The Democratic Republic of Congo recently ended its election, under the watchful eyes of the world. Sadly, not because the ‘world’ is concerned with the DRC’s progress but each looking out for their own interests.
Against all odds and pressures from within and without, the final results were presented.
This is currently being disputed. SADC which has by all means been a sleeping toothless dog, is recommending a recount of elections.
The DRC has been plunged into turmoil since the days of Leopold II in the late 19th century.
And for some reason, everyone that has come in touch with this country has been a contributor to that turmoil. In as much as the West has betrayed the DRC in order to accumulate various natural resources, African states followed in the same footsteps. It’s like a gathering of vultures and hyenas, sharing the dead carcass.
Besides the DRC’s own internal socio-political challenges, it’s the place where everyone is contributing to deepen those challenges.
Such global betrayal concentrated in one nation, all because of its wealth, which is being exported across its borders while its citizens suffer.
At a time such as this when making a turn-around for the country is crucial, Africa has stood watching from a distance. Instead of helping to facilitate a smooth transition, it’s been watching and expecting the worse outcomes.
While I’m accustomed to the global betrayal of Africa, it’s the African betrayal of fellow African nations which is my challenge. It is a great shame that Africa as a continent continues to play the betrayer of its own. We’ve stood and watch the DRC deteriorate in chaos and came in to assist when we needed something to take out of it. This is the problem of Africa, that we can neither stand together nor protect each other.
At this crucial moment, SADC and the AU ought to lead the discussions of holding the pro-Kabila parties accountable.
While almost everyone was speaking out that the results be released, only a handful of African states have spoken against the obvious fraud of elections. We cannot wait that Belgium and its cronies should lead the way of condemning obvious injustice against the people of the DRC.
The DRC continues to serve as an emblem of the effects of the 1184-1885 Berlin Conferences of having forced Africa into states. A country that became a nation without being a nation. And that division has fuelled various political unrest. Yet, the issue was not irredeemable.
Except that many saw it as an opportunity to increase their profits and gain wealth, therefore, intentionally ensuring that the chaos continued.
The rest of the world, at this stage, is guilty when it comes to the DRC. Why has the entire world ganged up on one nation and allowed to watch the deteriorating humanitarian crisis? Is it that the world is incapable of addressing it effectively? It is about self-interest.
Many have much to gain out of this turmoil of the Congo War. It’s an ethical dilemma which makes us realise the extent of human greed and that there is no one out there to look out for Africa’s interest, except Africa herself.
Africa must free herself from the self-hate she has learned and pull her weight.
While the rest of the world has no particular interest in Africa, except for what they can get out of it, for us, this is home.
And the DRC is part of that home, which must be put in order. No one will do it for us. The state of the DRC would become that of any other African nation, not because of external forces, but because we never learned to exercise the true meaning of pan-Africanism. As long as Africa continues to betray its own, it is betraying its own common history. There is no true freedom for any African country, until we stop selling ourselves as pawns of foreign powers to betray our own.
We cannot progress by taking advantage of the DRC’s crises as means of profiting. As we observe the DRC’s crisis, Africa as a whole should see herself as part of that crisis. It’s not their crisis, it’s our crisis.
How do we go about rectifying a country whose crisis has extended across three centuries? The solution to this should come from Africa herself, first, from the people of the DRC and its neighbours, then the rest of Africa coming to aid.
We’ve to cease the internal betrayal of our own. There is no amount of external intervention that will rescue the DRC, it must come from within. However, such realisation must be in the context of having functional and efficient institutions and leadership.
Disclaimer: Basilius M. Kasera is Dean of Students at IUM, the views expressed in this article are his person opinions and do not reflect those of his employer or his associates.