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Memorial to Lassana Cisse: Death is part of life, but the way we die matters.

Read the full address of our President, Regine Nguini Psaila during the memorial at the Paola Mosque on Thursday June 16.

The memorial was organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

We are here today to commemorate A man who left his country of origin for a better life in a foreign land, a land that praises itself to be a champion of Human Rights.

In the said land, he found death!

Death is part of life, but the way we die matters.

We are here to commemorate Lassana Cisse because We all know that the way he died was cruel, unfair and most importantly, it could have been avoided.

Lassina could have died of illness or of a car accident, his relatives would have felt pain. But to know how he died, and why he died, not only his relatives felt deep pain, but the entire Black community in Malta was horrified.

As Black people, We know about racism, we know about unjustified accusations, we know about double standards, we know about the denials of many basic services, we know about abuses at work place: but cold- blooded killing was never before in the picture.

So you don’t have to imagine that Lassana’s death sent shock waves of horror 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 color.

Horror that the two men accused of his murder are free

Horror that It could happen again.

We know who are the real culprits, beyond those who pulled the trigger:

  • It is the careless political discourse that uses immigrants as scapegoats for votes.

  • It is the misrepresentation and the underrepresentation in the media of minorities.

Things can be different!

The entire African community here in Malta firmly believes that Lassina has not lost his life in vain. He died, so society will take note, so things will be different.

Let us bid farewell to Lassana, who I believe is here among us.

An African legend told by the brilliant writer Birado Diop says that the dead are not dead, They are in the tree that quivers, They are in the wood that groans, They are in the water that flows.

Let us bid farewell to Lassana, A man, a father, a son, deeply loved by his family who I believe will never forget him.


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