By Nsengimana Ruzima
The Democratic Republic of Congo is a vast country endowed with enormous potential wealth but is shamefully ranked among the poorest countries in the world. This is no accident. The successive corrupted governments that lack vision for the country combined with chronic economic mismanagement and internal conflicts with no solution in the horizon has led to a serious situation that qualifies the DRC to be a failing State.
The current government led by Joseph Kabila can perhaps fairly argue to have inherited a country in well advanced decay state, like a doctor who refuses to be blamed for the death of a patient who came to see him in an already critical condition. Well, this doctor may have a pretty good case because he may argue and perhaps prove that he did everything he could to save his patient’s life. On the other hand, President Kabila may find it difficult to prove his case given his performance record. What has he been doing to save his country?
Joseph Kabila has failed to make peace with his neighbors in the east, instead he chose to ally himself with his
neighbors’ insurgency groups usually called Negative Forces. A good example is the political and military support he
continues to give to the FDLR-Interahamwe, a group of criminals composed of former Rwandan army and the notorious
Interahamwe responsible for the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. A responsible government would have disarmed these
groups and put them in refugee camps far from their country of origin while waiting for their repatriation. Instead, Kabila
regime has positioned itself on the same political line of the FDLR-Interahamwe. In fact, he has become their “Porte
Parole” by making political demands on their behalf. His reluctance to disarm them coupled with his call asking Rwanda to
negotiate with the FDLR-Interahamwe is a good example of his political support to these groups.. His excuse of lacking
resources to disarm these groups cannot stick anymore.
Recently, President Kabila has mobilized huge resources to attack the tiny Congolese Tutsi minority community who have
been struggling to survive in the Kivu region. Up to 20,000 troops and huge military equipments have been brought in
Goma town to attack the renegade General Laurent Nkunda who rightly refused to join the National Army or FARDC and
chose to stay close to his Tutsi community whose survival was under threat by the FDLR-Interahamwe and other armed
groups such as PARECO and MAI-MAI, all of them supported by the Kabila government.
It is clear that Joseph Kabila is not alone in his crusade against the Tutsi minority in eastern Congo. We know that he is
supported by the very strong and influential Societes Civiles who are responsible for spreading hatred sentiments through
their media networks against the Tutsi community in Kivu region. There is no doubt, there are some countries in the
international community who support the current Kabila’s policy to flash out the Tusti minority group. The MONUC, the
United Nations Mission In Congo has been the backbone of the Congolese army FARDC in the recent attacks against the
renegade General Laurent Nkunda in the hills of Masisi. They were heavily involved in logistics, reconnaissance missions
and propaganda for the Kabila military adventure. What is shocking is to see MONUC’s enthusiasm to help the Congolese
army to attack General Nkunda. There are so many armed groups in Kivu who refused to join the regular army but none
has been asked to disarm including the FDLR-Interahamwe who instead are fighting alongside the Congolese army
against General Nkunda. One can logically assume that General Nkunda has been singled out because he is a Tutsi, and
the involvement of MONUC in this shameful conspiracy can only be explained by the influence of some powerful countries
like France who are pulling the strings behind the seen.
The need for a Safe haven for Congolese Tutsis
Thousands of Congolese Tutsis have been forced out their land in Kivu and are now suffering in refugee camps in
neighboring countries like Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda. Other Congolese refugees belonging to other ethnic groups are
being repatriated by the Kabila government. Only Tutsi refugees have been ignored and left out. Furthermore, those who
remained in Congo are being attacked by their own government and other armed groups like FDLR-Interahamwe.
The survival of the Congolese Tutsi minority ethnic group in DRC is now under serious threat. The Kabila government and
the authorities in Kivu are indeed a real threat instead of being guarantor of security and safety for the Tutsi community.
What future can this community hope for in the DR Congo where a democratically elected government has allied itself with
foreign armed groups such as FDLR-Interahamwe in a campaign to exterminate its own minority group? What kind of
peace can this community hope for in a country where the government has leased part of its territory to various insurgency
groups to be used to attack the neighboring countries?
The future of DRC as a nation looks bleak. A lack of vision by its leadership, a chronic economic mismanagement and a
rampant corruption in almost all sectors of the Congolese society give little hope for a bright future.
By looking at the political and security landscape in the country, the Congolese Tutsi community should seriously consider
taking their destiny in their own hands by starting the process towards a political and economic autonomy within a
protected entity in Kivu. Democracy in DRC means more than majority rule, it also means no political and no geographic
spaces for Congolese Tutsi minority. Facts speak for themselves, in the Kabila government put together by his appointed
prime minister Antoine Gizenga, Congolese Tutsis have been excluded. It is no secret, a huge majority of Congolese
people, perhaps 95% if not more, have been infested by xenophobic sentiments and hatred against the Congolese Tutsi
minority group. You may still remember the killings of Tustis in Kinshasa and other cities in DRC in 1998. The government
officials who incited the population for these killings are still active in the so-called new democratically elected government.
For example, Yerodia Ndombasi the former foreign minister under Laurent Kabila is a senator today, still powerful and
very influential in the current government of Joseph Kabila. despite being on record to have publicly encouraged the
Congolese population to exterminate the Congolese Tutsi ethnic minority. In response as you may remember, Belgium
issued an international arrest warrant based on the Belgium Universal Jurisdiction Law. He was saved by his immunity as
an active member of the government.
Time has come for the Congolese Tutsi community to take their future in their own hands. The recent government military
attack on General Nkunda in North Kivu illustrates Kabila’s true intention which is to destroy the Tutsi minority in Kivu. His
plan was narrowly derailed by a few wise western diplomats during their three-day retreat in Goma town. Next time, the
wise diplomats may not be there!