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What Is Kabila Looking For In Abu DABI?

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Former President of DRC, Joseph Kabila Kabange has been on a secrete trip abroad triggering various theories from political pundits that closely maintain keen interest in Congolese affairs.

Taarifa learned that on the morning of February 22nd, the former president landed at Abu Dhabi airport aboard a private jet rented specifically for this trip.

He had made a stopover in the Zimbabwean capital Harare for a dinner.

Kabila had not made such a tour outside the DRC since his departure from power in January 2019.

It is not yet clear what exactly Kabila is trying to piece up in this secrete trip but there are pointers to this international tour of ten days.

The month of February has been a very busy one for Kabila as his successor and former ally Félix Tshisekedi has been making several changes to the government as he consolidates power.

Paul Akwright Britain’s charge d’affaires in the DRC met with Kabila at his Kingakati residence on February 14th.

The next day, it was the turn of Peter Pham, the US special envoy to the Great Lakes region, to shake hands with the former Congolese president.

Later, it was the turn of Smaїl Chergui, head of the African Union Commission for Peace and Security, to be received at the Kingakati estate.

On condition of anonymity a Western diplomatic source told Jeune Afrique that the objective of these meetings is in particular to “try to persuade Joseph Kabila to make concessions to allow Felix Tshisekedi to strengthen his leadership”.

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Politics

President Tshisekedi More Powerful Under New Government

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After two months of political suspense, DRC’s President Felix Tshisekedi has unveiled his newly formed government under the so-called “sacred union”.

Prime minister formed a new government, marking a shift in the balance of power from former President Joseph Kabila to his successor, Felix Tshisekedi, three years after elections.

Tshisekedi’s spokesman, Kasongo Mwema Yamba Yamba on Monday announced a list of ministers.

A major Mines Ministry has a new head and newcomer Antoinette N’Samba Kalambayi. DRC is the world’s largest source of cobalt and Africa’s biggest copper producer.

Kalambayi has a degree in domestic law from the University of Kinshasa, according to a book she published in 2016 on Congo’s electoral commission.

Prime Minister Sama Lukonde said on Twitter that the average age of the new government was 47, with 27% of the positions held by women and 80% held by people who haven’t previously held cabinet posts.

L-R Prime Minister Sama Lukonde and President Felix Tshisekedi

Below is a full list of the newly formed government under the arrangement of “sacred union”.

Deputy Prime Ministers

DEPUTY PREMIER, MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR, SECURITY, DECENTRALIZATION AND CUSTOMARY AFFAIRS: Daniel Aselo Okito wa Nkoy

DEPUTY PREMIER, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS: Christophe Lutundula

DEPUTY PREMIER, MINISTER OF THE PUBLIC SERVICE, MODERNIZATION OF ADMINISTRATION AND INNOVATION OF THE PUBLIC SERVICE: Jean-Pierre Lihau

DEPUTY PREMIER OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: Ève Bazaiba

Ministers of State

Justice, Keeper of the Seals: Mutombo Kiese Rose

Infrastructures and Public Works: Gizaro Nuvunyi Alexis

Portfolio: Adèle Kahinda

Plan: Mwando Nsimba Christian

Budget: Aimé Boji

Town Planning and Housing: Pius Mwabilu

Rural development: François Rubota

Entrepreneurship: Eustache Muhanzi

Regional planning: Guy Loando

Ministers

Minister of National Defense and Veterans Affairs: Gébert Kabanda

Minister of EPST: Tony Muaba

Minister of Public Health, Hygiene and Prevention: Mbungani Jean-Jacques

Minister of Finance: Nicolas Kazadi

Minister of Transport and Ways of Communication and Opening up: Chérubin Okende

Minister of Agriculture: Désiré Nzinga

Minister of Communication and Media, Government Spokesperson: Patrick Muyaya

Minister of Fisheries: Bokele Adrien

Minister of National Economy: Jean Marie KALUMBA

Minister of Industry: Julien Paluku

Minister of Regional Integration: Didier Mazenga

ESU Minister: Muhindo Nzangi Butombo

Minister of Scientific Research and Technological Innovation: José Mpanda

Minister of Hydrocarbons: Didier Budimba

Minister of PTNIC: Kibassa Augustin

Minister of Digital: Eberande Kolongele

Minister of Employment, Labor and Social Welfare: Ndusi Mpembe

Minister of Land Affairs: Sakombi Aimé

Minister of Water Resources and Electricity: Muenze Olivier

Minister of Human Rights: Albert Fabrice Puela

Minister of Gender, Family and Children: Ndaya Gisèle

Minister of Foreign Trade: Jean Lucien Busa

Minister of Mines: Antoinette N’Samba

Minister of Social Affairs, Humanitarian Actions and National Solidarity: Modeste Mutinga

Minister of Vocational Training and Trades: Kipulu Antoinette

Minister of Youth, Initiation to New Citizenship and National Cohesion: Yves Bunkulu

Minister of Sports and Leisure: Serge Tshembo Nkonde

Minister of Tourism: Modero Nsimba

Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage: Katungu Catherine

Minister of Relations with Parliament: Karume Anne Marie

Minister to the President of the Republic: Manuanina Nana

Delegated minister

Minister Delegate to the Minister of Social Affairs, Humanitarian Actions and National Solidarity in charge of people living with Disabilities and other vulnerable people: Irène Esambo

Vice-Ministers

Deputy Minister of the Interior, Security, Decentralization and Customary Affairs: Molipe Jean Claude

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs: Adubango Samy

Deputy Minister of Justice: Bayubazire Amato

Vice-Minister of Planning: Chrispin Mbadu

Vice-Minister of the Budget: Elysé Makoso

Deputy Minister of National Defense: Séraphine Kilubu

Vice-Minister of EPST: Namasia Aminata

Deputy Minister of Public Health and Prevention: Kilumba Nkulu Véronique

Deputy Minister of Finance: Onyeke Nsele Nsimba

Deputy Minister of Transport and Voice of Communication: Ekila Marc

Deputy Minister of Mines: Motemona Godard

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Tanzania & Uganda Sign East Africa Oil Pipeline Deal

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Presidents Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and President Samia Suluhu Hassan of the United Republic of Tanzania have signed the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline which both leaders described as third victory for the two countries.

Museveni said the two countries have in the past posted military and political victories and now with the oil pipeline deal it is an economic victory.

For President Samia Hassan, this was her first trip outside her country since taking oath as President of Tanzania following the demise of her predecessor John Pombe Magufuli.

At a ceremony broadcast on regional Television channels on Sunday, the French oil and gas exploration company Total E&P, China’s largest offshore oil and gas producer,Cnooc Ltd. and Uganda National Oil Co. were also participating partners.

With this agreement cemented, Uganda is scheduled to turn into a major crude oil producer and exporter.

Total also signed agreements with Uganda to develop this pipeline.

Total CEO Patrick Pouyanne called the signing of pacts a historic milestone for the production work and export pipeline that will draw more than $10 billion of investment.

“It’s a very large development, one of the largest that will be developed on this continent,” though just the beginning of a process that will see oil flow in early 2025, Pouyanne said.

Total’s own $5.1 billion bet on the project is for the rare frontier oil development that’s moving forward as most major companies are cutting spending. It also cements the French energy giant’s position as the leading player in Africa.

Total expects production to reach a plateau of 230,000 barrels per day. That’s higher than the output of Equatorial Guinea and Gabon, two of Africa’s OPEC members.

Under this agreement, the partners will develop the Tilenga and Kingfisher discoveries near Lake Albert, as well as a 1,443-kilometer (897-mile) heated pipeline to transport Uganda’s waxy crude for export at the port of Tanga in Tanzania. The French explorer holds 57% of the oil field licenses and a large stake in the pipeline project.

Last year, Uganda and Total signed a Host Government Agreement (HGA) with the Ugandan Government for the development of the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project. 

The HGA will govern the export pipeline in Uganda and will cost approximately $3.5 billion. Construction was expected to commence in 2021.

Total E&P intends to undergo constructive dialogue with communities and NGOs involved in all project activities.

Uganda’s head of State also said that apart from oil the same corridor can be used can take a return pipeline supplying Tanzanian and Mozambican gas to Uganda and the great lakes region.

The gas according to him will be used to smelt the huge reserves of Iron ore that they have in Uganda.

According to Museveni, this project should serve to awaken all Africans that prosperity & strategic security, are only possible if we use the Pan-Africanist approach that gives us a bigger market & rationalizes economic linkages.

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Burundi, European Union in Second Round Of Negotiations

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European Union and Government of Burundi held a second round of talks on Friday as a follow up on dialogue since President Evariste Ndayishimiye came to power.

Burundi and EU had frozen relations for almost five years until they opened dialogue in December last year.

President Ndayishimiye last year received in audience the Ambassador of the European Union to Burundi, Claude Bochu, along with the Ambassadors of Germany, Belgium and France.

 “It is high time to resolve misunderstandings with mutual respect,” the EU said after meeting with President Ndayishimiye.

There are 6 priorities of President Ndayishimiye including; good governance, public health, education, agriculture and livestock, free healthcare for retirees and youth development.

On December 11, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Albert Shingiro, invited to lunch the Ambassador of the European Union and all the ambassadors of the member countries of the EU present in Burundi. It was during this lunch that the expert teams from the EU and the Foreign Ministry were set up to prepare for a meeting between Minister Shingiro and the European Union and its member states.

Meanwhile, Burundi is no longer considered “a risk factor on the continent”, the Security Council having removed it from its agenda on December 4.

Albert Shingiro, Burundi’a Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation says, “We are confident that this temperature will reach the normal level of warming at the end of this dialogue that we are entering into today with shared determination and wills.”

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