The Democratic Republic of Congo

28.02.2013 | Program: Byblos Autumn School

The Democratic Republic of Congo – Democracy at Gunpoint[1]

Pamphile Mabiala Mantuba-Ngoma – Theodor Hanf – Beatrice Schlee


“The title of this book prepares the reader for an account of nearly 16 years of political change in the Democratic Republic of Congo. From 1990 to the 2006 elections the process of democratization went hand in hand with bullets. Political violence could jeopardize the process at any time. To hold onto power, violence was necessary. To snatch a patch of liberty, violence was indispensable”…….




  • Ø A country doomed to pillage?  The Congolese crisis in historical context                                                                    
    • The Congo Free State:  A private mining company runs as an absolute monarchy 
    • The Congo, a model paternalistic colony
    • The “Congolese swarms”
    • Afro-militarism: one country pillaging another
    • The open militarization of the intra-African relations
    • From the erosion of alliances to the outline of a peace settlement
    • Memory of terror in the occupied regions
    • The pillage of Congo’s resources
    • Geography, geo-economics and geopolitics:  Reflections on the Congo and the concept of the “Great Lakes”


  • Ø The long political transition in the DRC (1990-2006)   Positive Aspects and Vicissitudes
    • The nature of the process of transition
    • The actors of the process of transition
    • The Sovereign National Conference as a founding act of democracy
    • The war “for democracy” and the rupture of the democratic process (1996-2002)
    • The inter-Congolese dialogue and the new political order
    • The challenges of the transition’s institutions
    • The elections and the end of the transition


  • Ø The risks of interethnic coexistence in the East of the Democratic Republic of Congo
    • The issues

-The nationality question

-The question of the land

  • Cattle and the big farms
  • The actors
  • Positioning strategies
  • The Congolese state and the hazards of interethnic coexistence
  • What should be done?


  • Ø The question of Congolese nationality
    • Territorial history of Congo
    • The evolution of legislation on nationality (1892-2004)


  • Ø Political negotiations and the peace process in the DRC
    • The peace summits for the DRC
    • The inter-Congolese political negotiations: from Gaborone to Pretoria


  • Ø The demographic reality in the post-conflict Congo
    • What is the population of the country by territory?
    • Administrative map of the DRC
    • The Urban network of the DRC


  • Ø The educational system in the Democratic Republic of Congo – Challenges and stakes
    • The colonial educational legacy in the DRC
    • The golden age of education in Congo
    • The decline of the educational system
    • Solutions to ameliorate the educational system


  • Ø The economy of the Democratic Republic of Congo in the post-conflict phase
    • Reorientation of the tea market
    • Hombo-Champuja oil palm Plantation
    • Planning the future


  • Ø The Constitution of the Transition – positive points and pitfalls
    • The positive points of the Constitution of the Transition
    • The pitfalls of the constitution


  • Ø The Congolese judicial system – inventory and future perspectives


  • Ø The military dimension of the Constitution of the Transition


  • Ø Civil society’s contribution to building democracy in the DRC


  • Ø Congo – a hopeless case?

Perceptions of democracy and politics in DRC




















[1] ) English version - 2008