Sundiata Acoli Thanks Supporters for Birthday Wishes


To celebrate his birthday, shine a light on his long time incarceration and call for his release, hundreds of supporters of Sundiata Acoli participated in a successful birthday letter writing campaign. The 84 year old expressed great thanks in a letter sent to the coalition. The Bring Sundiata Acoli Home Alliance (BSAHA) received a warm letter from Sundiata thanking the hundreds of supporters who sent him birthday greetings.

“I thank each of you profoundly and sincerely for the hundreds of greetings cards and social media shout-outs you sent to make my birthday a truly happy one,” said Sundiata in a message sent to coalition member Bonnie Kerness. “I thank you one and all.”

There is little doubt that the staff at the Cumberland Federal Correctional Institution in Maryland took notice when Sundiata received more than two hundred and twenty-five birthday letters on his 84th birthday on January 14. He has been incarcerated for 47 years following a conviction in 1973. While becoming eligible for parole in 1992, he has been consistently denied his freedom for more than twenty-five years.

“The level of support this letter writing campaign received is so encouraging,” said Lumumba Bandele, one of the principal BSAHA leaders. “Sundiata is a friend and mentor to so many both inside and outside of the prison walls and this makes it clear that he’s had a positive impact on so many lives. More public activities like this throughout our campaign can be expected.”

The Bring Sundiata Acoli Home effort is the largest coordinated campaign to free Sundiata since his incarceration and follows years of behind-the-scenes advocacy and litigation. To contact the Alliance for a donation or to help, please email


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