Here is the story of how it all began with the founder of SAVEMNF.org, Rev. Josephenie Robertson
Miskitu Matriarch in Exile from Yapti Tasbia
“In 1957, the leaders of our nation at the time were my
brothers and uncles who were killed by the Somoza
Government, a tactical blow to weaken our fight for
independence and take our lands and natural resources.
Upon the demand of the Council of Elders,
the approval of the Miskitu Royal families of Kuum,
and the Miskitu people at large, I declared the independence
of the Miskitu Nation from Nicaragua and Honduras.
After dedicating my life as a civil rights leader and activist
to ensure the fair treatment, dignity of life and
sovereignty of my people, I faced the unimaginable.
In 1960, I was thrown in jail, threatened with a 72-hour execution or exile order,
with imprisonment or death upon return.
Within 6 hours, I vacated my home, leaving my beloved family,
friends, and nation. I left with the belief that I would be
of better service to my people alive.
After many years, in search of help for my nation, His Excellency Presidente Julio César Méndez Montenegro gave me, refuge, protection also work in the Guatemalan secret police then Presidente Carlos Manuel Arana Osorio allowed me to continue. Out of this unconscious tragedy, in my life, however, I stand before you and continue to represent my Miskitu people. As well as me, many Miskitu have left their lands to seek asylum in other countries because of persecution by the especially the Nicaraguan governments.
Not one day has passed in which I have stopped pursuing
the full sovereignty and international right to
self-determination for the Miskitu People.”
Rev. Josephenie Robertson
This story begins with an indigenous princess from a wealthy kingdom…
Rev. Josephenie Hendy Hebbert Clarence Tawaska De Robertson, Matriarch of the Miskitu Nation, was born in Silver City, Mosquitia on December 10th, 1943. She grew up with her mother, Lady Keturah Hendy Crown Princess of Miskitu Nation and father, originally from Sudan. Her mother was a midwife and holistic healer who traveled from town to town helping those in need. Her family – specifically her brothers -uncles were the heirs of the Miskitu Kingdom. They were all assassinated and their lands seized for their abundant natural resources. Her parents and the elders taught her the oral history of their nations.
Her kingdom has been living under oppression and threat of “extermination” since 1894. Her grandfather, Sir. Andrew Hebbert Sumu Sumito was a historian and curator of the king and founder of the first Miskitu Library, which was later burned as ordered by President Somoza. Her home was filled with love and respect–a stark contrast to the oppression and neglect by ruling governments both in Nicaragua and Honduras.
In 1957, She dared to speak out against her oppressors and rebuked the atrocities committed against her nation. Her bravery was ill received and the Somoza government (Nicaragua) jailed her. after being jailed, rather than deterring her efforts, it deepened her conviction and she continued awakening her people to their rights.
Again, in 1960 she was arrested and was put in front of a firing squad, given the option to be exiled permanently or face execution. knowing she would be of better service to her people alive, with her belief unwavering belief in god, she has relentlessly pursued the full sovereignty and international right to self- determination for the Miskitu People. She fled and met my Father, a French/ Haitian/Jew also an exile of François Duvalier…
The princess, now an exiled matriarch, continues addressing the plight of the Miskitu Nation. Her mission is to strive for a free and independent nation for her people, to reclaim the territorial rights to mineral resources such as gold, silver, pearls, mahogany, cedar, rubber, and lumber for the empowerment and prosperity of the Miskitu Nation.
The Nicaraguan Revolution encompassed the rising opposition to the Somoza dictatorship in the 1960s and 1970s. The Miskitu Nation’s plight for political freedom, human rights and the expansion of personal liberties has long been thwarted by widespread discrimination on behalf of governments, private organizations, and individuals with special interests.