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A memorial to Lassana Cisse but his alleged murderers are free on bail

Cisse was killed three years ago in a drive-by shooting and justice is yet to be served.

Opening prayer at the memorial of Lassana Cisse on June 16th at Paola Mosque

The memorial took place on Thursday 16th at the Paola Mosque.

Addressing the audience after the opening prayer, Dr Maria Pisani from Integra Foundation and fierce advocate for Human rights said that Lassana’s death was more than a source of despair or grief, “ it is a crime, a murderous, brutal and viscous crime”, she read.

Pointing at Institutional racism as an ongoing source of violence against people of colour in Malta, she went on saying that confronting it is “not just about strategy papers, printed brochures, soundbites and a couple of articles in the media, change is about investment, commitment, transparency, accountability, integrity and leadership”.

She called upon policy makers to do better, because “racism killed Lassana, and the institutions that were established to protect each and every one of us, failed to protect him. They failed Lassana, they failed his family, and they failed the broader community”, she said.

The African community was represented by African Media. In her address, the President of the association recalled that Black people in Malta were familiar with racism, unjustified accusations, double standards, denials of many basic services, abuses at work place, “but cold blooded killing was never before in the picture”, she said.

She mentioned the “shock waves of horror” that Cisse’s death had sent in the migrant communities, “ Horror that today, after the abolition of slavery, after the end of colonialism, people can still loose their lives for the fact that they were born with a dark skin colour, horror that the two men accused of his murder are free, horror that It could happen again” she said.

She continued by identifying who she believes are the real culprit of Cisse’s death beyond those who hit the blow, “It is the careless political discourse that uses immigrants as scapegoats for votes and the misrepresentation and the underrepresentation of minorities

in the media”. “Cisse paid a heavy price, so things can be different, '' she added.

The ceremony was opened by Iman Mohammed El Sadil who led a short prayer and shared with the audience his beliefs that Maltese are welcoming people and that the murder of Cisse does not represent the Maltese society. He called for justice to be served and expressed the wish for younger generations to be more mindful with multiculturalism.

Mgr Scicluna said that disrespect of life had caused Lassana Cisse's death, he begged for God's forgiveness.

Many NGO representatives were present, together with representatives from the government, among which Parliamentary Secretary Rebecca Buttigieg. Walter Haßmann, Germany’s Ambassador to Malta was also present.

The Memorial was organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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