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Senate Prez Léon Kengo Wa Dondo Causes Public Outrage By Announcing Power-Sharing In Wake Of National Consultations

Posted on the 12 August 2013 by Aengw @alexengwete

Senate Prez Léon Kengo wa Dondo Causes Public Outrage By Announcing Power-Sharing In Wake Of National Consultations

(PHOTO: Léon Kengo wa Dondo electioneering in Kinshasa as presidential candidate in 2011)

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At a gathering with opposition leaders Saturday, August 10, Senate President and newly-minted co-chair in the Presidium of the National Consultations Léon Kengo wa Dondo told the audience:

"We want [...] that all those participating [in the National Consultations] also contribute to the resolutions that could serve tomorrow as the minimal program [...] of the government [to be] issued from the National Consultations."

This statement is causing in some quarters of the opposition a stampede for what is called "personal positioning" in Congolese political lingo.

The spectacle of some diehard opposition leaders like José Makila--who've all along rejected these consultations--suddenly flip-flopping over this issue has caused public outrage.

The grapevine of Radio-Trottoir puts it bluntly: "When you see politicos of the ilk of José Makila tango like this with the Presidential Majority, then wads of greenbacks must have changed hands!"

Anyway, the reshuffle of the government of technocrats led by Premier Augustin Matata Ponyo would jeopardize all the gains made by the DRC in terms of financial good governance and budgetary restraint. 

A self-inflicted disaster in the offing, as it were, as thieves and embezzlers of all stripes would be appointed to ministerial posts and other key positions.

The leader of the pro-Kabila PPRD Caucus in the National Assembly, MP Emmanuel Ramazani Shadari (Maniema Province), quipped on Radio Okapi:

"If you say, 'Majority, Opposition, and Civil Society: Form a government!' Then, there wouldn't be any Opposition left and the Constitution would be infringed. Why go to consultations, waste money and pay hotel bills? If we want to share power, we could do so calmly right here [in Kinshasa]."

(To clarify the objection to Kengo's suggestion raised by Ramazani Shadari: The DRC Constitution mandates that the government be appointed by the President out of the majority obtained from legislative elections. Three main venues have been selected for the various gatherings of the Consultations: Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, and Kisangani. The number of participants is staggering: 450 delegates, as is the budget of the 20-day exercise: a whopping $5M!)

Radical opposition leaders and conspiracy theorists of Radio-Trottoir see in Kengo's statement a "trial balloon" prior to bamboozling the country into yet another cycle of Transition--with Joseph Kabila as president for life à la Mobutu.

The Secretary General of Vital Kamerhe's UNC party, MP Jean-Bertrand Ewanga, lashed out at Kengo in an interview with Radio Okapi, accusing the Senate president of "play[ing] a dangerous game" as the [presidential] decree was signed by Mr. Kabila for his interest and in order to boost his Majority."

Others claim that the presidential decree of June 26 has clearly defined the mission statement of the Consultations as "the gathering of all the sociopolitical strata of the Nation in order to reflect, exchange and debate, freely and without constraint, about ways and means susceptible to cement national cohesion, to reinforce and extend the authority of the state throughout the national territory with a view to putting an end to the cycles of violence in the country's eastern part, stemming any attempt at destabilizing institutions, and accelerating the country's development in peace and concord."

Though there's no mention of what Kengo called a "requalification of the majority" in the presidential decree, opportunistic politicians are stampeding through the opening made by the Senate president. And it doesn't help that Speaker Aubin Minaku, the co-chair in the Presidium, has chosen to keep mom on Kengo's outlandish statement.

At any rate, the Consultations are scheduled to start this week and last 20 days, ending before the start of the September parliamentary session. 

The "technical secretariat" is now asking the 3 "components" (Presidential Majority, Opposition, and Civil Society) to turn in the list of their delegates to the Consultations...

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PHOTO CREDITS: Photo by John Bompengo via radiookapi.net


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