The Executive Secretary of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) Liberata Mulamula has said that mineral wealth in the region is greatly contributing to the presence of negative forces.
Mulamula made the observation during a meeting with ICGLR national coordinators on Thursday in Congo Brazzaville.
“She however emphasised the fact that the presence of negative forces was highly linked to the exploitation of natural resources and the Sexual Gender Based Violence (SGBV) and therefore required to be addressed,” an ICGLR statement quotes Mulamula as saying.
She noted, however, that the region has continued to experience relative peace and stability marked with significant improvement in the relations among states and peaceful democratic elections.
The meeting that brought together eleven coordinators from the bloc’s partner states, also deliberated on issues of follow-up to the Special Summit of Heads of State on the illegal exploitation of natural resources that took place in Lusaka, Zambia, in December 2010.
In the preparation for a Summit on SGBV scheduled for Uganda in December this year, the meeting adopted the theme of a special session “United to prevent, end impunity and provide support to the victims of SGBV”.
The member states resolved to establish a strong network of national mechanisms and the Lusaka based Levy Mwanawasa Regional Centre for Democracy and Good Governance, but also urged the partners to support the centre become fully operational.