5 People killed in Senegal riot

Mar 8, 2021, 12:21 PM

Interior Minister Antoine Diome said on Friday in a statement delivered in the State TV that the 3 days of riots in Senegal, which starting on March 3rd to 5th has claimed 4 lives. Last evening sources confirmed the death of another person, making the death toll 5 in total.

"All those who have committed acts of vandalism will be searched for, arrested, prosecuted and brought to justice," he said in a statement broadcast by the Senegalese Radio Broadcasting Television (RTS).

According to him, the scenes of violence stem from a call for insurrection and a `ostentatious public refusal' of the leader of Pastef, Ousmane Sonko, to respond to the summons of the judicial authorities, following accusations of ‘repeated rapes’ and ‘death threats’ brought against him by an employee of a beauty and massage salon located in Dakar.

This posture provoked ‘voluntary demonstrations’ accompanied by acts of vandalism, which resulted in the loss of four human lives, as well as the looting and degradation of several private property.

Diome recalled on this point that the state of health disaster with a curfew is still in force while the ban on gatherings also remain.

"In spite of everything, conspiracies and acts of terrorism that amount to organized crime are being organised," said Diome, warning that all those involved will be hunted down and brought to justice.

He equally called for appeasement, while assuring that the government will take all necessary measures to maintain public order and the protection of property.

Interior Minister also announced an upcoming reduction in restrictive measures linked to the health crisis.

All those implicated in the acts of vandalism perpetrated during protests against the arrest of opponent Ousmane Sonko will be tracked down and brought to justice.

It would be recalled that demonstrators are asking for the immediate release of opposition leader Ousman Sonko, who was detained and arrested on the 3rd March following allegations of rape and public disorder. The case is expected to start today.  

Meanwhile, the lawyer of Aji Sarr, who accused Sonko of rape, Elhaji Diouf had his house, properties, Sonatel and Petrol Stations were burnt and vandalised.

Demonstrators destroyed and looted some banks, while many cars were also set ablaze. Two main TV stations namely, Sen TV and Walf Fadjiri were closed on Wednesday but later got reopened on Sunday. 

Similarly, Radio Futurs Medias, the radio was vadalised and car owners also had their cars vadalised, while the Sengalese government daily, Le Soleil was also reported vadalised.

Fuel shortage is being reported in the country, due to several petrol stations that were set ablaze during the riot.

In another development, schools are ordered close today Monday until March 15 as a result of the riot.