Students Protest Police Killing of Maskless Student in D.R. Congo

University of Kinshasa campus students in the Democratic Republic of Congo continue to protest at the University where police are regularly accused of harassment and of pocketing mask fines received.

The protest is a demonstration against the death of a fellow student who was killed by the police for not wearing a mask while filming on the streets of the capital.

The schoolmate of the deceased student, Honoré Shama, could not hide their frustration.

Patient Odia, a friend who was present at the confrontation disclosed what transpired between the deceased and the police.

“Despite his (Shama’s) explanations and after having showing him a mask, the policeman, who was expecting to be offered money, became infuriated, accused him of resisting and shot him at point-blank range.”

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Other witnesses have confirmed a similar story.

The head of Kinshasa police, General Sylvano Kasongo while assuring the students that the culprit will be brought to book said, the policeman responsible is now on the run and the city’s police are searching for him.

“Police have detained two police officers, present during the incident provoked by their irresponsible colleague… as well as the head” of a local police station, he added

“The search continues to find the fugitive policeman,” Kasongo said.

Wearing a mask is obligatory in D.R. Congo, with transgressors fined 10,000 Congolese Francs (5 dollars, or 4 euros).

In Kinshasa, police are regularly accused of harassment and of pocketing the mask fines they collect.

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D.R. Congo has registered 47,786 Covid-19 cases and 1,021 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Vaccinations have been halted in the country since July 10, because the AstraZeneca vaccines in stock passed their expiration date.

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