Belgium To Return Patrice Lumumba’s Gold Tooth 61 Years After Assassination 

The Belgian government has agreed to return the lasting physical detail of Patrice Lumumba’s body to DR Congo, 61 years after he was assassinated in Katanga.

Lumumba, a hero in DR Congo was the country’s first Prime Minister and the hero of its fight against colonialism.

He was assassinated on the 17th of January, 1961 and his tooth was removed by a soldier. His remains were not seen by his family or the Congolese people as investigations in Belgium said his body was cut up and dissolved in acid.  

A delegation of Lumumba’s family members and Congolese public office holders including Prime Minister, Jean-Michel Sama Lukonde are in Belgium for the event. It is considered Lumumba’s official mourning in Belgium.

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High Profile Burial – 61 Years After

Public tributes and the opening of a condolence book will be held on Monday, with Lumumba’s tooth to be placed in a box before being transferred into a coffin.

The coffin alongside the delegation will stopover in Kinshasa on Tuesday before travelling to Lumumbaville on Wednesday in the province of Sankuru, central DRC, Lumumba’s birth place.  

In Lumumbaville, named after the independence hero, there will be an official mourning to be led by Sama, the DRC’s Prime Minister.

The next stop will be Kisangani, Lumumba’s stronghold during his days and where his followers were known to form a resistance against the Congolese government after his demise. 

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Sunday June 26 will see the coffin in Lumumbashi where he was killed and will be taken to the village of Shilatembo, the scene of the crime.

The coffin is expected to be returned to the capital city, Kinshasa where flags will be flown at half mast and the nation will mourn their former Prime Minister until the 30th of June marking the date of the DRC’s independence.

The Patrice Emery Lumumba Memorial in Kinshasa will host the burial on the same day. 

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