Four members of the government held a press conference on Wednesday to respond to the latest Human Rights Watch report on the Democratic Republic of Congo. The government spokesperson, Lambert Mende, challenged the rights group to provide proof of its allegations. He asked Human Rights Watch to list the names of political opponents who were allegedly killed by government agents in the last two years since the election of President Joseph Kabila.
Apolinaire Malu-Malu, the coordinator of the Amani Program, which resulted in the signing of the Goma peace accords between the government and rebel groups in January, has said in an interview with Belgian newspaper Le Soir that warlord Laurent Nkunda “has the power to annoy” but lacks the means to overthrow the government.
Listening to Laurent Nkunda’s recent rhetoric, one may think that the warlord has gone through elections, been elected, and now has a mandate to speak on behalf of a sizable portion of the Congolese population.
Swiss authorities have indicated that 8.3 million US dollars in funds belonging to Mobutu Sese Seko will be returned to his family on December 15, 2008. The funds were frozen on May 17, 1997 after the death of the former Congolese president.
In his wildest dreams, warlord Laurent Nkunda sees himself as the President of the Democratic Republic of Congo one day. He dreams of marching on to Kinshasa from his hideouts in Kigali and North Kivu, on to South Kivu, Katanga, the Kasais, Bandundu, Bas-Congo, and finally making a triumphal entry into the capital. He envisions he will be welcomed as the Hero, Liberator, Savior, Lord, and proclaimed Chancellor of the Congo.
As if more evidence was needed to prove that Laurent Nkunda is a war criminal, this week we had more reports that civilians had been targeted for summary executions after Laurent Nkunda’s rebels attacked and occupied the town of Kiwanja in North Kivu province.
Americans elected Barack Obama as the first African-American President of the United States on Tuesday. On this historic day, people all around the world rejoiced as their preferred choice came out in front at the end of a long and hard-fought campaign.
Congolese will be watching closely as the results of the U.S. presidential election trickle in on Tuesday night. People in the Congo are hoping that Senator Barack Obama will win the contest over Senator John McCain and become the first African-American president of the United States.