Mpondwe / Kasindi, June 17th 2021 (CPA).– The President of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Felix Tshisekedi Tshilombo, and his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, on Wednesday launched construction works for the modernization of roads Kasindi-Beni (80 km), Beni-Butembo (54 km), Bunagana-Rutshuru-Goma (89 km), during a ceremony at the border post of Mpondwe / Kasindi, in Nord Kivu.
The signing of this project is in line with the commitments of two heads of state, Felix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo and Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, who dealt with the file during their meeting in November 2020.
The cornerstone laying ceremony took place at Mpondwe, one of the 3 busiest border posts between Uganda and DRC, separated from Kasindi, DRC, by Lubiriha River.
The renovation of these roads is of great importance for Kampala, which will thus be able to export its commercial products, construction materials and manufactured products to the major cities of DRC, via the Congolese cities of Beni, Butembo and Goma.
Kinshasa, for its part, will gain with the increase in the export of agricultural products such as tea, coffee, cocoa, and timber, which often cross the Ugandan-Congolese border fraudulently.
Warming up relationships
The warming of relations between DRC and its immediate neighbors, particularly Uganda, has been a reality since Felix Antoine Tshisekedi took the reins of state power in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
It will be remembered that on May 27th, as a prelude to Wednesday’s meeting, which is now historic because it falls within the framework of regional integration, the Deputy Prime Minister, Congolese Minister in charge of Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lutundula, and the Ugandan side, signed in Entebbe, Uganda, two agreements.
The first was intergovernmental, and the second, road, which bears the signature of the Minister of State and Minister in charge of Infrastructure and Public Works, Alexis Gisaro Muvunyi, aiming at the construction of tarred roads on three strategic roads in the link between Uganda and DRC.
The financing of this project is provided by « Dott services united » for 60% of the works, the remaining 40% are borne by two countries up to 20% each, for a total cost of 334.5 million USD.
Uganda’s contribution to the total budget has already been passed by the Ugandan Parliament since 2020, it is noted, while DOTT Service’s Limited will make its return on investment through the toll.
Security at the border separating the two countries
The interest in this road is not only economic, it is also of a security order, Kasindi- Beni axis being often used by ADF fighters in order to lay ambushes against vehicles, motorcycles and traders. .
In this regard, good neighborly relations between the country of Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and DRC have no pitfalls, especially at this time when the action of the valiant elements of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) against the Ugandan militiamen ADF is gaining strength in the provinces under a state of siege.
These Ugandan rebels, active in the northeastern part of DRC, close to their country of origin, are in stampede after being dislodged from several localities they occupied, sowing terror, raping, looting and killing the peaceful peasants. .
What to give satisfaction to the Ugandan authorities for whom the eradication of this militia is a considerable contribution to the stability of Uganda, like the hunt at the time, by DRC, of LRA rebels of Kony, today in the forests of the Central African Republic, far from the Ugandan border.
It is recalled that for this ceremony, the Congolese Head of State, Felix Tshisekedi, arrived by helicopter in Mpondwe, on the Ugandan side, where his counterpart Yoweri Museveni had been waiting for him since the morning. The two presidents had an exchange of more or less half an hour, before heading to Kasindi.