The assassination of Floribert Chebeya human rights activist in Congo

The African Socialist International (ASI) strongly condemns the heinous murder of 47-year-old Floribert Chebeya Bahizire – an activist known and respected throughout the Congo for his opposition to the disastrous human rights in Congo – and his driver Fidele Bazana, whose body is still not found. Chebeya and Bazana were assassinated by the repressive regime of President Joseph Kabange Kabila and Police Chief, John Numbi. This double murder occurred on the night of the June 1, 2010 in Kinshasa, Congo.

Chebeya is not the first human rights activist to be killed by Kabila’s regime.  Many journalists and human rights activists have been killed since Joseph Kabila’s rise to power. In Kinshasa, those murdered include Louis Bapuwa Mwamba, murdered in July 2006; Frank Kangundu and his wife, Helene Paka, slaughtered in February 2006 and Tshimanga Ndiabintu, January 20, 2010.

Those murdered in the Kivu region were Patient Chebeya, April 5, 2010 and Serge Maheshe, 13 June 2007. We remember also the heavy bombardment of the Congolese population in the lower Congo region, which resulted in the death of hundreds of people. This assault on the people took place just a few months after the so called first "democratic elections in Congo."

According to the Democratic Republic of Congo human rights NGO collective, Mr. Floribert Chebeya Bahizire was the Executive Director of the Voice of Voiceless (VSV), Executive Secretary of the National Network of NGOs of the Congo (RENADHOC) and Vice President of the Inter-African Union for human rights in Central Africa (UIDH).

Kabila, who came to power as a result of the terror of the Alliance of Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Congo-Zaire (AFDL) , cannot maintain his power without terror. His allies include Rwanda’s President Kagamé with his Tutsi ethnocracy and Uganda’s President Museveni. These puppets represent the faces of the U.S. and European sponsored counterinsurgency warfare that loots without end in Congo.

To stop summary the executions and the culture of impunity, a Revolutionary National Democratic Program is necessary in Congo

We are calling on all freedom lovers and defenders of humanity to support our struggle for a just and honest world, to expose and oppose without compromise all crimes committed against our oppressed people in Congo.

To end the rule with impunity, we must first defeat the rule of collaborators who commit genocide and looting against Congo, We are calling on our people to get organized for a Revolutionary National Democratic Program, which will end the neocolonial power of the status quo and create a new state power in the hands of the revolutionary workers, in alliance with all the other progressive forces in society.

To put an end to the attacks against human rights and democratic activists by Kabila, Kagamé and Museveni, workers must build their own capacity for resisting neocolonial violence and advancing our struggle for self-determination. Our workers must learn to organize independently of any petty bourgeois influence, whether that in government or in opposition.

None of these petty bourgeois forces, including a tiny sector of it that pays lip service to the struggle for democracy, can really embrace the socio-economic needs of the people as their own and the struggle against genocide. The petty bourgeois class is essentially reactionary, which stands in the way of the emancipation of the African masses.

The political class in Congo looks only after its selfish class interest, at the expense of national interests. Personal enrichment and power are the driving motive of these retrograde forces. They have no consideration for the demand for social change that the people have been seeking for so many years.

Following the organization of elections financed by murderous imperialist, the Western media became busy praising “democratic rule” in Congo. The reality is that capitalism has failed in Congo. It cannot solve the basic problems of the masses of our laboring people.

It has failed to guarantee civil liberties, to deliver health care, to provide free education for all, to eradicate the destitution of street children – known as Chegue – to end the phenomenon of child soldiers and the ensure the right for our people to freely dispose of our own resources.

The starting point for revolutionaries is the transformation of the living conditions of workers and peasants, along with their social and political emancipation, and the end of imperialist domination of Congo.

Joseph Kabila behaves very much like the infamous Joseph Mobutu, who also received undying western imperialist support. Kabila has unleashed the killing of journalists and human rights activists, bombing of urban areas, and the arbitrary arrest of critics of his regime.

Kabila’s regime is a result of the U.S sponsored military offensive, which put Museveni in power in Uganda in 1985, then Kagamé in Rwanda in 1994. These two mercenary regimes represent U.S gunboat diplomacy in the region. It is trough them that the U.S removed Mobutu from power in 1996 and replaced him with Laurent Kabila, who was assassinated in 2001 and replaced by Joseph Kabange Kabila.

None of these three regimes are representative of the majority of African people living in those countries.

The presidency of Joseph Kabange Kabila is not a democratic expression of the Congolese masses. It is rather an expression of a new era of reactionary North American government in Congo.

All countries that politically, militarily and financially support Kabila are also guilty of the murder of Floribert Chebeya and all the crimes committed by Kabila’s regime.

We are calling all African workers in Congo and in Africa to unite to build the African Socialist International, the only force capable of putting an end to the genocidal alliance cemented by western imperialism and their African criminal puppets.

We must build a new era of liberation and unification of Africa under the leadership of African workers and peasants. The struggle for the Revolutionary National Democratic Program in the Congo is a fight against the neocolonialist State, which is defended by the U.S. and the micro nation-state system imposed by the imperialists in Africa.

This fight requires the active participation of the masses of workers and peasants. We must fight to stop the genocide being committed against our people in the Kivu, in defense of civil liberties and also for the right to have jobs, which emancipate our people and the country.

This is an uncompromising fight to mobilize and organize the exploited peasants and rural youths, who are ferociously oppressed in extracting minerals necessary for the reproduction of the modern capitalist system and the material conditions in Europe, North America, Japan, China and other parts of the world. It is a fight for a program that speaks to the majority of the people: workers, peasants and all other progressive forces in society, who agree to end the rule of the outdated and decadent compradors and bureaucrats of the African petty bourgeoisie. It is a struggle for the radical application of anti-capitalist and anti-colonialist measures.

We demand:

• Unconditional freedom of opinion and expression throughout the Congolese territory, the right for anyone to defend human rights without fear for their life.

• The establishment of an independent civil commission that will bring John Numbi to trial for the murder of Floribert Chebeya and his chauffeur, Fidele Bazana.

• State compensation to the families of Floribert Chebeya and Fidele Bazana

• The return of Bazana’s body to his family, so that he can be offered a decent burial.

• Release of all human rights and democratic activists imprisoned by the regime of Joseph Kabange Kabila in Congo

• The abolition of any prohibition of political demonstrations

London, June 5, 2010

African Socialist International

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