In July we published a press release regarding the case of our friend Rita Awuor Ojunge: after her disappearance was reported in April 2019 the police remained inactive for too long. The investigations begun in June 2019 – two months later – and only after mounting public pressure. Shortly afterwards, the remains of Rita’s body were found a few metres away from the Hohenleipisch refugee camp where she had lived until her violent death.

We demand justice for Rita!

On 25th November, the International Day Against Violence Against Women, we accompanied Women in Exile on their bus tour to Herzberg, Hohenleipisch & Potsdam.

Speech by Jennifer Kamau, International Women* Space:

Femicide, misogyny and Racism!

Why do I begin my speech with these words? Because Rita is dead! And she is another victim of this tragedy called feminicide! This men’s hatred of the powerful female gender! And Racism! Because as a black migrant woman, Rita was forced to seek asylum! Because she had to seek asylum, she was forced to live in isolation in this Lager! Because she lived in isolation, she was not heard when she called for help!

After being ignored by the Lager’s administration, Rita was brutally killed! After her death Rita continued to be ignored, this time by the police and the justice system! The police took two months to find Rita’s body! A body that laid 200 meters away from her room in this Lager! It’s been 7 months since Rita was killed and the investigation is not yet concluded! The neglect continues!

Right after Rita’s body was found, we came here. And like us, other organisations and individuals came here seeking for explanations. When we, from the International Women Space came, all we got was the usual disrespectful treatment these people reserve for foreign looking people like us! A look of contempt that tells us what Rita went through here!

Rita was never protected in this place! And the administration of this lager also has to answer for Rita’s death! We demand an explanation! Why a single woman, mother of two small children was left alone in her fear of being attacked! We know she reported acts of violence against her! Why nothing was done? And this is the story of many women victim of Feminicide! They do ask for help, but they are not heard until it is too late!

Today, on the day to combat violence against women, we are here to repeat WE DEMAND JUSTICE FOR RITA! END OF FEMINICIDE! And we are so angry that we already WARN YOU that we won’t accept any of the “the-killer-is-a-crazy-man-type-of-explanation” NO! The killer is a Misogynist! Aand we WON’T accept any of the “the-police-tried-their best-type-of-explanation” EITHER! Because we know that if Rita was a white woman, mother of two white kids, her brutal killing would be everyday on the news! That the police would have been forced to give quicker answers to this MURDER CASE! But Rita was black! And Rita was an asylum seeker. A Black refugee woman! Who cares?!

We are here to say that WE CARE! AND WE CARE A LOT! And we won’t let this case go cold! But the opposite! We will make this case visible! We are protesting today and we will continue! And we will scare the mysoginists around! NO MORE FEMINICIDE! POWER TO THE WOMEN! POWER TO THE FEMINISTS! JUSTICE FOR RITA!

Speech by Women in Exile: