Kinshasa- The former Prime Minister of Democratic Republic of Congo, Samy Badibanga, has issued an urgent appeal for an international donor conference that seeks to end the hunger that is affecting mainly children in the country.
In a press release issued on Wednesday, the former Prime Minister, said: “I join the urgent appeal by the Catholic and Protestant churches in the Congo issued to the international community for an international donor conference for Kasai. A humanitarian operation in Kasai is necessary to put an end to a tragic humanitarian situation. We must put aside the question of the elections and stop looking at the Congo merely for its mineral wealth.”
He said the violence, insecurity and indiscriminate massacres that are terrorising the population mean that international action in the Congo must be reviewed in full. “The terrorist acts committed against UN investigators and peacekeepers in 2017 must not weaken our resolve. Quite the contrary, as the core values of the United Nations Charter are being put to the test in Kasai. To restore them, urgent humanitarian action is required to bring at least food and medical assistance,” he said.
DRCongo has a population of about 100 million but has for most of the years been faced with wars that has driven millions away from their homes. The children and women have been bearing the brunt of most of the times of their lives.
According to the World Food Programme, 250,000 children will die if they do not receive food aid urgently. The joint declaration made by the Congolese Catholic and Protestant churches in Kinshasa on Human Rights Day, December 10th, should serve as an alarm call for the international community.
Since the beginning of 2017, the number of people displaced because of violence in the Congo has doubled from two to four million, according to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
The Congolese population in Kasai, Kivu and Tanganyika need not only emergency humanitarian aid, in the form of food and medical assistance, but also post-emergency aid, particularly to stabilise Kasai and Kivu.
One year after Kasai was hit by an explosion of violence, even though the violence is subsiding, the population has gone from extreme poverty to level 3 extreme humanitarian emergency. Whilst some of those who fled have gradually returned, the time to launch a major humanitarian operation has come, for which the Congolese State, weakened and battered by a severe economic crisis, has not the means to fund. The time has come to call for world solidarity and on the generosity of the international community to mobilise urgent humanitarian aid to the Congo and thus rescue a population in absolute distress.
The intensity of violence and humanitarian crisis assailing the Congolese population is unparalleled on our planet. Throughout the country, there are 4 million displaced persons. This figure tops 1.4 million in Kasai.