Therese Pakasa

Congolese activist

 

Therese Pakasa ( 1937- August 2018)

Remembered for

Known as the Iron lady and Mother of the “democratie renaissante”. She played a role in pushing multi partism in DR Congo.

Her story

Therese Pakasa joined the political socialist movement (PALU) in 1987.

Returning to Kinshasa, on March 8, 1987, she began a clandestine but large-scale campaign of awareness and mobilization helped initially by three women. She uses her home as a party headquarters.

Her movement aimed to challenge the symbol of the dictatorship: Its actions were translated by a surprise demonstration of women. In 1990, she challenged the President Mobutu by organizing a protest with semi- naked women on the “boulevard du 30 juin” to expose the current regime.

During her campaign, Therese has been arrested, tortured and sent to her village. At some point, her whole family with a two-week-old child were in jail.

The exile in her village allowed her to become aware of the glorious struggle of her ancestors against all forms of oppression.

She later tried to creates a political party inspired by Patrice Lumumba ideology.

Therese Pakasa died in August 2018