‘What better to intimidate the fash than with a black female rapper from Croydon?’
Anti-fascist protestors got down to grime artist Nadia Rose's "Skwod" yesterday in protest against an anti-immigration march happening in Croydon, south London.
In a now-viral video, campaigners, mainly from UK-based feminist group Sisters Uncut and Black Lives Matter, can be seen dancing and singing along to the track.
Fascist group the South East Alliance organised the initial rally outside Lunar House asylum centre, the Home Office’s HQ for UK Visas and Immigration, and around 40 members of the alliance marched holding signs reading “Immigration ruined our NHS and social housing” and “Say no to sharia”.
Tensions have been high in the area following the brutal beating of 17-year-old Kurdish-Iranian boy Reker Ahmed in April, who almost died after a suspected hate attack, but more than 400 people turned out as part of a counter-rally organised by Movement for Justice by Any Means Necessary.
Nadia Rose, who is Stormzy's cousin, grew up in the borough and filmed the video for "Skwod" in the area. She responded to the video in a tweet whilst allegedly being arrested in an unrelated incident in Croydon.
Melissa Sur, 20, filmed the video. She said: "I attended the march because fuck fascists thinking they can be in Croydon, mate. Croydon was the first place I lived in when I moved to the UK (because as an immigrant, it was convenient that the Home Office was so near). I went to school there, I came out there, and for a long time Croydon was home. What better to intimidate the fash than with a black female rapper from Croydon?"
"I went to the march because Croydon is my hometown," added Saskia Zeta Reed, also 20, a Sisters Uncut campaigner who can be seen dancing in the video.
"Yesterday when the fascists turned up, there were hoards of us there ready to demonstrate, and it felt so centring to see people defend Croydon as if it was their own.
"‘Skwod’ was one of my favourite moments. It was when all the non-binary people, femmes and girls, mainly from Sisters Uncut, took up space dancing. It's so important to make activism joyful. Nadia Rose is from Croydon so it felt right to blast it over whatever the fascists were trying to play. It was about us in the end, not them."
Watch the official "Skwod" video below