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Imari Obadele
President Obadele on a Chalkboard
2nd President of the Republic of New Afrika
In office
Preceded by Robert F. Williams
Succeeded by Kwame Afoh
United States Senator
Personal details
Born Richard Bullock Henry
(1930-05-04) May 4, 1930 (age 93)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
  • Marilyn Obadele
  • Vivian Gafford
Alma mater Temple University

Imari Obadele (May 2, 1930 – January 18, 2010)[1] was a black nationalist, advocate for reparations, and the second president of the Republic of New Afrika.

Early Life

Obadele was born in Philadelphia, and as a young man founded a civil rights organization there with his brother Gaidi Obadele. The two later moved to Detroit.

Republic Of New Afrika

Shortly after the murder of Malcolm X, Imari and Gaidi, and with hundreds of others others, founded the Malcolm X Society, an organization where members discussed independent Black governance, and eventually went on to for the Republic of New Afrika. At the meeting founding the group, they formed a provisional government. Obadele was designated the information minister, and soon published a pamphlet "War in America".[2] The organization's stated aim was to carve Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina out of the United States and establish an independent black nation from these five states.

The Republic of New Afrika also formed a paramilitary unit, the Black Legion.

Obadele and ten others (the "RNA 11") were arrested and charged in the wake of a joint police / FBI raid on the house in 1971. The raid culminated in a gunfight that killed an officer. It was later determined that Obadele was not at the scene, and murder charges against him were dropped.[3] However, he was convicted of conspiracy to assault a federal agent and was sentenced to twelve years in prison (of which he served five). Amnesty International described him as a political prisoner, and the group claimed that it had been targeted by the FBI because of its political views. FBI documentation that was later released confirmed that the agency was following the group. Internal FBI memos suggested that Obadele "be kept off the streets" and that he was one of the country's "most violence-prone black extremists".

After prison, Obadele went on to earn a PhD in political science from Temple University. He became a professor at Prairie View A&M University. His stepson is Ivory A. Toldson.



  • War in America (1968)
  • Revolution and nation-building (1970)
  • World history (1975)
  • Foundations of the Black Nation (1975)
  • The Malcolm generation and other stories (1982)
  • Free the land! (1984)
  • New African state-building in North America (1985)
  • A beginner's outline of the history of Afrikan people (1987)
  • America, the nation-state (1991)
  • The new international law regime and United States foreign policy (1991)
  • The struggle for independence and reparations from the United States (2004)
  • Essentials from America the nation-state (2000)


  • Help Us Build a Nation (1973)
  • People's revolt against poverty (1977)
  • Freedom and Power: A Letter to Mississippi's Black Leaders (1979)

Co-Authored Books

  • Black genius! (1991)
  • A Brief History of Black Struggle in America (1991)
  • Reparations yes! (1993)
  • Eight women leaders of the reparations movement, U.S.A. (2000)
  • The United States presidency and the struggle which shaped the character of the nation-state (2001)


  1. Martin, Douglas (February 5, 2010). "Imari Obadele, Who Fought for Reparations, Dies at 79". The New York Times. Retrieved February 7, 2010.
  2. Obadele, Imari Abubakari (1968). War in America: the Malcolm X doctrine. Malcolm X Society. p. 68.
  3. Donna Ladd (March 5, 2014). "Jackson Tragedy: The RNA, Revisited". Jackson Free Press. Retrieved October 24, 2018.