Bangui - Médecins Sans Frontiès (MSF) is deeply shocked and saddened by the killing of Paulin Langbazounga, a colleague from the Comité de Gestion Sanitaire (COGES). COGES is the local administrative body with which MSF collaborates in order to provide healthcare to the population around Zemio, south-eastern Central African Republic (CAR).
As in many parts of the country, in Zemio MSF works in close contact with other organizations such as COGES to implement training and to supervise and provide drugs and medical material.
The incident occurred on Friday afternoon 30th January approximately 20km from Zemio while Paulin was travelling from his village, Bahr, to Zemio by bicycle. While the exact circumstances of the shooting are not yet clear, Paulin was not travelling for work, a fact that suggests MSF was not specifically targeted in this attack.
Paulin, who was 62 years old, was the Village Chief of Bahr. He leaves behind a wife, children and grandchildren. Paulin was the Deputy Chief of the MSF supported health post in Bahr, and participated every day in outreach activities with MSF community health promoters. He was a valued and dedicated colleague and will be extremely missed. MSF extends its deep and heartfelt sympathy and condolences to his family and colleagues.
Civilians all over CAR continue to be exposed to high risks as a result of violence. The insecurity caused by various armed individuals and groups also represents a serious threat for humanitarian organisations. Zemio has not been spared the violence that has afflicted the rest of CAR, and the town witnessed a notable cycle of sectarian violence at the end of November that lasted several days.