AFRICA/CONGO DR - Areas of instability in the DRC are multiplying

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) – It is not just the North Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of Congo which for months has been devastated by the guerrilla group M23 to raise concerns about the stability of the large African Country. According to a survey published by "Le Potentiel," Journal of Kinshasa, in fact, in other areas of the DRC, there are ominous signs. In Katanga, the unconditional support contributed by the local voters of Kabila father and son seem to falter because of the failure to return on behalf of the State to local authorities 40% of the taxes collected in the province, as provided by the law in 2006 on decentralization. The replacement of the local governor with one of President Kabila’s brothers has also aroused discontent among the population. The airport of Lubumbashi, the capital of this region rich in copper, has often been the subject of mysterious shootings.
In this area at least a militia operates, led by Kyunga Mutanga, alias Gédéon, sentenced to death for crimes against humanity, but escaped from prison in broad daylight in Lubumbashi, in September 2011. The newspaper cites Mgr.Muteba Mugalu, Bishop of Kilwa-Kasenga, who states: "the region is about to sink into violence, psychosis and fear. Many are hiding in the forest."
In Kasai, in August, the Chief of Staff of the region, Colonel John Tshibangu deserted and created his own armed group, which is allied with that of a former loyal of the former dictator Mobutu. Other areas of tension are the Eastern Province, South Kivu, Maniema province and that of Bas-Congo. The weakness shown by the central government against the M23, according to the newspaper, has encouraged other groups in other areas to come forward. The only consolation is that, at least for the moment, these movements (some composed of only a few men) do not have the ability to march on Kinshasa and overthrow the central institutions. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 19/09/2012)