International Campaign Justice for Sankara

Press Release January 26, 2022

On Monday, January 24, 2022, closing arguments were to be heard in the trial of Sankara and his twelve murdered companions. Our lawyers’ collective was hard at work to finalize this effort that began a quarter of a century ago. However, a coup d’état occurred that day and the president of the court postponed appearances until the following day, Tuesday, January 25. The President of the Court then explained to the parties that due to reasons beyond his control, the session was suspended and he would return to the parties in due course.

Following the overthrow of the Compaoré regime, the new political regime had allowed the case to proceed. The trial took place before the Chamber of First Instance of the Military Tribunal of Ouagadougou, relocated to the Banquet Hall of OUAGA 2000. Following Judgment No. 06 of April 13, 2021, several persons were indicted and heard, whenever possible: in absentia KAFANDO Hyacinthe for attack on state security and murder; in absentia COMPAORE Blaise for concealment of bodies attack on state security, complicity in murder; DIENDERE Gilbert for complicity in murder, attack on state security, witness tampering, concealment of bodies; OUEDRAOGO Nabonswende, SAWAWADOGO Idrissa, ILBOUDO Yamba Elysee, OUEDRAOGO Tibo, BELEMLILGA Albert, Pascal Sibidi, DEME Djakalia, PALM Mori Aldjouma Jean-Pierre, TRAORE Bossobe, for complicity in an attack on state security; DIEBRE Alidou Jean Christophe, KAFANDO Amado for forgery and TONDE Ninda dit Pascal for subornation of witness; TRAORE Bossobe for complicity in murder; OUEDRAOGO Nabonswende, SAWAWADOGO Idrissa, ILBOUDO Yamba Elysée, for murder. Dozens of witnesses also appeared in person or remotely and the minutes of the deceased were read.

The trial, which the authorities refused to record, has so far been conducted in satisfactory conditions.

The ICJS insists that the trial should proceed and expects the new authorities to allow, in the best possible conditions, a full and fair completion of this historic trial. The ICJS also expects that the judge in charge of the disjunction on the international aspect could carry out his investigation and complete his case. This would allow for truth and justice to finally served and for a possible reconciliation.

The people of Burkina Faso and the whole of Africa deserve this opportunity to end this chapter of impunity.