Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

26 August 2014

Central African Republic: Poetic Injustice - Untellable Tales of Human Flesh-Eating From the Central African Republic

analysis

In 1977, when Parisian designers oversaw the lavish coronation of Jean-Bédel Bokassa as "Emperor" of the Central African Republic, were they aware of his alleged anthropophagy? In December 2013, when French troops descended on Bangui amid rumours of cannibalism in the market, was irony finally claiming the spoils? Recently returned from Centrafrique, KEVIN BLOOM considers a story almost too macabre to tell.

"This information is true," said Captain Ahmat Nedjad Ibrahim. "Muslim flesh was eaten. They cooked the flesh in the market and ate it in front of the press. They prepared it a certain way."

And so there we had it, yet more confirmation that public acts of cannibalism had taken place in Bangui during the final months of 2013, and that these acts, which appeared intimately linked to the phrase "potential genocide," had played a central part in France's decision to triple its troop presence in a country that President Francois Hollande considered "the poorest in the world."

But if anyone appreciated the surreal twist here, the bizarre irony in the fact that France had once openly supported that most famous of alleged local cannibals, former President-for-Life Jean-Bédel Bokassa, nobody was saying a word--a circumstance concerning which we...

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2014 Daily Maverick. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.