The death of the Congolese gynecologist Gildo Byamungu Magaju, who was a close colleague of Dr. Denis Mukwege, highlights the danger everyone faces who stands up for the vulnerable in Congo. Dr. Byamungu was killed on 14 April at his home in Kasenga in Eastern Congo.

Armed men entered his house at night. He was severely wounded by three bullets and brought to the hospital in Uvira. Due to the severity of his injuries, it was decided to transfer him to the better equipped hospital in Bujumbura in neighboring Burundi. However, the convoy was unable to cross the border and Dr. Byamungu died on the way to the hospital.

Congolese doctors demand justice after death of dr. Byamungu

On Wednesday, about 2,000 people joined a march by Congolese doctors protesting against the violence and demanding justice.

Dr. Byamungu was a gynecologist trained at Panzi hospital by Dr. Mukwege. He had received death threats in the past and the hospital he ran in Kasenga was attacked several times in the last months.

“He was a visionary, a man of conviction who believed in the future of his country and his profession,” Dr. Mukwege said.

The murder of Dr. Byamungu highlights the level of violence in Eastern Congo. “This crime is the result of the absence of the rule of law and the institutionalization of impunity,” Dr. Mukwege said. Attacks include the assault of aid workers and doctors like Gildo Byamungu Magaju who has dedicated his career to improve the lives of the deprived.

The incident resembles a similar attack in 2012 in which Dr. Mukwege was violently attacked and his friend and security guard killed.

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