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Monday, March 24, 2014

Problems and solution attempts

Monday the 17th of March
Since few days some young guys from the city who call themselves Antibalakas (although they never fought against Selekas) are in turmoil. They asked the Mediation Committee to place bars in and out of Bozoum. The Committee (including the Prefect General Secretary, the Mayor, the Priest, the Vicar, the President of Wali-GAla (women traders), all representatives of Misca, CAritas, Justice & Peace, MSF and Red Cross) has refused their request. But they went and placed them anyway, then used the excuse of MSF leaving Bozoum and took it on the hospital personnel, accusing them to force MSF to leave. Despite the Mediation Committee and MSF representative pointed out that their departure had been previously scheduled and they were needed elsewhere (Bocaranga, Ngaudaye and Bang) these self-called Antibalakas didn't stop their complaint and kept on threatening the hospital staff. I believe it's important not to forget these people at the Bozoum hospital have been working throughout the whole crisis, under continuous menace by the Selekas, the Peuls, Muslims and now the Antibalakas. Even during combats they ensured their presence and activity, they took in the sick despite threats (In January the Selekas even shot in the hospital grounds)
This morning the young guys in question occupied the hospital and kidnapped Mrs.Koikouma Marie Renée, she's the nurse in charge of the medical interim.
they came in with rifles and canes,threatened her life and promised to hurt the staff. Thanks to the MISCA intervention the guys left. They did manage to steal one door and shut down the hospital water pump which serve the sick and the residents.
Of course the hospital has been closed and the sick are now left to themselves. 
The Mediation Commitee invited this morning for their daily 8 am meeting all neighbourhoods' representatives who came in number. Goal of this meeting was to involve the whole community and especially these representatives, in order to ensure their effective reaction to violence and extorsions caused by these guys 
Every representative made a list of everything that's going on in their hood and we all decided to:
  • have a meeting in every neighbourhood to highlight every issue, especially those related to theft, weapons and drugs
  • have a Monday meetings with all representatives and the Mediation Commitee
  • elect a group of wise men to act and regulate conflicts and avoid that these selfcalled Antibalakas can be autoregulated
  • write an official document to the Governon and highlight this issue, the necessity of a new Prefect, and to have more police and armed forces from the Authority
  • open a call center for immediate assistance

Tuesday 18th of March 2014
I went to Bocaranga to purchase and distribute peanut oil in the surronding areas. I left at 6.15 am, and i stopped at the MISCA after the shooting of last night.
The situation seemed under control, however the guys i mentioned above shot MISCAs at 11 pm last night, thankfully nobody got hurt.
After 85 km I saw few people on the street with stuff all around.  Evidently they were Peuls who had been under attack. Only later we were positive: some Peuls, who were passing by with some 100 or 200 of their livestock had been attacked and their animal scattered or destroyed. Antibalakas did this.
I realized I saw many people on the way carrying meat and many cooking it.
All around this country  animals are being killed rather than being used as future investment. People wouuld rather kill and eat instead of thinking of tomorrow. In few months time, it will be really hard to find meat. Furthermore we must remember most of animals belong to the Chadians....

On my way back, I stopped also in Kake, 30 km from Bocaranga because i saw many Peuls there. Mostly there were women and children, who escaped here after the attacks of last Sunday and they did find some protection here. They're very tired and unhealthy, I tried my best to comfort them and asked the locals to bring them to a safe place and get them water. Once i got home i immediately advised MSF and the Bocaranga Mission so they will make sure these people will be looked after....
Wednesday 19th of March 2014
I went to Baoro with Father Norberto to a meeting with other Carmelitans from Bouar, Baoro and Bangui. It has been a year since we all gathered, it was a great joy to see each other again!

Thursday 20th of March 2014
Meeting at 8 am. Today it seems less tense, the hospital has been resuming its activities and yesterday some of the guys from last week offered their apologies....

Riunione con i capi quartiere
Réunion avec les chefs de quartier

il luogo del combattimento, dove gli antibalaka hanno attaccato i Peuls, che hanno abbandonato tutto quello che avevano
Scène de bataille: ici les Peuls, , attaqués par les antibalaka, ont tout abandonné...

Fiori di frangipane
Fleurs de Frangipanier

un vitello, appena nato e già rubato...
un petit veau, qui vient de naitre, et d'etre volé...

La concelebrazione della Messa a Baoro
la concélébration de la Messe à Baoro

Marie Renée, l'infermiera minacciata dagli antibalaka
Marie Renée, le major menacé par les antibalaka

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