The testimony of one of the students who made racist remarks at the Ecole Centrale de Lille

The management of the Centrale Lille school seized the prosecution after the discovery of racist remarks and images in a private discussion group of some of its students. One of them testifies.

In the aftermath of the revelation of the existence of a discussion group “private” on Facebook Messenger, on which racist remarks were published, the management of the Ecole centrale de Lille explains why it made a report to the public prosecutor on December 22 and launched disciplinary proceedings against the students concerned. One of them agreed to testify.

Because of guilt, a student from the Central School agrees to testify but anonymously. He is one of the 30 members of this private discussion group on which these racist messages were exchanged. He hasn’t written anything and talks about humor among friends.

video length: 19sec

A student from the Central School agrees to testify but anonymously because of guilt.

©France Televisions

Some comments made on this group, entitled “CentRacism“, had been made public by a second-year student of the engineering school, Amara, a fortnight ago on Instagram.

We see hijacked images of the slave trade, as well as references to the death of the African American George Floyd or to Nazism.

I invite you to let the whole of France know that in great schools like the Ecole Centrale de Lille there is pure racism.“, denounces the young man in a video on the social network.

He explains “to have come across this secret conversation of about thirty students from his school“, first-year students.

I feel insulted“, “the black community is considered inferior and the fact that we are present in the school and they continue to laugh at it in our presence is even more insulting“, he confided to AFP, deploring the “feeling of impunityof these students.

The large schooleach promotion of which has around 300 students, assures in a message on its Facebook page “condemn in the strongest possible terms the use of racist remarks by students“.

Questioned by us, the management of Centrale Lille explains the reasons for which it decided to make a report: ” The serious facts on which the management was questioned constitute an offense under the penal code. We have acted in accordance with our ethics and our values ​​which are: Audacity, Exigence and Respect. And in line with our commitment to fight against all forms of discrimination.

As for the sanctions that will be decided: ” On the criminal level, the decision rests with the prosecutor. The facts may be an offense punishable by a class 5 fine (1500 euros fine). On the disciplinary level, in accordance with the education code, the decision rests with the disciplinary commission of the establishment. The sanction must be individualized, according to the degree of active participation in the exchanges.

1. The warning;

2. Blame;

3. A community service type accountability measure;

4. Exclusion from the establishment for a maximum period of five years. This sanction may be suspended if the exclusion does not exceed two years;

5. Definitive exclusion from the establishment;

6. Exclusion from any public institution of higher education for a maximum period of five years;

7. Definitive exclusion from any public establishment of higher education.

The education code also specifies the composition of the disciplinary committee:

The president of the disciplinary section composes for each case a disciplinary committee which includes 8 members from the board of directors.

Legal and disciplinary proceedings are ongoing.“, finally specifies the management of the establishment, “Legally we must respect them. Centrale Lille will apply the sanctions which will be recorded by the disciplinary committee.”

The testimony of one of the students who made racist remarks at the Ecole Centrale de Lille