On Friday afternoon at the Al Fath mosque in Anderlecht’s Rue du Chimiste, a few hundred people attended a prayer meeting for Oumar Dansokho (25 years old) , the young man who set himself on fire on the premises of the Federal Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (Fedasil) on Thursday. The religious tribute was originally planned at the Guinean mosque on Schaerbeek’s Rue de la Poste but had to be moved for logistical reasons. The prayer for the dead took place after the Friday night worship. Oumar Dansokho’s closed casket was then placed in the hall of the mosque to allow family and friends to say good-bye. The body was then taken to Brussels Cargo and will be sent to Guinea on Tuesday.
Oumar Dansokho died from his burns last Friday at the Neder-over-Heembeek military hospital. He had gone to Fedasil to request medical assistance. He regularly took part in the protests organised by the Ebola group, an association of migrants from African countries hit by the virus. He asked for asylum in 2008. “This young man went through several procedures and really struggled: sleeping rough under bridges, etc.” notes John’s Mbulula, coordinator for Asylum and Migration at Mrax (Movement Against Racism, Anti-Semitism and Xenophobia). “He was a young man who hoped for a better life. There are many such desperate cases. To prevent further acts of desperation, we need human procedures and for cases to be examined individually.”