Mauritania : former slave Habi Mint Rabah to run for office

Mauritania was the last country in the world to make slavery illegal, in 1981. ©Photo: RR

Casablanca, (ADV) – Once a slave, Habi Mint Rabah will be running for office in Mauritania in September’s parliamentary elections.

Habi Mint Rabah became a slave at the age of five. She was released from bondage in 2008, and will be running for office aiming to get elected as an MP for the newly established coalition of the anti-slavery group IRA-Mauritania and the Sawab party.

“Every day I had to take care of the cattle. Every night I was raped by my master,” Habi Mint Rabah declared.

I always thought, without really understanding, that it was normal,” she added.

Mauritania was the last country in the world to make slavery illegal. However, even though it was abolished in 1981, the phenomenon remains widespread as until today, 20% of the population is still enslaved.

Habi Mint Rabah was freed from slavery thanks to her brother who alerted human rights organisations as well as the IRA movement.

“She is a victim of slavery who we freed. She joined us, is militant, and will prove herself against the dominant pro-slavery group in the coming parliament,” IRA’s President Biram Dah Abeid stated.

Bur-csa – Oumaima Derfoufi – ADV with agencies