Home > Press Release > PRESS RELEASE: ARREST OF MR MODESTE BOUKADIA, BRAZZAVILLE (CONGO)
Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen
The French Association for the Support of Political Prisoners in Congo – Brazzaville (AFSPP-CB) wishes to inform you that Mr. Modeste Boukadia has been arrested in Brazzaville, Congo, on 15 January 2016 at 6.30 pm. As soon as the Air France Flight 896 that carried him back to his homeland landed at Maya-Maya airport in Brazzaville, Mr Boukadia was handcuffed and hurried to Pointe-Noire state prison without being presented to a judge in Brazzaville. Mr. Modeste Boukadia is the elected President of the National Council of Southern Congo (CNESC – Conseil National du Sud Congo) and the President of political party Circle of Democrats and Republicans in Congo (CDRC – Cercle des Democrates et Republicains du Congo)
Mr. Boukadia was arrested by virtue of a conviction in absentia to 30 years hard labor pronounced on 9th April 2014. The arrest took place despite the fact the conviction was disavowed by the UN Human Rights Council on its 71th session on 17th to 21st November 2014 (Working Group for Arbitrary Detentions) with full notification of Congolese authorities.
Mr. Boukadia was arrested by an unnecessarily large military convoy, including more than 1,200 armed soldiers, over a hundred armored vehicles. Such ridiculous display of violence without common measure fuels risks of violence in Congo – Brazzaville and in the already fragile Central African Region.
The AFSPP-CB asks the International Community to uphold the opinion No. 22/2014 of the UN Human Rights Council (WGAD) which explicitly recommends that the Republic of the Congo – Brazzaville ” proceed without waiting to the release of all political prisoners of the CDRC detained and take steps to remedy the moral and material damage “.
His Excellency Mr. Modeste Boukadia was sentenced because he requested the formation of a Government of National Unity to achieve national unity between the north and south of the Congo and ensure good governance. Such a sentence becomes a de facto admission of the existing system that enslaves citizens of the southern part of the country, and who are excluded by 98% of the country’s civil and military command.
Knowing the importance you place in the universal values of human rights and the promotion of democracy, particularly in Africa, AFSPP-CB asks the International Community to demand strongly and by legal right the immediate and unconditional release of His Excellency Mr. Modeste Boukadia, under the judgment of 9 April 2014 rendered null and void by the international community who informed His Excellency Modeste Boukadia on January 8, 2015.
His Excellency Mr. Modeste Boukadia was the only Congolese Authority present at the National Commemoration for the day of “Charlie” that took place in Parison 11 January 2015. On that day he gave
interviews to three US and French media presenting the sincerest condolences of the Congolese people to the victims of the terrorist attack. A year later, he has been arrested like a terrorist by the Homeland Security forces (DST) in Congo-Brazzaville.
After his unspeakable arbitrary arrest and questioned by the Congolese DST about his relations with Presidents Obama and Hollande, His Excellency Mr. Modeste Boukadia told them that “being a defender of Democracy, he was the friend of all Presidents. who hold dear Republican and Democratic values “, thus highlighting the inconsistency of the current governance in sentencing him to THIRTY (30) YEARS of hard labor in absentia for requesting a government of national unity between the North and South.
In December 8, 2015 President Boukadia wrote to His Excellency Ban Ki-moon that he returned to Congo Brazzaville “not as President of the CDRC, but as the legal Political Authority of Southern Congo, to bring peace and stability to the country, although sentenced for asking the National Union between the North and South, not wanting to see his people take up arms, which would be the worst scenario, PLEASE act according to international law, according to our sovereign right “.
These are principles he applies to himself, returning to his native country with the courage of a patriot among the greatest, and worthy of President Nelson Mandela, His Excellency Mr. Boukadia, President of the National Council of Southern Congo, being jailed, detained and treated as a terrorist in Pointe-Noire prison. This cannot be tolerated in the name of the International Community funded on democratic and republican principles. His Excellency, Mr. Boukadia embodies the very Spirit of President Nelson Mandela.