DRC Bishop robbed and threatened by gunmen

by
15 April 2010

by Bill Bowder

THE Bishop of Bukavu, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Rt Revd Sylvestre Bahati Bali-Busane, was threatened with death by gunmen during a raid on his house on Friday.

Bishop Bahati said in an email to partner churches after the robbery that the gunmen had forced their way into his home in the early hours, looting the property and leaving with money, clothes, and electronic equipment. They assaulted the security man on duty.

He said that the robbers had told him that they had been paid $US20,000 “to assassinate the Anglican bishop of Bukavu diocese”. When the Bishop pleaded with the gunmen to spare his life, they demanded money, which he gave them.

On Easter Day, rebels attacked Mbandaka, the capital of the Equatorial Province in the DRC, said the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Mbandaka-Bikoro, the Most Revd Joseph Kumuondala Mbimba.

In a report on the RC press agency Agenzia Fides, the Arch­bishop said: “The rebels came while the parishes of the archdiocese were celebrating Easter mass. It was a sudden attack which took everyone by surprise.”

The rebels had crossed the Congo River and headed for the Provincial Assembly, the governor’s residence, and the airport, he stated. They had been driven out by the Congolese army and UN MONUC troops. There had been casualties on both sides.

Sanctuary: aid distribution in the village of Murungu (pictured above), in the High Plateau of eastern Congo. The village has become a safe haven for many families displaced by violence over recent months. ARM Congo, a local partner of World Emergency Relief, provides supplies. www.wer-uk.org

Forthcoming Events

21-22 February 2020
Church Times Festival of Faith and Literature
For 2020 the Bloxham festival celebrates ‘The Power of Love’. Tickets available next month. More details

26 March 2020
Theology Slam Live Final
Competition opens in November - more details coming soon. Read about the 2019 final

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read five articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)