North Kivu Civil Society reaction / Urgent Appeal
As a reaction to the unfounded accusations and in response to Mr Guy Mbayma’s letter, civil society actors wrote an urgent appeal against the threats to environmental defenders in North Kivu. They fear that their members on the ground and in Goma suffer death threats, arbitrary arrests, illegal detentions and torture by those who do not want that the local communities and the Civil Society of North-Kivu express their opinion on the oil exploration and exploitation project in ViNP freely. They also see a clear reduction in the scope of actions by civil society organisations commenting on oil development in the Great Lakes Region.
As a reminder, the Constitution of the Democratic Republic of Congo guarantees the freedom of thought, expression, demonstration and association in Articles 22, 23, 26, 37 and 61.
Civil Society of North-Kivu requests the competent authorities to accord a special protection to its members, in particular to the members of Reseau CREF, IDPE, CREDDHO, SOPR, EST and the parties responsible for the provincial coordination of civil society in North-Kivu.
Thank you for calling and writing to the authorities of the DRC to ask them:
(i) To ensure the protection of civil society’s actors and to conduct an immediate, efficient, exhaustive, independent and impartial investigation into these accusations outlined in the letter written by the Director of Technology and Science at the ICCN.
(ii) To guarantee the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms throughout the country in accordance with the national law and international instruments of human rights.
(iii) To protect local communities, primary beneficiaries of civil society actions and the NGOs partners of the Congolese government.