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In rememberence of Patrice Lumumba with his letter to the U.N. Special Representative on 4.1.1961

Patrice Lumumba

The first president after independence from Belgium in Democratic Republic of Congo was assainated on this day in 1961. That is why I have this post on him today as  rememberence of him. Because we should not forget his contribution to equality and freedom in DRC.  That is why I will add on his last letter written on 4th January 1961 from Thysville prison, the letter was sent to Special Representive A.M. Dayal, here it is:

Mr. Special Representative,
On December 27 last, I had the pleasure of receiving a visit from the Red Cross, which occupied itself with my plight and with the plight of the other parliamentarians imprisoned together with me. I told them of the inhuman conditions we are living in.

Briefly, the situation is as follows. I am here with seven other parliamentarians. In addition there are with us Mr. Okito, President of the Senate, a Senate employee and a driver. Altogether there are ten of us. We have been locked up in damp cells since December 2, 1960 and at no time have we been permitted to leave them. The meals that we are brought twice a day are very bad. For three or four days 1 ate nothing but a banana. I told this to the Red Cross medical officer sent to me. I spoke to him in the presence of a colonel from Thysville. I demanded that fruit be bought on my own money because the food that I am given here is atrocious. Although the medical officer gave his permission, the military authorities guarding me turned down my request, stating that they were following orders from Kasavubu and Colonel Mobutu. The medical officer from Thysville prescribed a short walk every evening so that I could leave my cell for at least a little while. But the colonel and the district commissioner denied me this. The clothes that I wear have not been washed for thirty-five days. I am forbidden to wear shoes.

In a word, the conditions we are living in are absolutely intolerable and run counter to all rules. Moreover, I receive no news of my wife and I do not even know where she is. Normally I should have had regular visits from her as is provided for by the prison regulations in force in the Congo. On the other hand, the prison regulations clearly state that not later than a day after his arrest a prisoner must be brought before the investigator handling his case. Five days after this a prisoner must again be arraigned before a judge, who must decide whether to remand him in custody or not. In any case, a prisoner must have a lawyer.

The criminal code provides that a prisoner is released from prison if five days after he is taken into custody the judge takes no decision on remanding him. The same happens in cases when the first decision (which is taken five days after a person is arrested) is not reaffirmed within fifteen days. Since our arrest on December 1 and to this day we have not been arraigned before a judge or visited by a judge. No arrest warrant has been shown to us. We are kept simply in a military camp and have been here for thirty-four days. We are kept in military detention cells. The criminal code is ignored as are the prison rules. Ours is purely a case of arbitrary imprisonment. I must add that we possess parliamentary immunity.

Such is the situation and I ask you to inform the United Nations Secretary-General of it. I remain calm and hope the United Nations will help us out of this situation. I stand for reconciliation between all the children of this country.
I am writing this letter secretly on bad paper. I have the honour to be, etc.
Patrice LUMUMBA,
Prime Minister

Source: Patrice Lumumba, The Truth about a Monstrous Crime of the Colonialists, Moscow, Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1961, pp. 68-69.

 

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Professor Lumumba at PAV Ansah Foundation Forum – “On the Subject of Governance!”

PLO Lumumba interesting as always! Right?

Ask ourselves! We should Ask Ourselves!

Peace.

PLO Lumumba – “We are Co-Authors of our misfortune”

Interesting, right? Enlightenment, right?

Peace!

30. June 1960 – Patrice Lumumba: Independence Speech (extract)

SPEECH AT THE CEREMONY OF THE PROCLAMATION OF THE CONGO’S INDEPENDENCE

June 30, 1960

Men and women of the Congo,

Victorious independence fighters,

I salute you in the name of the Congolese Government.

I ask all of you, my friends, who tirelessly fought in our ranks, to mark this June 30, 1960, as an illustrious date that will be ever engraved in your hearts, a date whose meaning you will proudly explain to your children, so that they in turn might relate to their grandchildren and great-grandchildren the glorious history of our struggle for freedom.

Although this independence of the Congo is being proclaimed today by agreement with Belgium, an amicable country, with which we are on equal terms, no Congolese will ever forget that independence was won in struggle, a persevering and inspired struggle carried on from day to day, a struggle, in which we were undaunted by privation or suffering and stinted neither strength nor blood.

The Republic of the Congo has been proclaimed and our beloved country’s future is now in the hands of its own people.

Brothers, let us commence together a new struggle, a sublime struggle that will lead our country to peace, prosperity and greatness.

We shall show the world what the black man can do when working in liberty, and we shall make the Congo the pride of Africa.

We shall see to it that the lands of our native country truly benefit its children.

I ask you all not to shrink from any sacrifice for the sake of ensuring the success of our grand undertaking.

The Congo’s independence is a decisive step towards the liberation of the whole African continent.

I call on all Congolese citizens, men, women and children, to set themselves resolutely to the task of creating a national economy and ensuring our economic independence.

Eternal glory to the fighters for national liberation!

Long live independence and African unity!

Long live the independent and sovereign Congo!

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