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Life Reflections

The tale of D.R. Congo’s misguided missiles

By October 24, 2022June 6th, 2023No Comments

 October 21, 2022

This is the tale of misguided missiles, unloosed upon the 11th emergency UN General Assembly to debate and vote on the Russia-Ukraine question, last October 14.  The envoys were thrust bang into the horns of dilemma but also found some amusement.

The amusement offer was from one envoy who flew off on a tangent to fire off missiles of accusations of plunder of his country by a neighbouring country, both neighbours some 6,000 km south of the subject of the session.

DRC envoy Georges Nzongola-Ntalaja fumed: Rwandans have occupied my country, looting gold and coltan and many other things. They even take chimpanzees and gorillas from the Congolese forests…. all of this is well known.

There is a clear report on all this, the envoy confirmed, titled…. er… titled….er – well, I forget for the moment. They steal many things, anyway, like er…….

Watching him on YouTube, you could guess he was searching for the word “sombe”, a national cassava leaf dish. But I guess time was not his ally. His bemused audience must’ve regretted the limits of time, also.

Still, in case there was anybody alarmed by any of this, Rwandan diplomat Robert Kayinamura sought to allay fears.

These allegations are always there, said he, every time elections approach. No flowing water… electricity… roads… it is Rwanda. He must’ve wanted to add: no rain, it is Rwanda. If it’d been later, he’d also have added: They appoint a dead army General to a prominent position, it is Rwanda’s doing.

But, unable to bear the lame scapegoating, he concluded: We need to move beyond this mentality.

In connection with that “sombe”, a US-based Rwandan blogger lists more of that country’s culinary favourites – among many other points he raises – which are apparently all living things, but I’ll stick to my narrower topic.

Looting. Our Congolese brother must have forgotten to complain about the plunder of his compatriots by Rwanda! Or is it that all the Congolese refugees hosted by this country do not matter to his government?

Which, in connection with said culinary choice items, reminds me of how the Congolese managed to kick out their hated colonialists thanks to those culinary habits. So, it’s as well their hated compatriots find sanctuary elsewhere! (You dig?)

But, in truth, the envoy should not be our object of mirth. The good piper was singing the tune called by his master.

Before him, at the 77th UN General Assembly last September, President Felix Tshisekedi was more combative, sacrificing his whole speech to false accusations. He accused Rwanda of “massive support both in war material and troops” to M23, one of some odd 132 rebel groups in the eastern part of the country.

No word about any of the other rebel groups, despite the maiming and slaughter and raping of innocent citizens they engage in on a daily basis. Even as you read this, wherever they are now rampaging, it’s deaths and rapes.

If it sounds extremely horrifying and pitiful, it’s because it is.

On the contrary, where M23 controls, peace for the citizenry reigns. Perhaps a reason the president blames Rwanda; he has often visited and knows the country is synonymous with peace.

Unlike him, though, other presidents who have visited have sought advice and collaboration in solving their problems. That way, they’ve found peace. But those are others; others who are not engrossed in weird ways of seeking votes.

Otherwise, President Tshisekedi would also see the light of cooperation with his neighbour and stop his vindictiveness. As a neighbour that Rwanda has ever visited and found with near-similar terrain, DRC would acquire peaceful citizenry existence in a jiffy, despite the curse cast by King Leopold II on 2nd May 1885.

Remember, from then, scavengers hovering over it are out to scuttle any effort to find peace. It’s thus that peace has eluded DRC since then.

Which is why President Paul Kagame gave those accusations a 9-second brush-off.

He knows the DRC problems should be seen holistically. So, he is preoccupied with all of the issues besetting the globe, of which conflict is only one part, courtesy of those scavengers.

To quote any part of President Kagame’s speech is to do injustice to the whole but let’s take some liberty to quote some. “These challenges all require multilateral cooperation and efforts. Yet the perception that the international system is no longer up to the task has only deepened, particularly where the interests of the powerful members are at stake.”

The 20-year-long presence in DRC of the colossal and most expensive UN peacekeeping force has solved nothing and has only “exposed neighbouring states, notably Rwanda, to cross-border attacks that are entirely stoppable.”

Then this: “There is an urgent need to find the political will to finally address the root causes of instability in eastern DRC. The blame game does not solve the problem. These challenges are not insurmountable, and solutions can be found. This would ultimately be much less costly in terms of both money and human lives.”

Is anybody out there listening? With global political harmony, solutions can be found.

Otherwise, this blame game of false accusations is only one of DRC’s many misguided missiles.

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