An amateur video released in early September shows members of a self-defense group abusing a child in the Pouytenga region of central eastern Burkina Faso. Active in the country since 2015, “Koglweogo” has already been distinguished by its violent abuses. This last video would be a symbol of the feeling of impunity that would animate them, our observer estimates.
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The video, which lasts just over two minutes, is difficult to maintain: we see a child, apparently very young, tied hand and foot to a wooden pole high up. His body is tied to a stone in itself, and the young boy cries and shouts in Moore, the local language when he is whipped with a quick, and the child is clearly suspected of stealing money from him. hand over to their parents. There is an exchange between the boy and one of the men present on stage:
– (Man) The money you stole, […] What money is it?
– (Children) It’s the rice money. It’s the money I stole to give to Dad.
– (Man) And your dad ate?
– (Children) It was my dad who gave me the money to buy Fanta and salad when it was stolen money.
– (Man) Is that why you ran like that in the sun?
– (Children) Yes. […]
– (Man) But are you aware that money is stolen or not?
– (Children) Yes, I know. I’ve heard people say it’s stolen money. It’s the money at the slot machines.
– (Man) You ate the money, where’s the rest?
– (Children) It’s Baba [papa, NDLR] who takes and gives me 150 FCFA on it …
– (Man) Do you know that they stole and that you will not tell?
– (Children) If I say that, they will hit me.
– (Male) Are you in the front line when we fly?
– (Children) No, when they steal, they’re the ones who send me to take the bag. I’m telling the truth. I never flew.
France 24 has decided not to broadcast the video, but here are some screenshots.
At the beginning of the video, a boulder can be seen attached to the child’s hands and legs.
“An incident from the end of August” according to a representative of the Koglweogo militia in Pouytenga
One of the representatives of Koglweogo of Pouytenga confirmed that the scene took place on August 30 in our editorial office. He explains:
The father of this child was suspected of stealing, and these militia members thought they could have information by doing so with their child, but that way is not good for us: he does not have you should not go after such a miner, and it was a mistake. It does not respect our commitments and it is not our job: our job is to fight bandits such as drug traffickers, perpetrators or robbers and to hand over the bandits to the security forces.
We arrested the people who did this. At the moment, they are with us, and we will soon hand them over to the security forces.
The Ministry of Women, National Solidarity, Family and Humanitarian Aid and the Ministry of Security contacted by our editorial staff were aware of the video. The first said that one would not make any communication on this subject at the moment, due to lack of information. The Ministry of Security did not answer our questions when this article was published, despite several reminders.
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