Only justice can heal our society

The M23 has announced on November 5th its renunciation to the violence it has been conducting for eighteen months.

Created to defend the democracy and the human rights in Democratic Republic of Congo and to compel the Cngolese government to respect the agreements it has signed with the National Congress for the Defense of the People, the M23 has chosen the violence as the most powerful strategy to reach its goals.

For this purpose, it has massacred civilians, raped women and recruited children.

Is it not today the right time to organize the lawsuit against these major violators of human rights?

At the moment, the M23 delegates are in Kampala asking the Congolese government to amnesty them, then to integrate their troops into the national army and to find positions for their political leaders.

Can such thought processes heal our society?

The M23 rebellion has come to its end of course, but it is then necessary to heal those who have been victims of it. Victims have been terribly traumatized that they need a much more effective therapy called justice.

Only justice can wipe the tears of victims and avoid a settlement of accounts that would plunge the whole region of great lakes into the civilian war.

Punishing the M23 would discourage all those that expect to use violence in order to access the power. It would also play an important role in the promotion of life respect and the reinforcement of the security, because for us to be secured, we do not need the over-armament of our country, but justice that works.

While amnestying them would make the violence a culture in our country and humiliate all the Congolese population.

However, amnestying those that have violated the basic rights of the population in order to access the power would be to construct peace on the impunity while every peace that is constructed on the impunity is fragile.

Burundi, D.R.Congo and Rwanda, lands of violence

When the violence becomes a culture of a nation, the means to claim the rights and a way to access the resources, the national unity becomes weak, citizens renounce to aspire to a common happiness and to trust one another. Then each group looks for reasons to attack the other, and the country falls into the chaos.
Indeed, the consequences of the violence that Burundi, D.R.Congo and Rwanda have recently experienced seem to be irreparable: children have been recruited and trained by the armed militias to kill, to rape and to loot.
Other children have been compelled to assist to the rape of their own mothers and sisters by the same armed militias.
The same children have seen their fathers being locked into houses before burning them. The belongings on which they counted to survive have been taken, and their villages have been transformed into battlefield on which husbands have executed theirs wives, suns their mothers, pastors their congregations and political leaders their fellow countrymen.
Given everything that has happened to us, is a peaceful future possible?
When people use violence to solve a problem in their society, they lose, in a short time, what will take them so long to get back: peace.
Whay?
Because the repair is never proportional to the damage. Because we shall kill people that we won’t be able to rise. Because we won’t be able to rebuild all what that we will have destroyed. Because victims will look for ways to get one’s revenge.
However, to avoid the violence in the coming days, we should know and let others know that life is a non-renewable resource. This being, we have to be careful with it. We should also understand that when the past stinks a lot, its smell destabilizes the present during which the future is prepared.
Also, to institute peace within these three countries, we have to know that the justice will be its price, and democracy, the pledge.
At this level, an important point seems worthy to be tackled: we all know that the three countries we are talking about in this article are among the poorest countries of the world while they are strongly populated, and the majority of their populations are youth.
However, these youth without education and employment, without anything else as opportunity, won’t they be used to restart violence again?
Don’t they have more opportunities in the violence than in peace?
Why should they privilege peace while they are not earning anything from it?
And what will they fear to lose in the violence? The education? The employment or the businesses?
Therefore, if we want them to privilege peace to the detriment of the violence, let give them the education, the employment and other many opportunities. When they will hear about the violence, they won’t support it, because they know they will lose so many things because of it.

DRAMATIC SITUATION OF A CONGOLESE WOMAN

She became a refugee without hospitality.
She hoped to get hospitality, security by men, carriers of guns, wearing military uniforms but these men that have the job of securing people and their possessions, raped her.
She turns her face now toward marriage hoping to get hospitality there, but when her husband saw her, according to him, she is just a machine he bought with his own money and that must be now at his service.
She found herself polygamy, because according to that man, the woman is not a human being equal to him, but a machine of pleasures and when the man has got enough pleasure from her and gets tired of her, he has now to look to another for the same service.
Disappointed by the wedding that made her a slave, she comes toward the church hoping to get hospitality, but she finds herself in some sects that advocate doctrines that reduce a woman to a weak instrument totally dependent and offer her kitchen and motherhood as the only opportunities for her life.
Disappointed by the church that limits her skills, she decides to go to school to be empowered by education and get hospitality but teachers oblige her to exchange sex for grades.
Disappointed by studies that rape, by a school system that rapes, she decides now to work hoping to get independence and hospitality but the boss asks her also sex if she wants to remain working.
This is the Calvary of which the Congolese woman is victim.
She has no choice anymore because everywhere she turns, she is surrounded by violence.
Now we live in a scientific world, a World that is piloted by English and science.
But the education right is not given to all women. Some of them do not go to school.
All of us know that in Africa, a woman is the agriculture peasant; she raises animals for her family to survive.

Today these two sectors African women are trying to invest in are victims to several problems and solutions to those problems are written in books, diaries or posted as blogs on several links to the internet but most of these women do not know neither reading nor writing.
How will her future be? How will family’s future be? How will the female gender’s future be?
Women around the world protest for these others tired by heavy works for the surviving of families. Think of these others traumatized by polygamy and violence in all its forms. Speak up for these others that are too ashamed to speak because they didn’t get the opportunity of studying. Unfortunately the same opportunity is not offered until now to all African women.
If you are a teacher woman and you have girls in your class, if you are a journalist woman that speaks to girls, if you are a pastor woman that preaches to girls, if you are a family mother that has daughters……… sow in their hearts freedom, independence, pride of being woman, tell them that they are also useful to modern world.

Corruption and Diversion, obstacles to the development in D.R.Congo

On 26th march 2012, the NGO International Transparency-France has published a report in which it has classified D.R. Congo among countries that are the most corrupted of the planet.

According to that report, about 55% of recipe of the public treasure disappear because of corruption.

In fact, the development to which, we, Congolese nation is aspiring can only be possible if we commit to change our mentality, because it is by us, with us and for us that D.R. Congo will be developed.

The culture of corruption and diversion that we already have adopted and that characterizes by now our daily practices constitutes a real brake to the development and makes us the genuine enemies of that development.

What is corruption?

The dictionary defines corruption as the fact of giving money (or other advantages) to a worker so that he can act dishonestly.

And the diversion?

As for the diversion, the dictionary defines it as the fact for a worker to take for him money that was not destined to him.

What are the causes of corruption and diversion?

In D.R. Congo, corruption and diversion have multiple causes. However, we are going to quote some of them:

1.      The Dictatorship

One of the first missions of the dictatorship is indeed to snatch the independence to the justice. Once the justice has lost its independence, it becomes then an instrument that the power uses to punish those who violate the fundamental principle of dictatorship which is the absolute silence. As leaders do already have the justice under their control, they can then divert the possessions of the State and take the bribe without shame nor fear.

2.      The Impunity

Impunity and dictatorship are linked up.

As it has been said in the previous paragraphs, when the justice loses its independence, leaders stop being afraid, because they know they are above the law and can no longer, to this effect, be subjects to the judiciary pursuits. Therefore, leaders indulge in illegal practices among which the corruption and the diversion, and the justice is not going to intervene.

That inaction of the justice in the face of the violation of the law by those who have promulgated it   and who are supposed to respect it and make it respected, encourages the rest of the population to violate also the law.

3.      The Slowness of our administration

One of the features of our administration is the slowness.

In fact, when a Congolese citizen solicits a service to the administration by following the normal procedure, it takes so long that he feels oblige to look for the shortcuts.

However, the Congolese citizen will end by giving bribe in order to motivate the worker who is in charge of providing the service to work on it quickly so that the Congolese citizen can get it on time.

4. The lack of trust between the administration and its civil servants.

In fact, concerning diversion, when a civil servant who is in charge of collecting money for the administration has collected it, he says to himself: if I let this money go in the till of the administration, it won’t come back to me at the end of the month, because the boss will take it and will not think of me.  Therefore, I have to make it disappear before it gets in the till of the administration.

And concerning corruption, it is very difficult for a civil servant to refuse corruption while he knows that if the same corruption was given to his boss, he would have taken it.

5.      The poor payment

The wages that the administration gives to its civil servants predispose them to divert the possessions of the State and to take the bribe.

Given the insufficiency of the wages to satisfy the needs of the civil servants, they indulge in corruption and diversion in order to fill in the deficit.

6.      Nepotism

In D.R. CONGO, when somebody enters the administration, the first thing he does is to get himself surrounded by his family members in that administration even if their profiles are not compatible with jobs that are in that administration. He acts in this way because his main purpose is to give to his family members the chance to get reach, and to avoid the betrayal in all its forms whose people who do not belong to his family can be authors of if he hires them.

However, as these family members who enter the administration, not because they deserve but because the chief is a brother/sister do already know that the short time they have to spend in the administration is the unique occasion they have to get rich, because the day their brother/sister will leave the administration is the same day they will leave too, they then use the corruption and the diversion in order to get reach before the leaving of their brother.

7.      Individualism

It is deplorable to assist, today, in D.R. Congo, to the deterioration of the traditional values that put a particular emphasis on solidarity  among people, and to the birth of the culture where the running to the individual interests  sacrifices collective interests.  This being, when a Congolese accesses a decision-making organ, he doesn’t see it as an occasion to serve, but to get rich.

Corruption and diversion are proofs that the Congolese has no longer a place in the existence of his fellow citizen, that what the Congolese sees are just his personal interests  and that to satisfy them, he doesn’t assess the means he uses to see whether they impoverish  his fellow citizen or not.

And to justify his individualism, he says: I am not the responsible of the dysfunction of the Congolese State. The problem is older than I am. It is since Mobutu; and it is not me who is going to change in a short time what billions of Congolese have destroyed during decades. Me too, my time has come to have what they left.

Otherwise, Mobutu is no longer there; and he won’t come any more. It is up to us now to fix things.

Unfortunately, we know by heart what others have to do, and we ignore what we have to do. We condemn others and forget that each one of us bears a solution to the problem of our Country.

However, we who do not make a part of the generation that has destroyed the D.R. Congo should then make a part of the generation that will rebuild the D.R. Congo.

What are consequences of corruption and diversion?

Consequences of corruption and diversion are numerous; however, the most dangerous is the impoverishment of the State.

In fact, we all know that the main mission the State is to satisfy the general interest.

However, when the State is power, it experiences difficulties to assume its responsibilities, among which the respect of the basic rights such as, the right to education, to health care, to clean water, to food, etc.  Hence the intervention of the foreign humanitarian organizations.

Also, because of the same poverty due to corruption and diversion whose the Congolese State is victim, it finds itself unable to make investments thanks to which it can create employment and increase the recipe of the public treasure to fund the development of the country and pay workers whose the most important are soldiers and the policemen because they are in charge of security, and if they are not well paid, they insecure people instead of securing them. Also, enemies of peace can use them. Hence the resort to the international financial institutions to borrow money in order to fill the deficit caused by corruption and diversion.

Otherwise, corruption and diversion beget social injustice, because they promote illegal enrichments and social inequalities.

What are the solutions to the problems of corruption and diversion?

We think that the following elements should also make part of solutions to end corruption and diversion in D.R. Congo:

     – The change of mentality

It is necessary for us Congolese in general to change our mentality, because we are not innocent. Each one of us has destroyed the country of his way. Therefore, we no longer need, we Congolese, to look for enemies of D.R. Congo and its development out of our national frontiers, because we are the ones.

-The replacement of dictatorship by democracy, governance and the promotion of the access to education.

In fact, it is only in a democratic regime where there is transparency in the management of public affairs, the separation between personal possessions of leaders and the possessions of the State and an independent justice thanks to which the impunity is absent.

Concerning education, it is an instrument that supports democracy because the excess of intellectuals is a big challenge for a dictatorial regime; while the governance puts a particular emphasis on three actors: the State, the private sector and the civilian society.

The State is the manager, the private sector is constituted of taxpayers and the civilian society pushes the State that is the manager to use the money paid by the taxpayers to improve life conditions of the population.

The violence, one of churches challenges in Democratic Republic of Congo.

Words that are most pronounced on the Congolese political stage at the present time are democracy, human rights and development.

 The country leaders and their political parts are saying that they have instituted democracy thanks to which the respect of human rights is guaranteed; they are also saying that they have undertaken the march towards the development of the country.

On the other hand, the opposition and other political movements oppose to these allegations by saying that concerning democracy, no improvement has been done. They condemn, to this effect, the massive violation of human rights, and say that the development leaders are talking about remains a myth in our country. Therefore, they claim democracy, the respect of human rights and ask that the process of development of the country is started.

However, in D.R.Congo, the violence remains the most privileged means to claim a right:

-In 1997, Laurent Désiré Kabila had freed Congolese people and their country from Mobutu’s dictatorship by using the violence.

-In 2004, Laurent Nkunda has noted the lack of the national unit in D.R.Congo, because, according to him, the Congolese community of Rwandan-Tutsi origin of which he makes part was threatened. For him to solve that problem, he used violence. He used the same violence to take one’s revenge for the genocide that the Hutu have conducted against the Tutsi in Rwanda in 1994. These Hutu who took refuge in Congo bush, and in which they continue to live up to now have reacted also by the violence.  Today, the Hutu community living in Congo bush has become hostile to both Congo and Rwanda.

- Since May 2012, the armed group called M23 uses violence to force the Congolese government to respect the agreements that it signed with them. The M23’s violence aims also to force the government to take into account the claims that they have formulated concerning democracy and human rights.

The outcome of all this violence that has accompanied the march of our country is heavy, unbearable and irreparable.

Using the violence to access what we need, to solve disputes between us and our neighbors and to claim our rights is a sign of lack of faith in God and trust towards God and our neighbors.

Churches should understand that the lack of faith in God and trust towards God and neighbors proves the insufficiency of the word of God in D.R.Congo.

By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another”. (John 13, 35).

Dialogue and trust are the consequences of love; also where there is dialogue and trust, there, love grows.

One of the churches missions in Congo should be to make dialogue a new instrument of conflict resolution.

In the complaint of a right, in the struggle to access what we need or to assert our idea and in the resolution of our disputes, churches should privilege and teach people to privilege the means that cause the least damages. And that means, is the dialogue.

In D.R. Congo where the majority of people are Christians and where a big number of people are illiterate, churches become automatically a legitimate actor and the well placed speaker in order to obtain success in the process of making dialogue, thanks to which reconciliation is possible, the unique means of solving disputes within communities.

Churches should know who they are and the strategy they represent so that the dialogue can eliminate the violence, because churches remain, for a big number of people, the main source of information in D.R. Congo.

The dialogue creates peace conditions where democracy, the respect of human rights and development are possible; but violence creates injustice because it affects innocents and leads to an environment where the basic rights of people are violated.

The violence irritates God: Cain had been violent towards his brother Abel, and God cursed him. “The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to Me from the ground. And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. When you cultivate the ground, it shall no longer yield its strength to you; you shall be a vagrant and a wanderer on the earth”. (Genesis 4, 10-12).

About the violence, Hampate ba, an African writer, teaches us that the war ruins in few days what we constructed during centuries.

Otherwise, in view of the fact that the family and the school are the institutions that are in charge of training the constituent elements of the class of citizens of tomorrow, it is then important that these two institutions put a particular emphasis on the dialogue, and that the interactions among members of these two institutions are characterized by dialogue so that the youth that they have the mission of training can understand its necessity.

If we cultivate the spirit of dialogue within the youth, we plant the seeds of sustainable peace and conduct an action to make violence a history.

Rapes, tortures, murders, genocide, massacre and the presence of refugees, of a big number of widows and orphans: these are some of the consequences of the violence all over the world.

However, the humanity has resources to conduct violence, but will never have resources to repair its damages.  Therefore, it is necessary to avoid the violence by privileging the dialogue.

Let call employment peace

Employment is one of the fundamental needs of a human being. As it allows him to provide to his needs and take care of his future, it becomes, however, a factor that plays an important role in the realization of his well-being.

Giving an employment to somebody is contributing enormously to his well-being, and anyone who creates employment, creates the well-being.

One of ways by which employment can be created is creativity.

Creativity is the capacity to come up with something that was not there before. It can also be the fact of improving something that existed already.

In business vocabulary, creativity can mean the fact of starting a business that somebody else hasn’t started before. It can also mean the fact of starting a business that somebody else has started already, but then with some improvements.

In my country the Democratic Republic of Congo, in its eastern part, for most of people, being creative is starting a church or an NGO. These two organizations are nonprofit: they spend money but they do not make money. A church is created to save souls; also, a good church must take care of widows and orphans. An NGO is created to bring a solution to a humanitarian crisis. For these two organizations to realize their missions they need money; and their main source of income is the whole of their members.

A church and an NGO do not pay taxes because, as we have mentioned in previous paragraphs, they are nonprofit and aim the public interest. This means that they do not contribute to the public expenses of the country.

The main source of income of a country is the tax. However, when a country is not collecting enough tax, it is impossible to create employment and fund its development.

In D.R. Congo, especially in its eastern part, we are witnessing the proliferation of churches and NGOS  that seem, by now, to be more numerous than formal businesses and some of them do not prioritize people they should prioritize, among others non-Christians and poor on behalf of the church and beneficiaries on behalf of the NGO, but do prioritize, unfortunately, their founders.  When a church doesn’t prioritize the non-Christians and poor, it stops pleasing God; when an NGO doesn’t prioritize the beneficiaries, it makes the crisis a business to exploit instead of solving it.

We should all know that a church and an NGO are not businesses; they survive thanks to the contributions of their members.

Where will members get money from while there is no employment?

Where will employment come from while there are no businesses?

Where businesses will come from while for most of people being creative is starting a church or an NGO that do not impact positively the income of the country?

 

In Congo, there is an enormous gap between the number of young finalists who are launched on the employment market each year and the number of businesses who are created each year that the retirement of old people cannot be the solution.

In fact, the consequence of all this is that the youth do not have reasons to hope anymore, and this being,  they are now in conflict with their country and their main decision is now to leave the country to go looking for the future elsewhere.

However, the solution to all this is just to create businesses. If we create businesses we will give employment to the youth and that employment will give them reasons to hope and make them proud of being Congolese. Also, those businesses will pay taxes to the government, those taxes will also allow the government to create more employment and build the country. If we create businesses we will reconcile the youth with their country and discourage the emigration.

NGOS and churches are something good because it is through them that people can make a part of solutions to the humanitarian crisis in their community. But if their members do not have employment thanks to which they can make money, these two organizations cannot be successful. As long as Congolese won’t be able to create employment by starting businesses, they won’t either be a part of solutions to the humanitarian crisis in their country the Democratic Republic of Congo.