Thursday, July 13, 2006

Elections in DRC: relevant to the people or legitimization of a client regime?

One African story I have not written much about is the impending elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). However, the giant DRC is clearly one of the most important countries on the continent. It's certainly the most resource rich. One World ran this interview with Congolese political scientist Georges Nzongola-Ntalaja.

Nzongola-Ntalaja argues that the DRC continues to be threatened by western interference, as it has been for over a century. And he implies that the elections will mean little to ordinary Congolese.

The forthcoming election means more to the international community, which is spending heavily on it and even sending in European Union forces to supplement MONUC to ensure that it is being held, than to the Congolese people. The major powers of the world and the international organizations under their control would like to legitimize their current client regime in Kinshasa so they can continue unfettered to extract all the resources they need from the Congo.

The interview is an interesting read.

The Salon of News and Thought blog has some decent coverage of the elections and points to other sources as well.

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