On the morning of Thursday, Aug. 29, political prisoner-of-war, Mumia Abu-Jamal, had surgery conducted on his left eye at an out-take eye specialist’s office to have a cataract removed. The surgery was successful. The following day, his eye doctor said “everything turned out well.” He is also scheduled to have the same procedure done on his right eye in about a month.
“He also went back to that eye physician for a day-after checkup,” revealed Mark Lewis Taylor, of freemumia.com. “All turned out well. Mumia marvels at the clarity that is evident already. He looked good and he was, of course, in great spirits. It was great to see him in such an upbeat mood and we spoke about some other matters even though time was limited.”
Although there was much skepticism as to whether he would have the opportunity at all to have his eyes treated in a timely manner, the overwhelming support and power of the people have come to his aide once again.
For the past several months Mumia’s supporters had pushed an urgent campaign for him to be treated for his failing eyesight. Thousands worldwide made calls, signed petitions and even made personal appearances before Pennsylvania’s Department of Corrections’ headquarters demanding that the medical procedures be allowed to be conducted.
“Everyone’s public pressure, caravan, phoning, press conferencing and all hard work has helped Mumia get to this point. He sends love to all. Best, Mark.”
In related news: For the past month and some change, members, as well as supporters, of the back-to-natural-living MOVE Organization have “expressed a growing concern over their inability to speak with sickly member Delbert Africa, 68, after he was transferred from SCI Dallas to a nearby hospital.”
About three weeks ago, MOVE members Carlos Africa and William Africa visited with Delbert Africa for a couple of hours, as a part of a contingent of 30 MOVE members who made the trip in a show of solidarity and support for their imprisoned comrade.
“We just wanted to put eyes on him and speak with him,” Carlos Africa said. “He’s weak. He’s got a lot of tubes hooked up to him and his legs are swollen because he’s having kidney issues. He’s got a long way to go. But for some reason, the prison had been keeping us in the dark about his health.”
Delbert has been imprisoned since the August 1978 shooting death of Philadelphia police officer James Ramp during a raid.
Fellow MOVE 9 member, Janine Africa, was released from prison earlier this year after serving 41 years. She said SCI Dallas officials ceased communicating with her MOVE family “on or about July 24.” The following week they were notified that Delbert was going to be moved to Geisinger Medical Center for treatment. He returned to SCI Dallas the week after.
“They would not tell any of us where he was and how he was doing,” stated Janine Africa. “We know now that he is back at SCI Dallas. But we haven’t seen his medical records yet and that’s a problem.”
Carlos Africa claimed SCI Dallas will only release Delbert’s medical records to next of kin, and since none of the MOVE members are blood related, nor married to him, they’re not eligible.
SCI Dallas officials commented: “His counsel is in touch with our counsel and they are communicating at this time.”
MOVE is skeptical of SCI Dallas being that Phil Africa, 59, died there in January 2015 after being treated at a hospital; he died shortly after being returned to his cell. The cause of death was listed as ‘natural.’ Same with Merle Africa, 47, who died in 1998 while he was being held at SCI Muncy.
“His death was not natural,” Pam Africa claimed. “This was an example of how the system hates MOVE and will do anything to try to stop MOVE.” Another reason for suspicion, Janine Africa contends, is that Delbert is up for parole later this month.
Delbert and Chuck Africa are the sole MOVE 9 members imprisoned. Four others have already been paroled