I remember looking through my Twitter timeline and seeing a young woman called Sitawa Wafula being congratulated for winning a philanthropy award and when I looked into her, I knew I must share her story on African Queens Project: http://africanqueensproject.com/2013/08/12/sitawa-wafula/.
Sitawa advocates on an issue that has been a silent killer on our beautiful continent, an issue that is usually blanketed by age old beliefs and harsh traditional views thus leaving the victims of this silent killer to miss out on much needed medical treatment. The issue I am talking about is Mental health related sicknesses. Sitawa Wafula, after suffering a rape ordeal, rose up from the ashes by giving a voice to the voiceless via promoting awareness on Victims of rape as well as mental Health sicknesses, having developed one after her rape ordeal.
She has recently launched a campaign called #HugSitawa, “that aims to create awareness about mental health and suicide and also raise money for a toll free help line.”
“Currently, 1 in every 4 Kenyans will experience a mental health condition in their lifetime. This narrows down to each and every household in this country having a brush with either bipolar, depression, suicide, alcohol and substance abuse disorders, just to mention a few.
…All these households will have to compete for the services of 79 psychiatrists serving a population of 40 million Kenyans.
…All these households will also compete for space in one referral hospital what is understaffed, underfunded and overcrowded.
…And like me, all these households will not have a proper support system.”
If you would like to find out more about this campaign and how you can be a part of it, please check out this link for more information: http://sitawa.blogspot.com/2013/09/hugsitawa-campaign.html
I am hoping that by my sharing her story and her campaign that is currently located in Kenya, that it will be an eye opener for other campaigns in other countries like Tanzania, Uganda, and Chad just to name a few. Below is a blog post that Sitawa wrote where she poetically describes what happened to her the day that shook her world and turned it upside down. #HugSitawa
|“I will keep telling my story because everyday,
a man, a woman, a child is raped”
This whole fiasco behind Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks, got me reading into it even further because there is always more to the story. At the moment, what that “more” is, is yet to be revealed, but it doesn’t stop us from looking into the facts, cause no one can argue with cold hard facts, right?
1. Julian Assange fled Sweden to avoid Questioning: This is false. The facts stand that a Swedish court issued an arrest warrant for him on charges of rape made by two Swedish women, who were also former employees of Wikileaks. In fact, the case was dropped because it was too weak and he was given permission to leave Sweden on 15th September 2010. But after an intervention of a Swedish politician close to some American diplomats it was reopened again and a warrant for his arrest was reissued on November 2012.
2. Julian Assange will receive a fair trial in Sweden: This is false. Assange would be tried behind closed doors, which is contrary to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), Art. 47 of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights, and the UK’s fundamental constitutional principles. Assange would be held incommunicado and placed under solitary confinement and pre-trial detention would last for an indefinite period. If Julian is extradited, it is more than likely that he will be extradited to the United States where he risks being sent to Guantánamo Bay or executed as a traitor.
3. Julian Assange was ordered by the British to turn himself in and he refused. This is true. While still at the Ecuadorean embassy where he was seeking political asylum, he received a letter from the Metropolitan police demanding that he surrender on June 28th, 2012 so that he can face extradition to Sweden. Julian denied the charges made against him saying that they are politically motivated and on June 29th, 2012 officially refused to turn himself in.
4. The British threaten to storm the Ecuadorian Embassy. This is false. They claimed that they would first revoke diplomatic status from the Ecuadorian embassy in Britain, thus no longer making it an embassy, which is allowed under the British Law. So technically if they go ahead with this plan they would not be storming an embassy, it would be a raid on a “building,” However Ricardo Patino, Ecuador’s foreign minister, told reporters, “The move announced in the official British statement, if it happens, would be interpreted by Ecuador as an unfriendly, hostile and intolerable act, as well as an attack on our sovereignty, which would force us to respond in the strongest diplomatic way….We want to be very clear, we’re not a British colony. The colonial times are over.”
4. The UK does not accept Political Asylum seekers. This is false. The UK does, but the asylum seekers are scrutinized very carefully because of a lot of economic migrants claiming to be political asylum seekers. Though Assange was granted political asylum on August 16, 2012 by Ecuador, Foreign secretary William Hague said the UK does not recognize this and will not allow Assange safe passage to Ecuador.
Again these are just some facts and there is a lot more going on than is being revealed to the public. The fact that the British are willing to go to such extremes as to want to revoke an embassy’s diplomatic status to get a man who is vaguely accused of crimes with questionable evidence begs the question, why now? What is going on behind the scenes between Sweden, the UK and the US? What are they so afraid of now that they are willing to do whatever it takes to get Assange? I just want the truth and the truth will eventually come out.