Sources Close to the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) tell AfroAmerica Network that DRC President Joseph Kabila is finalizing his decision to tap one of his opposition leaders to be the next Prime Minister. According to the sources, four names were presented to him, including Vital Kamerhe, Leon Kengo Wa Ndondo, Mbusa Nyamwisi, and Etienne Tshisekedi. Joseph Kabila has allegedly rejected Vital Kamerhe because he viewed him as a close ally turned enemy who betrayed him. He also allegedly rejected Mbusa Nyamwisi, because he hails from Eastern DRC and is seen as not having national influence. According to the same sources, Joseph Kabila did not even bother to discuss UDPS’ Etienne Tshisekedi.
The choice then fell on Kengo Wa Ndondo. According to other sources close to Joseph Kabila, the choice was justified by several reasons including:
- Kengo Wa Ndondo is well known around the DRC political circles and around the World. He was the right hand of the Zairian dictator Mobutu Sese Seko and was viewed by the West as the least of the evils among Mobutu’s cronies.
- Kengo Wa Ndondo shows more political maturity than other opposition leaders, especially UDPS’ Etienne Tshisekedi and hence may constitutes a counterforce against the latter.
- Kengo Wa Ndondo is allegedly supported by the influential Catholic Church led by Cardinal Laurent Monsengo. The Catholic Church has been instrumental in denouncing the November 28, 2011 elections and influencing the international opinion (see our article:UDPS President Etienne Tshisekedi to Form a Parallel Government .
- Finally, Joseph Kabila’s circle has approved of the choice. Likewise, Kengo wa Ndondo appears to have the backing of Vital Kamerhe and Mbusa Nyamwisi.
Kengo Wa Ndondo has recently seen his standing among Congolese rise especially after he was attacked in Paris, France on December 31, 2011, by unknown assailants, suspected to be Congolese UDPS militants. He was accused of being too close to Joseph Kabila while claiming to be in the opposition and being an agent of Rwandan President Paul Kagame. An astute politician, he quickly and publicly pardoned his assailants and rallied for unity among the Congolese. However, some congolese still view him with suspicion. His mother is a Rwandan, while his father is Polish from a Jewish background. For Congolese hard liners, everything Rwandan reminds of the crimes committed in the DRC by the troops of the current Rwandan regime led by General Paul Kagame and hence is evil.
However, observers have told AfroAmerica Network that Laurent Kengo Wa Ndondo may be the right person at the right moment. He may be the only person able to bring the opposition and Joseph Kabila together. He has the ear of the West and may get the Western powers to take DRC case seriously. Hence, he may be the only person right now able to unlock the impasse in the East by convincing General Paul Kagame to negotiate and resolve the issue of the Rwandan rebels, thus help bring the elusive peace in the Kivu provinces.
Apparently, Joseph Kabila plans to announce the government in a few days. However the death of his confident Katumba Mwanke may change the done. To complicate the matter, the reaction from UDPS and Etienne Tshisekedi remains another unknown to include in the equation.
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