In Kinshasa, police dispersed a student demonstration on Monday leaving nine injured, seven of them serious. Congolese authorities consider the use of force « unacceptable ».
These students took to the streets to denounce the increase in academic fees. Consequence of the application of a rate of conversion of the Congolese franc (FC) against the dollar which they consider unfavorable.
« We are protesting against the increase in the rate (which went from 920 to 1,700 Congolese francs against one dollar) for the payment of academic fees, » Pierre Kakule, one of them, told AFP. Last year, academic fees were set at 253,000 Congolese francs ($ 275 at the rate of 920 FC per dollar).
But this year, it takes 485,000 FC (285 dollars with the new rate of 1,700 FC the dollar). On the street, the students faced the police. « This morning, the police deployed several officers, they threw tear gas, » said Mr. Kakule.
« The police fired tear gas because a group of students attempted to leave the campus of the University of Kinshasa. As long as they demonstrate inside the campus, we will not intervene, « said General Sylvano Kasongo, police chief of Kinshasa, for his part.
And according to a report given by the police, 9 people were injured, including 7 serious, 11 people arrested, including 5 students, vandalized buildings including a bank and a burned vehicle. Figures that displeased authorities including Billy Kambale, Minister of Youth who believes that the use of force is « unacceptable ».