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Police, Gendarmes Flee After Death Of Central African Republic Soldier In Bangui

The murder of a soldier in Bangui, Central African Republic, has led to a fracas in the capital city, with police officers running for their lives.

There was a commotion in Bangui, capital of Central African Republic Thursday, May 6, following the assassination of a national army soldier by yet to be identified shooters.

“People ran helter-skelter in various directions and even police and gendarmes who were supposed to maintain the peace took to their heels too,” a local source who gave his name as Kolingba George told HumAngle last evening in Bangui.

“Since nobody knew the enemy, the confusion was total. A semblance of peace only returned after Russian mercenaries intervened to re-establish order.”

Street mobs have announced their determination to avenge the murder of the FACA soldier as palpable tension continued in the capital as of the time of filing this report.

According to eyewitness accounts, the incident took place around 7 p.m. CAT in Quattin quarter within the Bimbo 3 council not far away from the 3rd subdivision.

“The seeds of the incident were planted some days back following the theft of a motorbike in the police post not far away from the Sagbado football field. The owner of the bike eventually found it yesterday with a young Peulh transporting passengers in the Quattin quarter,” said an eyewitness who gave his name as Georges Panza.

“The furious owner of the motorbike accompanied by a large crowd decided to take the alleged thief to the police post. But before the crowd arrived at the police post, the suspect’s accomplices appeared from nowhere, armed and started firing in all directions.”

“The shooting was so intense forcing the crowd that was taking the suspect to the police station to flee. Even police and gendarmes took to their heels as the firing intensified.”

“As the firing continued, a FACA soldier whose name was given as Samboli Arthure, who had been observing the scene decided to intervene. He was shot by the suspect’s accomplices and died shortly afterwards.” 

News of the soldier’s death caused panic as youths in Sagbado and Quattin quarters came out in their numbers to protest the killing. They blocked the roads and momentarily stopped traffic.

“Shortly afterwards, columns of police, gendarme as well as Russian mercenary vehicles arrived at the scene, forcing the youths to disperse. But they have promised to avenge the death of the soldier who was their friend, come what may,” Panza revealed.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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