Another Barotse riots detainee dies

Another Barotse riots detainee dies

Another former Barotse detainee has died from a health condition that relatives say manifested shortly after his release from Mumbwa Prison where he was remanded over the Barotseland Agreement-related Mongu riots.

A scene during Mongu riots in January

Family members confirmed to The Post in Mongu that 26-year-old Pelekelo Likezo died at his Malelekwa home at around 19:00 hours on Tuesday after succumbing to his illness.

The deceased’s brother, Lubinda Likezo said in an interview as sympathisers were waiting to take his body to Mongu Central Police and subsequently to Lewanika General Hospital Mortuary that Pelekelo was not in poor health when he was taken to Mumbwa Prison over the Mongu riots.

‘My brother was arrested on January 14, 2011 over these Linyungandambo riots. When he came back he stayed for about a month and he started having a problem of dizziness,’ said Lubinda as his brother’s body lay on the roadside on a thin mattress with sombre-looking people surrounding it.

‘He was admitted to hopsital on April 3, 2011 and after two weeks he started having fits and looking like someone who was getting confused.”

Lubinda said his brother was discharged from Lewanika General Hospital on April 16, 2011.

‘About a week later the fits started again and he was taken to the hospital again. He was admitted and within a week, he was discharged again. The problem never stopped until after five days. Today afternoon we started noticing that he was not okay,’ Lubinda said.

Lubinda said doctors at Lewanika Hospital had advised the family to take Pelekelo to the University Teaching Hospital UTH for specialist medical attention.

‘But we told them that we had financial difficulties to do that, said Lubinda. ‘We were still trying to do that when he died. My brother was okay when he was taken to Mumbwa over the Mongu riots.

Pelekelo’s death brings the death toll of Barotse detainees to four within three months.

On April 18, 2011, 70-year-old Mwiya Sihope died in Lewanika Hospital early this year as a consequence of health complications that developed whilst detained in Lusaka Central Prison on a treason charge.

On April 22, 2011, 16-year-old Kabayo Kabayo died from suspected septicemia whilst detained in Mumbwa Prison awaiting the disposal of his court case in the Mumbwa surbodinate court.



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