Search for “suspects” in Murder of Catholic Priest in DR Congo Ongoing, Cousin Arrested

Late Fr. Godefroid Pembele Mandon. Credit: Vatican Media

The search for those behind the shooting and killing of Fr. Godefroid Pembele Mandon in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is ongoing, a security official in the country has said, and announced the arrest of some suspects who include a cousin of the late Catholic Priest.

“The first suspect we arrested was the cousin of the deceased Priest. He is under arrest with us,” Senior Superintendent Odon Kashala has been quoted as saying in a Tuesday, August 9 report referencing the August 7 killing of the Parish Priest of St. Matthew Murumba Parish of the Diocese of Kikwit.

“The other people we have arrested are still under investigation,” he said, and added, “We don't yet have confirmation of all these people; we can’t give you more details because we are still investigating.”

Fr. Pembele succumbed to gunshot following an attack on his Parish on the night of August 6-7 “by armed men at the Saint Joseph Mukasa in Kikwit”, the Vicar General of the Congolese Diocese, Fr. Kimwanga Francis, said in a statement.

He explained in the August 7 statement, “Fr. Pembele, who fiercely resisted his attackers, was shot at close range on the shoulder by these thugs who fled with goods and an undisclosed amount of money.”


“As we await the funeral program, we commend the soul of the deceased to your fervent prayers,” Fr. Kimwanga says in his statement in which he shares about the deep sadness of Bishop Timothée Bodika Mansiyai, the Local Ordinary of Kikwit Diocese, following the death of Fr. Pembele.

In the August 9 report, Senior Superintendent Kashala has said the search for culprits was ongoing and that “we will really deploy ourselves just to shed light on this heinous crime.”

“We must really invest ourselves to find out what happened and who did it,” Mr. Kashala has been quoted as saying.

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.