Save the Congo! is a grassroot Congolese-led campaign group working to help end the wars, conflicts and humanitarian crisis engulfing Congo and to bring about a Congo — and indeed Africa’s great lakes region — at peace with itself. Established in 2008, the year the International Rescue Committee’s last mortality report on Congo placed the number of people killed in the first 10 years of the Congo wars, between 1998 and 2008, at over 5.4 million, Save the Congo! works on the four biggest issues that gives rise to, and sustains, the ills and wrongs killing and uprooting the Congolese people. We call them the 4is (Impunity, Insecurity, Illicit trade of minerals and Institutional failure). To do this, we work and collaborate with five constituencies (student groups, parliamentarians, religious leaders and NGOs working in and on the Congo and Young Congolese in and outside Congo) in campaigning to spread awareness, lobbying for policy changes and organising for justice and democracy. We receive no funding from any government and have never applied for any funding.
Over 5.4 million Congolese were killed between 1998 and 2008
Congo, the Central African nation Joseph Mobutu renamed Zaire in 1971 and Laurent Kabila rebaptised the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1997, has been called the bloodiest war since World War Two; Africa’s First World War, the worse humanitarian crisis since the Holocaust, the worse place to be a woman and the rape capital of the world. A woman is raped every minute. 48 every hour. 1,100 every day. And this has been going since August 1998, the year President Kagame of Rwanda – with the support of President Museveni of Uganda – re-invaded Congo in attempt to overthrow the late Laurent Kabila who they had helped chase out Joseph Mobutu in May 1997, setting the stage for wars and proxy wars that continue to haunt Congo to present day. Over 5.4 million were killed in the first 10 years of the war. Currently, an est. 4.9 million people have been internally displaced because wars, political crisis and humanitarian crisis that accompanies them – and around 1,500 people are killed each day by wars as well as diseases and famine that accompany wars.
The wars and conflicts engulfing Congo have many layers and many fathers. In humanitarian terms, the chief reasons they continue to kill, destroy and uproot thousands of Congolese daily in-spite of local, regional and international efforts is because of four issues we call the 4is: Impunity, Insecurity, Illicit trade of minerals and Institutional failure. In mathematical terms, however, the common denominator to these 4 issues is the crisis of governance and legitimacy in Kinshasa; which has been worsened by Mr Kabila’s refusal to cede power or organise elections at the end of his second and last constitutional mandate, which ended on 19 December 2016. At Save the Congo!, we do three things to help end the killings of our people: we campaign to spread awareness; we lobby for political actions in SADC, AU, EU, UN, IMF, World Bank and Francophonie and we help organise our people to free themselves from Mr Kabila’s kleptocratic regime. To achieve this, we work with five constituencies.
Save the Congo! does not receive money from any government. Everything we do is funded by donation from goodwill individuals and our pure determination to make a difference where we are with what we have – right now. There are many ways you can support our movement and add more weight to our efforts.
“We, the undersigned, join our voices with those of the Congolese people fighting to protect their constitution and calling for free and fair elections to call on the African Union, the European Union and the UN Security Council to help put an end to President Kabila’s ruthless efforts to violate Congo’s constitution, cling to power and crush pro–democracy movement. We further call on you to impose smart sanctions against those targeting and suffocating Congo’s pro–democracy movement or encouraging President Kabila to illegally cling to power beyond his constitutional mandate – and we urge you to push for, and support, strategies and policies that will ensure that President Kabila steps down from power by 19 December 2016 as constitutionally mandated and a transitional government is put in place until a new president can be elected.”
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