The family members of those who were killed in Wednesday 10 August 2022 violent protests in Freetown are demanding the government to release their bodies for befitting burial.

The violent anti-government protests led to 25 deaths and the arrest of over 100 protesters.

Speaking to BBC’s Thomas Naadi, the families expressed sadness at the loss of their loved ones and demanded for the government to hand over their bodies to them to be given the burial they deserved.

Marie Sesay, lost her 16 years old daughter during last Wednesday’s violent protests. She was hit by a stray bullet at home.

“I am very sad and hurt. I have struggle to take care of my daughter to this stage, and now she is dead. I feel a lot of pain,” she lamented.

The bullet first crushed the shoulder of an elderly woman who managed to survive and then hit 16 years old, Kadija Bah, killing her instantly.

The bodies of the 25 who died during the protests are reportedly deposited at the central mosque in Freetown.

Idris Bah, father of the deceased said they went to claim the body, but they were denied.

“I want them to hand over my child to me so that I can bury her. We are appealing for them to allow us that have lost our children to collect the bodies and bury them,” he said.

It is reported that the police opened fire at protesters who said they are angry at high cost of living in the country and alleged human rights abuses by the government.

Valnora Edwin, a good governance and human rights campaigner said they are concerned with the action of police officers to open fire and kill protesters.

“We were very concern. Even if the protesters became riotous, but using live ammunition was a bit extreme under the circumstances which we feel is very unfortunate,” she said.