n African Renaissance - The Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration (DDR) process in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Volume 4, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1744-2532
  • E-ISSN: 2516-5305


During a visit to the Institute for Security Studies in January 2007, Ambassador Ajelo, the European Ambassador for the Great Lakes Region, who retired recently from the position, made it clear that the completion of the Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration process and the start of Security Sector Reform (SSR) are crucial for the successful post conflict reconstruction process in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ambassador Ajelo could not have been more correct with this remark. On 22 March 2007 all hell broke lose in Kinshasa between elements of the Forces Armées de la Républic Démocratique du Congo (FARDC), the Republican Guard (GSSP) and elements of the Détachement de Protection Présidentielle (DPP) of Jean Pierre Bemba. In the process it was estimate that 600 people died and millions of dollars damage was done to property. The reason, the non-completion of the DDR process in the DRC. The importance of the DDR and SSR process was again emphasised by the newly appointed European Ambassador for the Great Lakes Region, Ambassador Roeland van Den Geer during a presentation at the ISS on 24 April 2007. According to planning by the Commission Nationale de Désarmement, Démobilisation et Réinsertion (CONADER) the DDR process should have been completed on 31 December 2006. It however did not happen because of various reasons of which the most important was the lack of political will from parties to come to the demobilisation process, funding and logistics. Efforts by MONUC and the international community to speed up the process in November 2006 failed because of the same reasons. The international community and MONUC is currently busy trying to move the process forward with new funding made available by the World Bank to CONADER and also individual contributions by the international community. The events of 22 March 2007 have made a serious impact on the stability of the future political situation in the DRC.

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