KIGALI - Debts owed to the Economic Community for Great Lakes region (CEPGL) by the Democratic Republic of Congo, (DRC) are slowing down the bloc’s programme, a top official has complained.
Created 1976, CEPGL brings together Rwanda, Burundi and DRC and was revived in 2007 after years of inactivity attributed to the instability in the region.
“Since the restoration of this bloc in 2007, DRC has not honoured its contribution, now totalling to Euro 800,000. They have even failed to tell us when they will fulfil their commitment which is slowing down our programmes,” said Ambassador Gabriel Toyi, the Executive Secretary of CEPGL.
Speaking from the CEPGL secretariat in Rubavu, Toyi said that the DRC does not only owe the bloc her contribution, but also has other outstanding debts dating before the bloc collapsed.
“They acquired a loan from the bloc’s bank, BDGL, worth $120m and also have to pay another $3 million for the regional power plant, SINELAC,” said Toyi.
He was however, quick to add that the Congolese have promised to clear the BDGL money by March this year, saying that they have since demonstrated political will to service the loan.
“We will soon send our team to Kinshasa which will be made up of people from CEPGL and the bank. Congo has of late demonstrated political will to pay,” he added.