Submit this form
Home News Videos Music Photos Facebook Twitter Friends Newsletter Podcasts Mobile RSS
Live up to your promises or lose recent gains, Kabila urged

Photo: Tiggy Ridley/IRIN
Supporters of Joseph Kabila at the voting station at St Anne Cathedral in Kinshasa, DRC, 30 July 2006
NAIROBI, 6 July 2007 (IRIN) - The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) could lose recent gains in its democratisation process unless President Joseph Kabila starts to promote dialogue and accountability, and strengthens cooperation with the wider international community, the International Crisis Group (ICG) has warned.

The report, Congo: Consolidating the Peace, issued by the ICG on 5 July, warns that while the transition period, which ended with elections six months ago, helped to unify the country and improved security in some areas, governing institutions had remained weak, abusive or non-existent.

The national army, it added, was still the worst human rights abuser while another crisis is looming in the east.

"Despite Kabila's strong mandate, the last months have seen the rapid paralysis of the state machinery, increased authoritarian tendencies and no decisive progress in the restoration of peace in the Kivus," said David Mugnier, ICG's Central Africa project director.

"Kabila and Prime Minister Antoine Gizenga need to acknowledge the shortcomings of the last months," the report stated.

"A return to full-scale war is unlikely but violence in Bas-Congo and Kinshasa in early 2007 with over 400 people killed and renewed threats of war in the Kivus show the country's fragility," it added.

Role for opposition

The ICG called for conditions that would allow for the return of opposition leader, Jean-Pierre Bemba, and greater freedoms for parliament, the courts and media.

"Despite late but commendable efforts to grant it more space in parliament, the opposition's capacity to play that role remains severely undermined by the recurrent use of force against its supporters and the exile of Jean-Pierre Bemba, the main challenger to President Kabila during the recent election," the ICG said. "The opposition's virtual exclusion from governorships despite winning five provincial assembly elections is another sign of shrinking political pluralism."

On the volatile situation in North and South Kivu, the ICG called for urgent diplomacy and dialogue. "Much remains to be done to turn the army and police into competent, confidence-inspiring forces that can provide stability and tackle lawlessness, especially in the militia-dominated east," it noted.

''Much remains to be done to turn the army and police  into competent, confidence-inspiring forces that can provide security and tackle lawlessness''
It said the security situation in areas such as Ituri was better, but there had been little progress in disarming militia groups in the Kivus.

Kabila was elected president in 2006 after 40 years of authoritarian rule by Mobutu Sese Seko. Before being elected, he headed an interim administration that replaced his father, Laurent Desiré Kabila, who was assassinated in 2001 after toppling Mobutu.

At his inauguration, the 35-year-old Kabila promised to provide leadership and good governance during his five-year stewardship.

"The way forward lies in strengthening democratic governance," the ICG said. "Reform requires genuine political will to tackle impunity by vetting police and army officers and making courts independent."

Related stories


Related articles

  1. 'Deadly environment' plus 'political and social' obstacles hinder Ebola fight, Security Council hears (July 24, 2019)
  2. Ebola outbreak declared an international Public Health Emergency (July 17, 2019)
  3. Felix Tshisekedi Sworn In as DR Congo President (January 24, 2019)
  4. Constitutional Court Declares Tshisekedi Winner of Presidential Election (January 19, 2019)
  5. Felix Tshisekedi Vows to Be the President of All Congolese (January 10, 2019)
  6. Felix Tshisekedi Elected DR Congo President (January 10, 2019)
  7. DR Congo Delays Results of December Election (January 6, 2019)
  8. Jean-Pierre Bemba Returns to DR Congo (August 1, 2018)
  9. At least 30 dead after massacres in Ituri (March 2, 2018)
  10. Botswana Urges Joseph Kabila to Step Down (February 26, 2018)
  11. No elections in DR Congo in December without electronic voting machines: INEC (February 13, 2018)
  12. US Warns DR Congo Against Electronic Voting for Delayed Election (February 12, 2018)
  13. Felix Tshisekedi accuses INEC of illegally prolonging Kabila's mandate (October 24, 2017)
  14. DRC Seeks Arrest of Presidential Candidate Moise Katumbi (May 19, 2016)
  15. Papa Wemba Is Buried in Kinshasa (May 4, 2016)
  16. Papa Wemba Awarded Highest National Honor as Thousands Pay Tribute (May 2, 2016)
  17. DR Congo reach final of African Nations Championship (February 3, 2016)
  18. Political tensions 'running high' in DR Congo ahead of 2016 elections (October 7, 2015)
  19. Rights Groups: DR Congo Must Free Pro-democracy Activists (April 13, 2015)
  20. Police Open Fire on Crowd Protesting Election Law Change (January 19, 2015)
  21. ICC Confirms 14-Year Sentence Against Thomas Lubanga (December 1, 2014)
  22. Etienne Tshisekedi Evacuated to Belgium for Medical Treatment (August 16, 2014)
  23. ICC sentences Germain Katanga to 12 years (May 23, 2014)
  24. 15 dead in football match stampede in Kinshasa (May 12, 2014)
  25. Kerry Calls on Kabila to Honor Constitution (May 4, 2014)
  26. Kerry in DR Congo for Security Talks (May 3, 2014)
  27. Security Council extends UN mission, intervention force in DR Congo for one year (March 28, 2014)
  28. Death toll in Lake Albert boat accident rises to 108 people (March 24, 2014)
  29. ICC finds Germain Katanga guilty of war crimes and crime against humanity (March 7, 2014)
  30. DR Congo Takes Chairmanship of COMESA at Summit in Kinshasa (February 26, 2014)

Live TV Congo Radio en ligne Radio
Available on App Store
Get it on Google Play

Contact Us | About Us | Édition en Français | French Edition

© All rights reserved.