EVENT I: Foreign Policy, Security, Democracy and Human Rights
WHERE: Room SR-385 in the Russell Senate Office Building
DATE & TIME: Thursday, October 24, 2019 from 1:30 – 4:30 pm
EVENT II :Diaspora Engagement with DRC Officials
Where: The Catholic University of America
Date: Saturday October 26, 2019
Time: 2:00 – 4:00 PM
Hon. Rolly Zazi Lelo, Senator
Hon. Jean Gambu Bakomito, Senator
Hon. Yamba Kazadi Gracia, Member of Parliament
Hon. Lite Asebea André, Minister for Human Rights.
Hon. Dieudonnette Boyekombo Mungwananjo , Senator
Hon. Lambert Mende Omalanga, Member of Parliament
Hon. Kabund wa Kabund, 1st Vice President of Parliament
Hon. Mamba Kabamba Jean Jacques, Member of Parliament
Background : About 166 armed groups, including some from neighboring countries of Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi currently operate in the former Kivu Province according to Kivu Security Tracker and Human Rights Watch. They kill, rape, kidnap for ransom, collect taxes, kill wildlife in national parks, and disrupt trade. In this environment, the level of human rights violations is atrocious. The response to the Ebola outbreak has been hampered by, among other things, security challenges and the mistrust of NGOs by the affected communities who see these organizations as enriching themselves on the backs of their communities.
For about twenty years the United Nations’ Stabilization Mission (MONUSCO) has been active in the DRC. Yet the current situation paints a mission that has exhausted its efforts, with rebel groups still active, leaving the local communities aggrieved at the usefulness and continued presence of MONUSCO. Can the UN restore state authority and security in the ungoverned spaces in the DRC?
President Felix Tshisekedi has already reached out to neighboring countries to join the fight against armed groups to ensure security in DRC and the region. Is this the needed alternative to UN peacekeeping mission? What is the role of the DRC army?
The recent peaceful elections and the inauguration of a new administration in the Democratic Republic of Congolese (DRC) presents further opportunities for the DRC to move a step closer to its long overdue economic achievements and political stability. All eyes are on President Felix Tshisekedi. However, an African proverb notes that “A single bracelet does not jingle“. The second event is meant to encourage dialogue between DRC officials and the diaspora community to identify issues and initiate possible solutions to improve the livelihood of Congolese citizens.
This is an opportunity to interaction with members of Parliament, Senate and the Minister of Human Rights. The DRC needs leaders to champion the causes the diaspora cares about the most, among them youth employment, land grabbing, nepotism, future of the United Nations mission, insecurity, corruption and much more. If you wish to contribute a topic for discussion and participate in a pre-meeting preparation and for media, please contact AFHN Policy Analyst Bahati at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office at 202-817-3670
Event Organizer: Africa Faith & Justice Network (AFJN)