Kinshasa, March 2nd, 2022 (CPA). The Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lutundula, declared Monday, in his closing speech of the 12th Diplomatic Conference, that « to achieve the legitimate ambition of the Head of State, Félix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo, to hoist the DRC at the level of the prosperous countries which count on the international chessboard, requires audacity at the limit of recklessness, the abnegation of the soldier, significant means, the patience of a goldsmith and a work of titan which is long-term and makes time its ally ». This requirement constitutes, according to Christophe Lutundula, the first lesson to be drawn from the three days of discussions borrowed from a critical spirit and love of the fatherland, during the work of this conference, apart from the second, namely: a singular opportunity to allow the actors of the Congolese diplomacy to talk to each other, to perk up and to consolidate the essential bridges between them, guarantees of the effectiveness and efficiency of the foreign policy of the Republic. The third lesson to be drawn from the organization of the 12th diplomatic conference is, according to him: « to provide professionals with insight to better understand the approach, initiatives and actions of the Head of State as well as of the Government in relations with the bi- and multilateral external partners”. With regard to the fourth lesson, the Deputy Prime Minister stressed that it was a requirement of a strong commitment to act, inviting the latter to « renew the oath to always serve the Republic and to faithfully execute, under the very High Authority of the Head of State, its directives as well as the recommendations of the XIIth Diplomatic Conference within the framework of the Government’s program under the direction of the Prime Minister », to restore the image of the DRC in abroad and its diplomatic and consular representations.
A View of Support
Referring to the fifth and final lesson, the head of Congolese diplomacy insisted on the need for support, noting that « no diplomatic action can produce the expected results if it does not enjoy the political support of the President of the Republic and of Parliament as well than material support from the Government. He also requested the support of economic operators, creators of wealth and jobs. In addition to public initiatives and projects, the dynamism and creativity of economic operators are among the sine qua non conditions for the fruitful materialization of cooperation agreements and partnerships concluded with other States, international organizations and private investors. For Christophe Lutundula, the DRC would delay its economic and social development if it deprived itself of the contributions of its state and non-state external partners, in terms of the contribution of fresh capital and budgetary support, to carry out its investment projects. And the administrative reforms it needs, and optimizes the exploitation of its natural resources. « Like the valiant soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo, your representatives abroad, your officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation, Regional Integration and La Francophonie, as well as the other participants in the XIIth Diplomatic Conference, hear only the order of the Commander-in-Chief of the Congolese diplomacy that You are to fire all wood in the accomplishment of their mission », underlined the head of the Congolese diplomacy, launching an appeal to the President of the Republic.
Furthermore, the participants in the 12th Kinshasa Conference made 93 recommendations to the authorities of the country, for good diplomacy in the service of the development of the DRC and peace, taken up in the final report of its work, read by the Secretary General in Foreign Affairs, Joska Kabongo Ngoy. These are administrative, financial and technical recommendations; specific and strategic as well as with regard to international cooperation and the Francophonie.
International cooperation and La Francophonie
The speakers recommended, in this sector, the revitalization of the cooperation sections within the diplomatic representations of the DRC and the adaptation of the cooperation agreements concluded with the bilateral and multilateral partners, in the face of the current challenges of international relations. They proposed giving priority to national expertise over costly foreign technical assistance, revitalizing and encouraging integration projects with the nine neighbors of the DRC, within the framework of the policy of good neighborhood as well as the holding of the general states of international cooperation and the Francophonie, with a view to a complete evaluation of the relations between the DRC and its external partners. The speakers also recommended the intensification of regional and international cooperation in an approach favoring the strengthening of economic relations and trade as well as win-win partnerships, the revitalization of the portfolio of La Francophonie, etc.
Foreign policy, security and diplomacy
The participants in the 12th Diplomatic Conference in Kinshasa recommended the establishment of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in its role as the sole interface for diplomatic missions and international organizations accredited in the DRC, in accordance with the prescriptions of the Vienna Conventions of 1961, on relations diplomatic relations, and of 1963, on consular relations. They proposed to remind the other Institutions and Ministries not to engage the responsibility of the country, without the « full powers » issued by Foreign Affairs, to make the sectoral Ministries and public services of the State understand the need and the duty to obtain prior information on everything related to external relations from Foreign Affairs, but also to periodically present the report on the implementation of the legal instruments ratified by the DRC. Finally, they recommended the establishment of an effective synergy between the Embassies and Consular Posts with the corresponding Geographical Directorates of the Headquarters, by strengthening the authority of the Ministry through the Directors-Heads of Service and by reaffirming the principle of unity of command, both at headquarters and at diplomatic missions and consular posts. ACP/