a clear and present challenge to the rule of money and the hierarchy of race. Mississippi has murdered thousands of Black people for far less reason than that.

Mayor Lumumba’s family and close friends sought an independent autopsy, and the National Council of Black Lawyers, of which Mayor Lumumba had been a member since his days in law school, in Detroit, put out the call for funds.

Akinyele Umoja, a close friend and longtime comrade in the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, which Lumumba helped found in 1993, and who is also chairman of African American Studies at Georgia State University, says that even if Mississippi agreed to do an autopsy, there’s no reason to believe their findings. “We don’t want to trust them to do it, anyway,” said Professor Umoja.

The Jackson Rising conference – which is still scheduled – is an invitation to a second Reconstruction through participatory democracy and new, cooperative economics. Mississippi has murdered thousands of Black people for far less reason than that.

Kenny Stokes, a Black supervisor for the county surrounding Jackson, thinks the mayor was murdered, pure and simple. “I’m not going to sugarcoat it,” said the elected official. “I believe that someone killed him … and a lot of other people feel he was killed.”

No matter what the independent autopsy concludes, Mississippi is guilty, has always been guilty and will remain guilty until it is transformed by the kind of people’s power that Chokwe Lumumba envisioned.

The mayor’s funeral is this Saturday. His 30-year-old son, Chokwe Antar Lumumba, has announced he’ll run to fill his father’s seat in a special election on April 8, so that Jackson can keep on rising.

For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go to

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at





  2. Where is Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, the NAACP, Louis Farrakhan, and all of the other black leaders, including the Congressional Black Caucus, the BLACK MEDIA, and black preachers from all across the nation in speaking to, and calling for an investigation into this "murder," no doubt? I'm surprise Al and Jesse have not jumped in front of TV cameras. Even though I know that Sharpton is now a "bought and sold slave" of the same Jews and other whites that are controlling President Obama, and MSNBC – TV. So Uncle Al has to pick the fights that he gets into now, and is told when he can and cannot take part in. Excuse me, because I have to go to the restroom and vomit, just thinking about these sorry leaders we now have representing the black race. — Rev. George Brooks

    • Rev

      Minister Farrakhan has responded. I believe its on you tube. He has volunteered to pay for an independent autopsy.

    • Minister Farrakhan issued a statement on this past Sunday March 2nd, that he is willing to pay for an independent autopsy into Brother Lumumba's death.

    • Y'all do know that Mayor Lumumba was very ill, right? He had been on dialysis for years and there was talk of his health during his campaign. People wondered if he would make it through his term because he was so ill. Don't jump on the bandwagon until you know the facts.

  3. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan issued a statement this past Sunday March 2nd, that he would pay for an independent autopsy. The Minister has serious questions about the circumstances surrounding Brother Lumumba's death.

  4. There is no doubt in my mind that Brother Mayor Lumumba was murdered by CA operatives. Our Brother was implementing a government that was eradicating White Supremacy / Racism and creating policies that would I notify the Masses of Black People into a Powerful Political, Economic Force. Mississippi has a history of murdering Black People. A Brother like Mayor Lumumba had to be stopped in the eyes of The enemy. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has offered to Donate $ 15,000 to have an independent autopsy performed to prove to the world That Brother Mayor Lumumba was murdered. We must rally together and continue with the Fight for Freedom, Justice and Equality. Up You Mighty Nation You Can Accomplish What You Will!!!!

    • If there is no doubt in your mind, then you are not being rational and you are not objective. If you look at the evidence, you will have doubt he was murdered: 66 year old man with chronic kidney disease dies of heart failure at a hospital… and, you want it to be murder so that's that. You should work for FOX "News."

  5. Anytime there is a black person who is afro – centered in their political thought and uses his position to work in the best interest of black people, that person can be assassinated first in the media and then physically. It is obvious that you have no knowledge of the methods this racists country uses to destroy strong black leadership. Brother Mayor Lumumba was only in office for 8 months and then he is dead. This government has drugs that they use that mimics heart attacks. They use their media to mislead the public into thinking the person died of “natural causes”. Intelligent black people know the how our enemies operate and we know that our Brother was Murdered. You are totally deaf, dumb and blind to evil of White Government and the desire of our enemies to see our Bold, Fearless Leaders Neutralized. We have seen this white enemy in action for over 450 years. You can never tell us anything about our enemy, our true leaders and how to fight white supremacy/ Racism. We are determined to choose our own leaders Leader’s like Brother Lumumba who put Black interest first.

  6. @seamus – How do you know so much about how he died if there hasn't been an autopsy? Where are the news reports that he was gravely ill during his campaign?

  7. All of you Malcolm x people, if you hate America and freedom so much, than it begs the question, why are you here?! Go live in Kenia, Somolia, Congo, Uganda, Tunisia, Ethiopia, just pick one! It's not hard to see what makes America the kind of place people are immigrating to by the droves and let me tell you, it's not the whoremongering that the "Jackson Rising Conference" purports to be all about! And when you leave, take Lumumba 2 , Kenny Stokes, Benny Thompson, your dishonerable Luis Farrakhan, and yes, let's not leave behind Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and his criminal son and most especially, not least of all, the biggest liar and law breaker of all, Barry Barak Husein Obama and his 'wifey-poo", Michelle!! Please keep America free for us who love freedom!!

  8. So much hate in this thread.

    I am a white male AND a Mississippian, married to a woman of part West Indian (West Indies), part East Indian (East India) descent. We must all forgive past injustices that did not involve either of us if we are to coexist and thrive. Believe it or not, most white people are not concerned with keeping anyone down, we are only trying to survive, just like you. If you must judge, judge people individually. I didn't say racism doesn't exist, it does, both black and white. Just open your mind. I would have missed out on so much if I had shut out, or hated people who are different than me.

  9. All white people benefit by white supremacy/racism. You receive special favors and privileges. Why would you ask Black People to forget 350 years of chattel slavery, the killing of hundreds of millions of us during the Middle Passage, the theft of our African names, religion, culture, the raping of our women, the castration, beatings, mutilation of our bodies, the working millions of us for over 3 centuries which has made America rich? Ask the Jewish people to forget what happened to them during the Holocaust. Every area of Human Activity in this country is designed to keep white people in power and Blacks and other peoples of color subservient. Black people receive no justice in the criminal justice system. We are still in 2014 the last hired and the first fired. The Black unemployment rate is 17% the highest among any ethnic group. We deal with racism everyday in every institution on this country. You want us to be quiet because of social gains that we have made. Those gains are good, but there is so much more that needs to be done. There will never be harmony between Blacks and whites, as long as this wicked so-called democracy exist. There is A Black man in the white house, but he wasn’t elected to be the president of Black People but of all people. That really means the president of the real policy makers who are behind the scenes calling the shots, not only for President Obama, but for all presidents who have been elected. You must understand that there are millions of Black People who understand that we must controlled our own economics, politics, education, community institutions and world view. We have no hatred for white people, we have Love for our people and we teach them the truth about who we are and about what this country is all about. We are not free and we will continue to fight until we are free. As a matter of fact, most of us are more enslaved today than we were 150 years ago. The chains are on our brains today. This country is dying because of the evil that she has practiced on people of color all over the world. I pressed people are in harmony with Black Peoples condition and our desire for Freedom, Justice and Equality. We will never f forget what this country has done to us, is doing to us and plans to do to us.People like me are called Black Nationalists,Pan-Africans and Revolutionaries.

  10. Mikal, I didn't ask you to forget… I asked you to forgive. I don't want to hold you down, or hold anyone down. I understand your point, but it's the establishment that wants to hold you down. That same establishment now wants to hold us all down, because they want more power. Direct your efforts against the people in REAL power, not the everyday white person trying to make it.

  11. Mikal, when I passed by a Muslim gentleman from the Middle East less than 1 month after 911, smiled and asked how he was doing today, and his response was "Thank You", or when I tell someone who has just made a racist comment that I do not share their beliefs, then I think I am doing my part. I cannot and will not feel guilty for being born with my skin color, which I cannot help.

    If we met on the street, I just want to be able to greet you with respect, and you greet me with respect, and know that I am separate from anyone else.

  12. One more thing Mikal, I am an educated person. Africans operated as slave traders and captors of slaves. African tribes enslaved other tribes. Have you heard of Kpoto-Zounme Hakpon III?

    Honestly, the people in power want it this way. They want tension between black people and white people, it makes us all easier to control. They want us at each others throats while they push their agenda unnoticed.

  13. "know that 99.9% of whites can't be trusted"

    The above statement has shown me why it's futile to have this discussion. I came here with good intentions, but it is clear that I am not making progress.

    Also, I never offered my opinion of the World Trade Center or the evils of the government, but since you brought it up, I agree with you. You fail to see that we do not agree with ever increasing government control. This country may be on the edge of revolt.

    "What we want is a real government were all men can live in peace, but in order for that to happen the people must be educated to the country that we live in"

    Do you think I, or most white people feel differently? You said it yourself, just now… where all men can live in peace. Not just black or white.

    I didn't strip away your African names, I didn't finance the slave ships, I didn't beat, castrate, or rape anyone. My family tree didn't even exist in America in that time, as we hail from Switzerland. It is narrow minded to presume that all white people feel the same, act the same, and do the same.

  14. You just don’t understand. A government were Black People Govern ourselves. We want to live peace with ourselves and others as long as those others can live under Black Autority. Most whites don’t want to live under Black rule. Look at South Africa. Many whites hate being governed by Blacks. See the white minority still controls most of the wealth in that country. The power brokers there know that as long as the control the wealth, they still control the country. Weather your forepart were in Switzerland or other parts I found Europe, they were in harmony with everything their European brothers did. You today benefit from what your forepart did. You have special privilege and benefits just because you are white. We are owed reparations from this country. That’s what’s this governmeny. They don’t want to repair the damage of 450 years of damage done to my people.This government does even want to admit that what happened to Black People in the u.s. was the worst atrocity in the history of the world. We are owed Trillions of dollars for our slave labor which the soul reason why America is as rich and powerful as she is. The Congressional Black Caucus has voted for reparations for us for the last 35 years, but white congressman won’t vote on it. The sins of the father’s will be brought upon the children. That’s the problem with you phony white liberals you fake friendship with Black People, but you are more dangerous that a Ku Klux Klausmen with a rope and a gun. See you can’t be trusted. We know that the Black Man is going to be at the head of the new world that is coming in. Why do you have a problem with Black People that don’t want to be your brothers. If you are a white person like Father Michael Phleger in Chicago who fights against white supremacy/ racism and has rejected that mindset then maybe we can talk. Do you love The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan? Do you love Dr. Francis Cress-Welsing? If your answer is no than begone. If your answer is yes go help these leaders to liberate Black People. You are the one who’s mind is closed. You are just like most white men. You want to tell us how to fight for our freedom, who to be our leaders and if we reject your ” advice” you say we aren’t being brotherly. You sly hypocrite. I know you. You are of your father the devil. He is a liar from the beginning. He is a murder a theft a rapist and you endorse everything that Allah says not to do. I don’t hate pit bulls, but I know his vicious nature.I don’t hate white people I just know your wicked nature. Whether you are under the power of the 1% or not you want to be in Autority over Blacks.I know whites 6000 year history and you have never been a friend to the Black man. You are our #1 Ememy!!!! “

  15. There is only 1 problem in the world. White Supremacy/Racism. That is what controls every country on this earth. Every since white were made 6000 years ago they have caused mischief and the shedding of blood. Read the history of white people. No other race has killed more people, stolen more land and resources, raped more women, destroyed more of the earth’s natural resources. No other people promote men marring men and women marring women. All humans can manifest evil, but white people are the greatest manifestation of the devil that has ever been on the earth. Read your history with an open mind and you have to agree. We are not brothers by nature. We are not the same. You have miss educated Black people. 85% of black people are blind, deaf and dumb. They don’t who the true God is, who they really are, who white people are or what makes rain, hail, snow and earthquakes. They believe that these things are real but that something unreal a “Mystery God” produced this. Then you have 10% Blood sicker of the poor, the slave makers of the poor, who teach the 85% lies about every aspect of human endeavors. They are that small percentage of white people who in power. Then you have the 5% Poor Righteous Teachers who are all wise who no that Allah is A Human Being, The Supreme Being. This 5% is all wise and they teach the 85% The knowledge of themselves and the reality of God-Allah, The Knowledge of The Real Devil- The white race. The 10% hate the 5% and work night and day using all of their institutions discredit, malign and kill these wonderful people. America’s fall is going to be the biggest fall that any country has ever had since the world began.We are living in its fall as we write. What side are we going to be on? The side of The Devil, Satan , The Slave masters children, The Enemy? Or are we going to be on the side of Allah and his Christ, The side of Freedom, Justice and Equality, The Side of Righteousness? I’m not going to be tricked by my 400 year old enemy, that now he is all of a sudden my friend. Can the Devil fool a Muslim? Not Now Days!!!!!!!!!

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