This year we continue to mark the anniversary of Andrew’s untimely death in Petriky forest in Madagascar and to reflect on Andrew’s environmental campaigning work and his empowering approach to community activism.
On the anniversary date (Dec 31st 2014) The ecologist published an article about Andrew online, remembering Andrew’s talents and reflecting on his reason for going to Madagascar in 1994 – his concerns about the Rio Tinto mine – and reviewing whether his concerns were justified twenty years on. See : http://www.theecologist.org/campaigning/2625160/andrew_lees_20_years_after_his_last_mission_to_madagascar.html#1
Traditional Malagasy Memorial
January 2015 , A family donation was sent to Madagascar to enable a traditional ceremony to mark the anniversary of Andrew’s death.
The ALT Mg team visited the traditional stone in Petriky forest which marks where Andrew fell – it is a sacred /taboo area now, as locals believe that Andrew’s spirit resides in the forest. The ALT team carried out the traditional rites and then gathered with friends at Libanona to share in a ‘family’ meal and reflect on Andrew’s visit to Madagascar and the work that has been done in his name.
A local Pasteur who participated at the event said :
Andrew’s death has given us an opportunity to work for the good of the community.