At the beginning of this week, it was announced that the Southern African Development Cooperation (SADC) Heads of State had approved a plan to deploy yet another multinational force to restore peace in the east of Democratic Republic of Congo. ALSO READ: SADC forces are not a panacea for DR Congo’s ills This will be an addition to the already crowded space where several international forces have been deployed to bring peace that has eluded the region for nearly 30 years. The forces include the long-running UN’s MONUSCO – hitherto the most expensive peacekeeping mission in the world – and its affiliate, the Force Intervention Brigade and the East African Regional Force (EACRF). ALSO READ: MONUSCO chief ignores root cause of Congo conflict, says Amb. Karega Other forces are deployed under a bilateral framework like the Ugandan and Angolan forces. The government in Kinshasa also a few months back enlisted the services of a group of mercenaries from eastern Europe, who are also operating in the same region. It does not end there. The Congolese government forces have also co-opted several illegal armed groups, including the genocidal FDLR militia, who have since been embedded in the government forces. The latest is that the Kinshasa leadership is now blaming the EACRF which deployed just a few months back, for not engaging in combat the M23 rebels, a task that was never part of the force’s rules of engagement. The invitation of these multinational forces – which is a recipe for disaster in itself – is yet another sign that the interests of the Congolese government lie elsewhere other than peace. As if that is not enough, the latest rhetoric by the Congolese President on the EACRF will only insight the Congolese population against the regional force. The president has without substantiating, accused officers of the regional force of colluding with M23 rebels to mount roadblocks which they use to impose illegal taxes on the population. It must be noted that M23 rebel have over the past months withdrew from all areas they controlled and ceded them to EACRF, in the spirit of the regional-led peace process. After the regional force stuck to their mandate, resisting calls by Congolese leaders to engage in combat with M23, which they refused. On the other hand, the Kinshasa regime continues to drag its feet whenever it comes to implementing the peace process. It is therefore time for Congolese citizens to look their leaders in the eyes and remind them of their duty to protect them, and that this should not be delegated to the plethora of multinational contingents.