Submit this form
Home News Videos Music Photos Facebook Twitter Friends Newsletter Podcasts Mobile RSS
Police impose curfew on Mbuji-Mayi after protests

KINSHASA, 18 May 2005 (IRIN) - Police imposed a curfew beginning late Tuesday in Mbuji-Mayi, a major mining town in central Democratic Republic of Congo, following violent demonstrations in which at least two people died and 12 others were wounded.

The provincial police inspector-general, Gen Jean Dieudonne Oleko, told IRIN on Wednesday that the "restriction of movement", as he termed the curfew, would deter vandalism and children from venturing out at night.

"The police has complete control of the situation," he said.

However, he did not say how long the curfew would last. The curfew runs from midnight to 1800 (1700 GMT).

He said the dead were civilians while seven of the wounded were policemen. The deaths occurred on Tuesday when police arrived to disperse the demonstrators.

"The police officers were wounded when demonstrators threw projectiles. Two of the civilian died from stray bullets when some demonstrators tried to seize rifles from police officers," Oleko said.

The people were demonstrating against an extension of the political transitional period, designed to return the country to democracy. The extension was announced on Monday following the adoption of the country's post-war constitution. Initially, Congo's transition was to have ended in June, but the agreement under which it was formed allowed for two extensions of six months each.

Congolese President Joseph Kabila said on Monday the electoral process would be completed in June 2005, taking up the two extensions provided in the agreement signed by Congolese parties and former rebel movements in April 2003 in Pretoria, South Africa.

The Mbuji-Mayi demonstrators were also calling for an end to political formula that gave the Congo one president and four vice-presidents.

Oleko said riot police intervened after the demonstrators ransacked and then burnt the offices of three political parties: the Parti du peuple pour la reconstrcution et le developpement; the Mouvement pour la Liberation du Congo; and the Rassemblement Congolais pour la democratie-Kisangani/Mouvement de liberation.

Other than the curfew and police patrols, the city's authorities have closed a radio station, Radio-tele debout Kasai, which they accused of broadcasting unsigned leaflets dumped in several towns across the country.

These leaflets call on the public to demonstrate and organise "dead city" days: days on which everyone is asked to remain off the streets, out of offices and places of business.

At the head of the demonstrators were supporters of veteran politician Etienne Tshisekedi, who heads the Union pour la Democratie et Social party (UPDS).

"There has been a wave of arrests of our representatives in Matadi, in Bas-Congo Province; in Mbuji-Mayi, and other cities because we have called on the public to demonstrate," Raoul Nsolwa, the UDPS national secretary for the youth, told IRIN.

By early Wednesday, police had cleared only some of the town's major streets of barricades.

Demonstrations also took place early Wednesday in Kananga, the main town of Kasai Occidental Province.

Related articles

  1. Felix Tshisekedi Sworn In as DR Congo President (January 24, 2019)
  2. Constitutional Court Declares Tshisekedi Winner of Presidential Election (January 19, 2019)
  3. Felix Tshisekedi Vows to Be the President of All Congolese (January 10, 2019)
  4. Felix Tshisekedi Elected DR Congo President (January 10, 2019)
  5. DR Congo Delays Results of December Election (January 6, 2019)
  6. Felix Tshisekedi withdraws support for joint opposition presidential bid (November 12, 2018)
  7. Jean-Pierre Bemba Returns to DR Congo (August 1, 2018)
  8. At least 30 dead after massacres in Ituri (March 2, 2018)
  9. Botswana Urges Joseph Kabila to Step Down (February 26, 2018)
  10. No elections in DR Congo in December without electronic voting machines: INEC (February 13, 2018)
  11. US Warns DR Congo Against Electronic Voting for Delayed Election (February 12, 2018)
  12. Felix Tshisekedi accuses INEC of illegally prolonging Kabila's mandate (October 24, 2017)
  13. DRC Seeks Arrest of Presidential Candidate Moise Katumbi (May 19, 2016)
  14. Papa Wemba Is Buried in Kinshasa (May 4, 2016)
  15. Papa Wemba Awarded Highest National Honor as Thousands Pay Tribute (May 2, 2016)
  16. DR Congo reach final of African Nations Championship (February 3, 2016)
  17. Political tensions 'running high' in DR Congo ahead of 2016 elections (October 7, 2015)
  18. Rights Groups: DR Congo Must Free Pro-democracy Activists (April 13, 2015)
  19. Police Open Fire on Crowd Protesting Election Law Change (January 19, 2015)
  20. Etienne Tshisekedi Evacuated to Belgium for Medical Treatment (August 16, 2014)
  21. 15 dead in football match stampede in Kinshasa (May 12, 2014)
  22. Kerry Calls on Kabila to Honor Constitution (May 4, 2014)
  23. Kerry in DR Congo for Security Talks (May 3, 2014)
  24. Security Council extends UN mission, intervention force in DR Congo for one year (March 28, 2014)
  25. Death toll in Lake Albert boat accident rises to 108 people (March 24, 2014)
  26. DR Congo Takes Chairmanship of COMESA at Summit in Kinshasa (February 26, 2014)
  27. DR Congo Honors Nelson Mandela, Hero and Model for Humanity (December 6, 2013)
  28. Kabila Congratulates Congo Army for Defeating M23 Rebels (October 30, 2013)
  29. M23 Rebels Kill, Rape Civilians in Eastern Congo: Human Rights Watch (July 22, 2013)
  30. DR Congo Eases Process for Starting a New Business (June 3, 2013)

Live TV Congo Radio en ligne Radio
Available on App Store
Get it on Google Play

Contact Us | About Us | Édition en Français | French Edition

© All rights reserved.