EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, THE GAMBIA:-
Local-based Gambian activist Mustapha Manneh has been nominated for a prestigious Africans Rising 2020 Activist of the Year Award.
Mustapha Manneh is a passionate community servant with the ability to inspire and motivate individuals in identifying their potential to continue and share this passion to serve others, the award committee said in statement.
Speaking to Eye Africa TV, Mustapha Manneh expressed delight over his nomination, saying it will take the name of his ‘Their Voice Must Be Heard’ organization to another level.
“It is an award that will not only make me known throughout the continent but it is also going to give a very good name to the organization which have been doing good for so long,” he said.
As founder of the community-lead organization Their Voice Must Be Heard, Mustapha said his organization serves as the mouthpiece for the voiceless people of Kartong and the whole Gambia as they have been advocating for a better environment.
“We did our part to support the communities during the COVID-19 by creating more awareness, and also create awareness when it comes to teenage pregnancy, awareness when it comes to child marriage,” he added.
The recognition, he told Eye Africa, is the dividend for years of hard work in advocacy, dating back to when he was a teenager.
According to him, the nomination for the prestigious award is definitely well deserved, citing the trouble he went through as part of the people behind the Kartong sand mining saga in 2015.
Mustapha is from Kartong, a community affected by sand mining and fishmeal pollution, and is inspired to be a voice to the voiceless and a beacon of hope to the hopeless.
To him, getting another nomination after winning the 2020 Beakanyang Human Rights Hero Awards, is a further manifestation of his efforts to support the under privilege and the communities that are in serious trouble with their environment.
His organization’s goal for this year he said, is to end child abuse especially when it comes to ‘Daras and Madrasas’ found around the area of Jarra Soma.
“So winning this award is going to give us name and our effort to make sure that kids are in school not on the streets will definitely be materialized.”
He urged his fellow activists not to give up as activism is all about facing challenges, nothing that there will be no activism without challenge such as serious right violation.
“So they should work harder to make sure that what their people are going to need is what they are going to give them. That is, to be their mouthpiece.
“Also, to be there as cheque and balance for the government because they have to put the government to task. Ringing the alarm bell and making sure that people get better awareness that they need especially when it comes to their rights.”
“If I win this award, I will dedicate it to the whole country, activists and NGOs that are working tirelessly to end fish meal operations in Gambia and Africa,” he promised.
On 10th December 2020, he was awarded a Human Rights Hero Award by Gambians leading Human Rights NGO Beakanyang Kafo, and was also nominated by the Federation of International Gender and Human Rights as a nominee for the Peace Prize Children’s Aid and Help 2020 Year Award.
In 2018, he was invited by Greenpeace International as a guest speaker during their AGM in Dakar.
The Africans Rising Activism Awards initiative recognizes both individual and collective activism through the presentation of two awards: the Africans Rising Activist of the Year award and the Africans Rising Movement of the Year award.
The Africans Rising Activism Awards initiative supports and connects activists and movements in a global network of Africans committed to engaging in non-violent actions to promote justice, peace, and dignity for all Africans everywhere.
Mustapha is up against nine other prominent activists across Africa who are doing their part to promote justice, peace and dignity in Africa.
He therefore solicit the support of all and sundry to vote for him to bring this award home.
Please click the link below to vote https://africansrising.org/vote/