Fugitive DR Congo secessionist leader arrested: police

Wednesday March 18 2020

This file photo taken on July 2, 2013 shows Congolese police and UN soldiers standing guard after an incident at the Makala jail in Kinshasa. It was reported on May 10, 2019 that Ne Muanda Nsemi, the head of the Bundu dia Kongo, had been arrested and returned to the prison. PHOTO | JUNIOR D KANNAH | AFP



The head of a political-religious group advocating the secession of a southwestern part of DR Congo was arrested two days after appearing in public following a spectacular jailbreak, police said Friday.

Ne Muanda Nsemi, the head of the Bundu dia Kongo or "Kingdom of the Kongo" movement, "returned overnight to Malaka prison under police escort," police spokesman Colonel Pierrot-Rombaut Mwanamputu told AFP, referring to Kinshasa's central prison.

The movement, concentrated in the southwest, seeks the restoration of the former Congolese kingdom inside pre-colonial boundaries, which would comprise parts of Angola, Congo and Gabon.

Ne Muanda Nsemi escaped from Makala in May 2017 during a brazen pre-dawn raid in which more than 4,000 prisoners managed to escape.

He was on the run but made a public appearance this week on television.


The spiritual leader was accused by the government of former president Joseph Kabila of staging deadly attacks on state institutions between the end of 2016 and early 2017.