22 May 2017

Congo-Kinshasa: Confusion Over Opposition Leader's Funeral

Months after the death of the Democratic Republic of Congo's main opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi wa Mulumba, his remains have not been buried, reports for allAfrica.

Mulumba died in the Belgian capital Bruxelles on February 1, 2017, at age 84. The repatriation of his body remains a source of dispute between his family and his political party the The Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), as well as the country's government. The return of his remains was initially planned for May 12, but was again postponed - this time because of a disagreement about the burial site.

While the political figure wanted to be buried at his party's headquarters, the government is opposed to the plan, sighting a 1914 law that prohibits burials in residential areas for health reasons. The governor of Kinshasa wants the burial to take place in the town cemetery.

Secretary General of the UDPS, Jean-Marc Kabund, says the postponement of the funeral rites is neccessary as further talks with authorities are needed to reach a compromise.


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