By Mahalieka Muhammad
On Saturday, April 30, 2016 several men on a mission led by Student National Prison Reform Minister Abdullah Muhammad delivered seven pallets of water to inmates at Genesee County Jail in Flint, Michigan. Student Minister Abdullah was inspired during the annual Nation of Islam Saviours’ Day Convention in Detroit where the Nation of Islam Prison Reform Ministry hosted a workshop entitled “Prisoners Health-Justice or Else”.
During the workshop, he said, “I would like to donate water to the inmates in Flint Michigan” and within days of the conference, he was on a conference call with brothers from Project 2nd Chance led by Brother Larry Rivera, who said, “Be and it is!”
roject 2nd Chance is a 501(C) non-profit community organization and charity led by brothers and sisters who were once incarcerated. Brother Larry Rivera, director, was introduced to the teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad as taught by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan after writing Student Minister Abdullah Muhammad who said he “positively affected my life.” He thanked Brother Abdullah Muhammad who “fought on our behalf of our rights in prisons” But it was the tapes, video and the Self Improvement Study Guides and his love of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Divine guidance he gives that inspired him to dedicate his life to the resurrection of Black people.
After collecting their personal money and organizing the delivery, Student Minister Abdullah, Brother Joseph, activist Arthur Woodson, Councilman Wantwaz Davis, Brother Wesley Muhammad (N.O.I. Flint), Brother Joseph Frazier, Brother Frederick Muhammad and a few other men met at Genesee County Jail to deliver the pallets of water to all the inmates.
In 2014 local and state officials, including an emergency manager appointed by Governor Rick Snyder switched Flint’s water source from the fresh water of Lake Huron to the polluted Flint River and residents immediately began complaining about the look, smell and taste of the water. Later the water was discovered to be tainted with lead and other toxins causing illnesses in residents.
Regardless to who’s to blame or who’s responsible, men trained and taught by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan don’t make excuses they produce results, which is exactly what these brothers did. They all agreed something had to be done and quickly and collectively worked together to serve all the inmates at Genesee County Jail.
Student Minister Abdullah recognized that if the residents had high levels of lead in their water, certainly the inmates at a county jail may be affected too. He read news articles which stated that there were only “trace levels” of lead poisoning found in the pipes at Genesee County Jail but knowing the history of our open enemies, he wanted to make sure inmates had safe water to drink.
Many of the brothers involved with this effort are self-employed and actively involved in the community. Student Minister Abdullah believes they are “the first and only group of formerly incarcerated members and supporters of Minister Farrakhan and the N.O.I. to deliver water to the Genesee County Jail.”
All of the brothers said that their lives have significantly changed after hearing Minister Farrakhan and had words of love and appreciation for him and Student Minister Abdullah. Brother Joseph said, “On the eve after this humanitarian mission, we were blessed to meet and converse with our spiritual father, the Honorable Louis Farrakhan. A great reward for our striving! Thank you Brother Abdullah for guiding us throughout this journey. (We) love you!”
Brother Frederick said, he saw the 1995 Million Man March on C-Span. “I took the pledge, and have been doing my best to make my word bond.” When asked how this initiative impacted him, Brother Arthur stated, “The impact was huge because I was once incarcerated and I know the feeling of being in there. It let them know that people do care about them. They are still loved.”
For more information about the efforts of the N.O.I .Prison Reform Ministry, visit their Facebook page. For more information about Project 2nd Chance visit Project2ndChance.org