- Two Congolese civilians - Freddy Bisimwa and Masasile Rwezangabo - threw the military court into disbelief when they confessed killing Serge Maheshe, an editor of the UN-backed 'Radio Okapi' on 13 June in the South Kivu capital of Bukavu.
The men said they had been hired to kill the well-respected Congolese journalist. They were arraigned in court alongside 12 other suspects, including Serge Mohima and Alain Shamavu, friends of the murdered journalist accused of "aiding and abetting" the killing.
The killers explained how they were lured into the killing, saying they were promised US$ 30,000 and a plane ticket to South Africa. The real motive behind the killing is still a secret.
The attorneys of the fallen journalist's friends - Mohima and Shamavu -argued that their clients had merely been victimised to cover the truth surrounding the murder. They submitted for the transfer of the case to the civil courts. But this request was dismissed.
Few hours after the killing of the former 'Radio Okapi' journalist, two Congolese soldiers were immediately arrested. And without wasting time, the men were hurriedly paraded before the military court. This attracted criticisms from the rights groups.
The self-confessed killers exonerated the soldiers from blame and therefore called for their release.
Until his killing, Serge was the news editor of the Bukavu office of 'Radio Okapi', which has the biggest listnership in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
His death resulted as he tried to get into his UN-marked car in a residential neighbourhood. Three men holding Kalashnikov assault rifles reportedly shot him.
"They were ordered by the killers raise their hands up as they planned to enter into the UN-marked vehicles," a source confirmed, adding that the assailants asked Maheshe's friend to leave in peace before shooting him to death.
His killing has attracted condemnations from human and media rights activists.
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