| Africatime
Wednesday 26 April 2017
(AFP (eng) 04/25/17)
UN officials launched a bid Tuesday to raise $65.4 million (59.75 million euros) in emergency funds for hundreds of thousands of people displaced by violence in Democratic Republic of Congo's Kasai region. Fighting between government troops and tribal militias has forced more than a million people from their homes over the past eight months. The UN's humanitarian affairs coordinator Mamadou Diallo said the funds would help "respond to the urgent and multiple needs of 731,000 people during the next six months" in the Kasai area. The vast majority of people in need of help are women and children, he added. Thousands of those displaced have no access to food, clean water or health care, he...
(AfricaNews 04/20/17)
The United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) has airlifted 3,900 tonnes of election materials to 15 election centres around the country to be distributed to 107 satellite stations. The distribution, that started in October, 2016, was at the request of the country’s Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) in December 2015, the UN said Wednesday at a press conference. “As I speak, a helicopter is making a final rotation between Kinshasa and Kasongo Lunda in Kwango province. This ends the MONUSCO air operation to support the ongoing revision of the electoral register,” UN Communications Coordinator in the DRC, Florence Marchal was quoted by local media Radio Okapi. Four cargo aircrafts and 16 helicopters transported equipment including office...
(Xinhuanet 04/19/17)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and the chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, will convene Wedesday the first UN-AU Annual Conference. The two leaders will look into how to strengthen the partnership between the two organizations to face common challenges and opportunities in the continent, on issues of peace and security, sustainable development and human rights, said Stephane Dujarric, UN spokesman, at a daily briefing. "They will also sign the Joint United Nations-African Union Framework for an Enhanced...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/18/17)
Opposition leaders in Democratic Republic of Congo called on national authorities on Monday to investigate a report by Reuters last week that most of the money paid by Congolese citizens for new passports goes overseas. Documents reviewed by Reuters of a 2015 deal between Congo's government and a Belgian company called Semlex to produce biometric passports show that most of the $185 price for a new passport goes to Semlex and a small company called LRPS in the United Arab Emirates. According to a person with direct knowledge of the country's passport deal, the UAE-registered company
(AFP (eng) 04/08/17)
President Joseph Kabila on Friday named an opposition leader as prime minister for the Democratic Republic of Congo, honouring a pledge made as part of a stalled power-sharing deal agreed in December. Bruno Tshibala, a spokesman for the "Rassemblement" (Unity) coalition of parties opposed to Kabila's rule, will replace Samy Badibanga, who resigned as prime minister earlier Friday. But the party, formed by veteran opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi, has struggled to live up to its name. Tshisekedi was to have...
(AFP (eng) 04/05/17)
Democratic Republic of Congo's President Joseph Kabila on Wednesday pledged to appoint a new prime minister in the next two days, in line with a stalled December peace deal struck with the opposition. "The prime minister will absolutely have to be named within 48 hours," Kabila said in a much-awaited speech to MPs and senators on the state of a December 31 power-sharing agreement, yet to be implemented. The deal brokered by the influential Catholic church aimed to avoid a...
(AFP (eng) 03/31/17)
The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously Friday to renew the mandate of the peacekeeping force in the Democratic Republic of Congo, but cut its numbers. Members of the council paid tribute to two kidnapped UN researchers whose bodies were found this week, and voted to approve the MONUSCO mission for another year. The resolution reduces the authorized size of the military component of the mission from 19,815 to 16,215 troops, but the force is already under-strength and in practice fewer than 500 will come home. The United States, which will assume the presidency of the Security Council
(Bloomberg 03/29/17)
The Democratic Republic of Congo, the largest country in sub-Saharan Africa and a major producer of natural resources including copper, cobalt, gold and tin, has never had a peaceful transfer of power. The country has had just three leaders since 1965, and if President Joseph Kabila has his way, it won’t have a fourth any time soon. Kabila’s second term -- his last, according to the constitution -- ended Dec. 19, but he’s still in office. Under a Dec. 31...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/28/17)
Isolated unrest broke out in Democratic Republic of Congo's capital on Tuesday after Catholic bishops withdrew from their role as mediators between the government and opposition in talks aimed at paving the way for delayed elections this year. Demonstrators, some burning tires at city crossroads, took to the streets in several areas in Kinshasa. In one instance, police fired tear gas to disperse a small group of youths. Many shops remained closed and some schools called parents to collect their...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/23/17)
N'DJAMENA French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen pledged on Wednesday to break with her country's decades-old relationship with Africa known as "Francafrique" and abolish the CFA franc currency policy that binds Paris and its former colonies. Francafrique describes an informal web of relationships Paris has maintained with its former African colonies and its support, sometimes in the form of military backing, for politicians who favor French business interests. Le Pen, one of the frontrunners in the presidential election, spoke...
(AFP (eng) 03/14/17)
Rising unrest in central Democratic Republic of Congo threatens to derail voter registration ahead of a high-stakes election, the Catholic Church and the electoral commission said Tuesday. Commission president Corneille Nangaa meanwhile hit out at recent attacks in the central region of Kasai, where four offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) have been set on fire. Kasai has seen a major spike in violence since September, leaving at least 400 dead in an uprising that erupted when government...
(AFP (eng) 03/07/17)
The European Union on Monday warned the Democratic Republic of Congo it faces more EU sanctions if political and military leaders block a deal with the opposition on the country's future. European Union foreign ministers discussed DR Congo amid growing frustration with President Joseph Kabila's refusal to stand aside at the end of his term late last year. "The EU reminds political leaders and members of the security forces that it is ready to adopt new restrictive measures," said the...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/03/17)
Democratic Republic of Congo's main opposition coalition said it had named the son of its late leader Etienne Tshisekedi to succeed him on Thursday, but some within the opposition rejected the choice. Felix Tshisekedi was chosen to lead the alliance of some of the country's largest opposition parties, which was thrown into crisis by the death of his father in Brussels last month, aged 84. Tshisekedi led the bloc during negotiations in December that resulted in a deal obliging President Joseph Kabila to step down after elections that must happen this year. His death sparked clashes between supporters and security forces in the capital
(AFP (eng) 02/21/17)
The Democratic Republic of Congo's government, under pressure to act after months of violence in the south, on Sunday vowed to move away from a solely military solution. Interior Minister Emmanuel Ramazani Shadari told reporters: "The state is envisaging political, traditional and humanitarian solutions on the ground." But he added Kinshasa's response could be "military if arms are not laid down in a peaceful fashion to enable a lasting peace" in restless areas. Shadari did not give further details as...
(AFP (eng) 02/17/17)
The international community on Thursday urged government and opposition parties in Democratic Republic of Congo to restart deadlocked talks to set up a transition regime ahead of elections due late this year. The United Nations, African Union, European Union and the International Organisation of the Francophonie "are increasingly concerned by the continuing impasse in the dialogue among the political stakeholders" in DRC, a joint statement said. The talks aim to implement a power-sharing deal signed on New Year's Eve by...
(Voice of America 02/17/17)
The budget minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo has cast doubt on whether the country will be able to finance elections this year. His statement has sparked concern as delaying the polls last year led to violent unrest. DRC Budget Minister Pierre Kangudia gave reporters the news Wednesday. He said it will not be possible to disburse $1.8 billion from this year’s budget to organize elections in 2017. That hardly comes as a surprise. Total government spending for 2017...
(Xinhuanet 02/14/17)
Serbia and Democratic Republic of Congo agreed on Monday to give a new impetus to their cooperation through mutual support on the international scene and economic cooperation despite last December's EU sanctions against Congo. Foreign Minister of Democratic Republic of Congo Leonard She Okitundu visited Serbia and met with his Serbian counterpart Ivica Dacic at the government building where they held a press conference. Dacic said Serbia and Democratic Republic of Congo agreed to deepen their relations and mutually support...
(Voice of America 02/14/17)
U.S. President Donald Trump made his first phone calls to African heads of state Monday, speaking with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and South African President Jacob Zuma. Nigeria and South Africa said the calls were made at the request of the U.S. president, who until now has said little about Africa or African issues since assuming office last month. The Nigerian presidency said Trump and Buhari discussed issues of terrorism, and said Trump assured Buhari the United States is ready...
(Agence Ecofin 02/03/17)
DR Congo’s minister of land affairs, Félix Kabange Numbi, while meeting with his staff reiterated his commitment to curb land conflicts in the country, reports l’Agence d’information d’Afrique centrale. “Each of us must contribute to reducing land conflicts which tarnish the reputation of our ministry. We must make sure to quench all these conflicts across the nation. It is possible if we all work towards that goal,” the official said. However, though he emphasized on a rapid and efficient achievement...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/03/17)
The death on Wednesday of Congo's opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi leaves opponents of President Joseph Kabila seriously weakened in their bid to force Kabila to quit power after he defied constitutional term limits to stay on last year. Democratic Republic of Congo has never experienced a peaceful transition of power and Kabila's refusal to stand down when his final term expired in December has raised fears the chronically unstable country could slide back into civil war. Despite his 84 years...

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