Ebola and bullets invoke the spirits of death in Congo

Events in DR Congo have continued to hit headlines in the region, albeit for all the wrong reasons-following recent clashes between General Nkunda and the Congolese Army-where it was alleged in some Congolese quarters that Rwanda was aiding the logistics and funding support to General Nkunda.

Events in DR Congo have continued to hit headlines in the region, albeit for all the wrong reasons-following recent clashes between General Nkunda and the Congolese Army-where it was alleged in some Congolese quarters that Rwanda was aiding the logistics and funding support to General Nkunda.

The UN has refuted those allegations as “baseless and should be treated as rumours and hearsay.”

On the battle lines, the fighting has subsided with Nkunda’s and the Congolese military leaders deciding to settle for a truce-for now.

However, barely a day the peace treaty was signed, the guns were firing again, both sides saying, “It wasn’t me.”

President Joseph Kabila and General Laurent Nkunda have agreed to have a face to face meeting-but no date has been fixed yet.

On the other hand, General Nkunda has helped the UN do its job, that of identifying, demobilising and expatriating Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) rebels.

Nkunda has publicly said he is fighting the FDLR Hutu power rebels who believe and work hard to achieve their ultimate objective-the total extermination of the Tutsi population.

Nkunda’s troops captured 50 war captives from their recent clash with the Congolese army, as FDLR are being supported by the Congo government, according to Nkunda who is fighting to protect his Congolese Tutsi brethren.

Nkunda is not the only political entity causing Kabila’s government headache, Uganda’s oil discovery along the boarder with Congo has suddenly angered the Congolese government, so much that recently a British oil worker was shot and killed by Congolese army men while carrying out oil exploration activities on Lake Albert.

Uganda and Congo are currently involved in a stalemate about the ownership of a certain island-blessed with huge amounts of fish and near huge oil wells.

Both countries have since last month moved their troops to areas close enough to each other’s boarders which has built up a lot of tension and anger.

That anger has led to both presidents of the neighbouring countries meeting to find out where exactly the boarder between Congo and Uganda stands.

Mbusa Nyamwisi, Congolese Foreign Affairs Minister had earlier said that boarders drawn by colonial powers be respected. Congo belonged to Belgian King Leopold while Uganda was a British Protectorate.

The two presidents (Joseph Kabila and Yoweri Kaguta Museveni) met last week in Tanzania’s resort town, Arusha under the watchful eye of Jakaya Kikwete, Tanzania’s president and agreed that both would be involved in drawing a new boarder line.

The two presidents agreed also on strategies of flashing out LRA-rebels who have caused the 20-year insurgency in Northern Uganda.

However, upon hearing about a meeting between Kabila and Museveni the LRA said they would resume brutal attacks should they be attacked in any way by the Congolese government.

 In related developments, DR Congo is currently facing a crisis in dealing with the deadly Ebola virus which has broken out in the South Eastern Region of Kasai and by Thursday, more than 160 people had been killed by the epidemic.

For its part, the Rwandan government has issued a warning to residents near the boarder with DR Congo alerting The Aids Research and Treatment Centre-TRAC to set up ‘mechanism’ to prevent the highly infectious disease from spreading to Rwanda.
Dr Innocent Nyaruhiriha, Minister in charge of Infectious Diseases however did not explain what mechanisms TRAC would set up.

While in Gisenyi-Rwanda’s far western town, relief workers and government officials led by Protais Musoni, Local government minister are working tirelessly to help rebuild families and houses after 10 people lost their lives and 1000 houses were destroyed by floods in Nyabihu district on Wednesday.

After a prolonged dry season, many residents in Gisenyi were looking forward to the rains-but what hit them, was more than they asked for.

Unfortunately it was anticipated, floods have killed people before-most recently in November 2006.

Ten people killed and 1000 houses destroyed was more rain than residents in Nyabihu district asked for.

Torrential rains have been a cause of catastrophe in the districts of Rubavu and Nyabihu for a long time, killing a couple of residents in November last year. Local and government officials have attributed the problems of floods to poor housing and planning.

Also in news, the Rwandan Parliament has asked government to deploy soldiers on the borders with DR Congo for fear of the fighting in Eastern Congo spilling over to Rwanda. Some MPs like Elie Ngirabakunzi of the Liberal Party supported the motion.

While the MPs are discussing what to do with Eastern Congo, their leader Alfred Mukezamphura is admitted in King Faisal Hospital after suffering another attack in his long running battle against high blood pressure.

The parliament leader collapsed in his office on Wednesday. Reports from King Faisal say the speaker is recovering but will not be discharged soon.

There won’t be anymore threats and squabbles about land in Mutara. Thanks in large part to President Paul Kagame’s personal intervention to stop rampant exaggerated ownership of land by high ranking army and police officers.

The security operatives had generously awarded themselves huge chunks of land after forcibly evicting peasants from their plots-thereby making the peasants homeless and landless, till they got the attention of the president.

President Kagame himself had the humiliating experience of explaining the circumstances under which he had acquired 43 hectares of land in Kayonza District.

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s witnesses don’t need the long charitable hand of the Rwandan government, especially if that charity is expressed in terms of spraying inside their houses to fight malaria.
According to Dr. Innocent Nyaruhirira, the believers joined prostitutes in rejecting the ongoing Indoor Residual Spraying campaign carried out by the Ministry and the US government.

Born Again Christians have continuously turned away government spraying teams, saying God is against the act. One wonders if the same God can support mosquitoes to maintain their ultimate desire to exterminate the big number of Rwandans under the threat of malaria.

Also on September 11 2007, Ethiopia, which runs on a unique Coptic calendar more than seven years behind the normal calendar, celebrated the beginning of a new year and a new Millennium.

Ethiopia’s Millennium celebrations were highly publicized across the world because the country holds a special place in the history of the black race, after being among the first places in the world where Christianity started.

It is also considered a symbol of African pride because of Ethiopia’s resistance against colonial rule by Europeans.