DECOLONIZING CANNABIS HISTORY – AN AUSTRALIAN CHAMPION ATHLETE’S PURSUIT TO RE-WRITE BLACK HISTORY
As of Friday, January 27, 2023, Héritier Lumumba was appointed “Head of High Performance & Strategic Partnerships” for the Democratic Republic of Congo’s National Rugby Federation.
The Federal Committee of the Congolese Rugby Federation (www.FeCoRugby.org) is a member of the International Rugby Board (IRB) and represents DR Congo in men’s & women’s international rugby competitions. The world’s largest French-speaking country has yet to qualify for the Rugby World Cup. The appointment of Lumumba is a strategic move to ignite enthusiasm for the sport among Congo’s youth and elevate the country’s prominence on the International Stage. 12 seasons, 223 games, more than 100 consecutive starts with an average of 99.8% playing time, Lumumba’s legacy is undoubtedly cemented in Australian rules football. His success on the field made him a powerful change agent forcing a long overdue reckoning with human rights and workplace equity within the AFL industry, Australian society, and the nation’s institutions.
He is currently developing a Docuseries that outlines the historical use of the cannabis plant among various African cultures. With cannabis now being legalized in over 50 countries for recreation or medical use, absent from the discussion is an awareness and acknowledgment of the inextricable link between historical use of cannabis on the continent of Africa and present-day cannabis practice among the African diaspora.
By examining the role cannabis has played in black communities over the past 600 plus years, Lumumba uses historical facts and data to debunk centuries-old stereotypes and falsehoods that fuel racial inequities today. Lumumba’s goal is to facilitate decolonization for those of African descent and restore the wealth of intellectual property that has been hidden for centuries. He plans to use his new platform to influence policy change and more research around cannabis medicine and concussions.
His first trip to DR Congo as “Head of High Performance & Strategic Partnerships” is scheduled for June 2023. He intends to spend the months prior learning the framework of high-performance programming within the walls of America’s top sports organizations. On his journey to decolonize and reveal Cannabis History, Héritier Lumumba is changing the game, one country at a time.