Floribert Chebeya was one of the most prominent and well-respected human rights defender in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
He was the Executive Director of the Congolese NGO “La voix de sans voix” (The Voice of the Voiceless, VSV), and the Executive Secretary of the National Network of Human Rights NGOs (RENADHOC).
Floribert Chebeya was assassinated in the outskirts of Kinshasa on 2 June 2010. His driver’s body, Fidèle Bazana, was never found.
On 5 March 2012, Mrs. Annie Chebeya, widow of Mr. Floribert Chebeya, visited Protection International’s head office in Brussels.
After one year and 36 judicial hearings, the Kinshasa-Gombe Military Court sentenced to death four police officers for the assassination of human rights defender Floribert Chebeya on 23 June 2011.
However, considerable uncertainties remain in this case, both as to the exact circumstances of the death of Mr. Chebeya and Mr. Bazana, and the responsibility of all the parties involved in the case. In particular the mastermind, or masterminds, of the crime. Furthermore, several convicts remain at large.
According to the families of the victims and Congolese civil society organisations and NGOs, the ongoing silence of the Court of Appeals in this case raises concerns about the impunity that surrounds crimes committed against human rights defenders in DRC.