In the DRC, Lambert Mende’s Threats to Jail Moise Katumbi are an Insult to the Memory of the late Tshisekedi

On the eve of the late Etienne Tshisekedi’s return to the Congo for his state funeral, presidential spokesman Lambert Mende is threatening Moise Katumbi with prison if he accompanies the hero’s remains on route to Kinshasa.

Mende’s statement about Katumbi is both an insult to his friend and ally, the late Tshisekedi, and an illegitimate act. The judge who found Katumbi guilty of fraud later fled to Belgium, where she told the press that she acted only under the threat of death, and that there was no basis for the charges against him. The judge also informed the CENCO investigators that the accusations against Katumbi are totally false.

Mr. Mende should be ashamed of himself for profaning this solemn moment of national mourning for Etienne Tshisekedi.  He should also be ashamed of trying to put pressure on the CENCO that has responsibility for deciding Mr. Katumbi’s fate with respect to the dubious accusations against him.

Mr. Mende, be an adult. Your President and the people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo deserve to be treated with respect.