Goma : journalist Jimmy Shukrani Bakomera released

Goma : journalist Jimmy Shukrani Bakomera released

Our colleague was released this Friday morning. He had been held in an ANR (National Intelligence Agency) dungeon in the city of Goma (capital of North Kivu) since midday Thursday. He was suspected of “collaborating with the M23”, an armed group considered by Congolese authorities to be “a terrorist movement”. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

Jimmy Shukrani Bakomera told SOS Médias Burundi that “I have been released, I am safe and well and I have not been mistreated.”

The correspondent of the VOA (Kirundi-Kinyarwanda) was questioned about his possible links with members and supporters of M23.

“I was questioned about the M23. I was presented with a list of M23 members, the majority of whom are Congolese. I told them that I did not know anyone”, he testified.

It was the local intelligence officer in Masisi who arrested our colleague in the Karuba area. He suspected him of collaborating with M23 when he found him interviewing members of Rwandophone communities living in the DRC. He was reporting on the voter registration decried by the civil society in North Kivu because of the prevailing insecurity in eastern Congo.

“People who speak Kinyarwanda have the right to express themselves and should not all be assimilated to M23 collaborators and enemies of the country”, said the journalist.

“I thank the media, the civil society, activists and others who got involved to get me released”, said Jimmy Shukrani Bakomera.

Since the resurgence of the M23, Rwandophone populations living in the DRC have been suspected of helping rebels and of spying on behalf of Rwanda.

The former Tutsi rebellion, which took up arms again at the end of 2021, accusing Congolese authorities of not having respected its commitments on the reintegration of its fighters, has recovered several localities in the province of North Kivu including Bunagana, the border city with Uganda, since mid June 2022.

Congolese authorities remain convinced that it enjoys the support of Rwanda, which Rwanda still denies.

Previous Rwanda-DRC : the Congolese army denies having provoked that of Rwanda
Next Burundi : authorities arrest the fifth activist, jail the team suspected of funding terrorism