Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) - "Dead City" in Butembo on the first anniversary of the assassination of Fr. Vincent Machozi, Assumptionist priest, who denounced the illegal exploitation of coltan in the region (see Fides 22/03/2016). Fr. Machozi was killed on the night of March 20, 2016 in the village of Vitungwe-Isale, 15 km from Butembo in the territory of Beni (North Kivu Province in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo).
The entire population of Butembo participated in the commemoration of the courageous priest, animated by the club "Fr. Vincent’s friends" who presented a video on the gestures of the murdered father.
A requiem Mass was celebrated at Lyambo de Kalemire parish.
Meanwhile there appears to be a light on the disappearance of the three Assumptionist fathers (Augustinians of the Assumption) of Congolese nationality, Jean-Pierre Ndulani, Anselme Wasikundi and Edmond Bamutute, who disappeared on the evening of October 19, 2012 from their Notre-Dame des Pauvres parish Mbau, 22 km from Beni (see Fides 22/10/2012). During the trial being held in Beni, it emerged that the three religious were abducted because they accidentally came into possession of a sum of money destined to the ADF.
According to a statement a parcel with money for the ADF had been brought by helicopter and then thrown on a field near Mbau where it was to be recovered by the guerrillas. A peasant picked it up by chance and brought it to the parish. But when the guerrillas found out what had happened they decided to kidnap the priests to recover the sum of money. The ADF commander did not specify the fate of the three Assumptionists. His story, however, is to be verified, and the court of Beni has not yet concluded its work. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 21/03/2017)