It was very awesome to realize how my grandmother used to deal with my childish ingratitude. As I excessively demanded more milk to accompanying in swallowing “ugali”, potatoes or any other food, she could simply have a move around and change the cup for getting my consent. I had finally found myself so funny during that period when I discussed the matter with her. She explained to me that I regularly requested to get a full cup of milk, despite my capacity to finish it all. My complaint came out when I got a non-full cup. Thus, as she knew my level of satisfaction, she had only to deal with acceptance with the same quantity into a small cup, this time full.
My president was straightforward in his speech delivered in Swahili with of course few words in French; a fact he apologized on. He was meeting opinion leaders in Goma on 1st December 2013. During this event, he expressed his sympathy and compassion with those affected by war in North-Kivu. He reminded the audience about his surprise as did others when the war suddenly erupted in 2012. In a very concise speech, he has been able to explain the three pillars that sustained the defeat of M23: diplomatic, political and military approaches. He further recognized errors made during 2009 agreements between DRC government and CNDP. Implicitly, these mistakes have contributed to break out the new war spearheaded by M23. To my surprise, he called some of those integrated into national army (FARDC) in 2009 as “wa ruga ruga wote ndani ya armée”. I did not capture the meaning of wa ruga ruga. A statement applauded by the public, seemingly the audience got the point as interesting.
President Kabila’s speech warned Goma’s population over discrimination, ethnic rivalries and revenge spirits. He expressed that another war is being planned somewhere as the great lakes region has always been like that. The end of one predicts another to come soon. An occasion for moms to appeal to Jesus name and the president went direct to send a clear message to neighboring countries, manipulating wars in Eastern, that they have to stop. He insisted on the fact of never being “drunk” of victory rather keeping on watching up events so that a new series of wars found them ready. I got skeptical on the sustainable peace being discussed within Medias. Additionally, the speech also covered the forthcoming fight against poverty, development related issues, and peace consolidation.
He ended his message by appreciating local population efforts for having opposed rebels who called themselves as North-Kivu native. He mentioned that population resistance is a strong message toward those working behind the scene by fomenting rebels. Moreover, I got surprised when the president told the audience that he came across people’s complaining, especially in “Grand-Nord: Butembo and Beni), over harassments, injustice and corruption conducted by public officials. President’s appreciation looks unlikely convincing as he will tackle these misconducts by officials permutation in different provinces; a short and medium term solution. My audience then clapped and applauded on the right presidential decision to deal with corruption and injustice. Seemingly, my interpretation was that the president considers corruption, injustice and harassments as local problems to be handled by having officials leaving one office to another. He also referred on how war has exhausted the budget allocated to other development projects and promised them to run in near future.
I expected that the president had to point out these promises by naming them and having a clear timeframe for easing possible evaluation since he requested to get confidence renewed from his people. In addition, his response and understanding of corruption, injustice etc. left me less convinced. Many observers and I believe that governance issues in DRC are widespread beyond local entities. Consequently, a response and understanding has to be found in that scope. Though he mentioned “mentality change”, as a complementary way of dealing with governance issues, myself find it not as primary means of getting things well-done. Strikingly, there have been verifiable stories of top officials acquiring houses in Europe, US, SA…, either wrong or right. I wondered if these houses are part of “war efforts” that have exhausted national budget. If these allegations involving national level are right, my audience has had a cup changed to deal with their demands while the quantity of milk is still unchanged since 2003. Your interpretation can convince me either way.
I am sorry for cutting my story short and forget to tell you that my grandmother passed away in 2005 in Goma. I really loved her innate management principles.
NTANYOMA R. Delphin