Qwusu Yaki Yakubu (aka James Sayles) was an extraordinary human being. He died on March 28, 2008, at age 60 after spending almost 40 years in prison. Yaki was a revolutionary, a nationalist and an internationalist in the spirit of Malcolm X. He was an activist and theoretician, and a writer and editor of several influential journals.
Yaki gave leadership to the struggle to free the Pontiac Brothers, a successful fight against the death penalty, and he helped lead the campaign to free C number prisoners (hundreds of prisoners unfairly held).
A memorial service was held on April 5, an outpouring of love, admiration and respect from ex-prisoners, family members and many others, including JosÃ© LÃ³pez from the Puerto Rican Cultural Center who spoke of how Yaki understood that nationalism and internationalism must go hand in hand.
As one speaker said: â€œWe love you, Yaki. We love you for being a husband, a father, a friend and a great human being with a smile that we saw far too rarely. And we love you for being a revolutionary.â€