Yet again there are exploits of conflicts and the resources. The latest UN Group of Experts Report on the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) establishes this fact. This isn’t a shocking revelation, as this has persisted for so long. The illicit and trade of minerals in the DRC to the neighbours have been going on for years. Where the militias and other “rebel” outfits have exploited the porous borders.
What was striking was a few of the sentences and that this of business continues. That the ones enriching themselves continues in haste. Producing, exporting and trading illicit gold. This is being exploited and extracted in the DRC. Later illegally exported to Burundi and Rwanda. We know this also happens to Uganda in the report. However, they have not stated the scale there. As we know the Gold Refinery in Entebbe for illegal gold exports.
Here is excerpts from the Report:
“Three mining authorities confirmed that cross-border gold smuggling between South Kivu (see S/2020/482, annex 45) and Burundi and Rwanda had increased during the COVID-19 lockdown. Two authorities explained that this was because, while gold production continued, border closures reduced the value of dollars hand-carried into the Democratic Republic of the Congo for illicit gold transactions. According to official mining data, 30.6 kg of gold were officially exported from South Kivu between January and October 2020, while official gold production was 7.1557 kg between January and September 2020 according to mining authority data” (United Nations Experts Report December 2020, P: 19, 2020).
“The Group noted that, as was also the case in 2019 (see S/2020/482, annex 16), as of October 2020 official recorded gold production for South Kivu was far lower than the volume of gold exported. Total gold production as of September 2020 was 7155.7 grams, while exports were 30.6 kilograms for the year up to October 2020. Following the COVID-19 border closures, only two gold trading comptoirs – Etablissement Namukaya and Etablissement ML – exported gold in the second half of 2020 until the time of drafting this report. Bukavu-based gold trading house Mines Propres SARL suspended its operations in South Kivu as of February 2020, but confirmed to the Group that construction of Congo Gold Raffinerie (see S/2020/482, annex 25) continued in its place (Karim Somji, an associate of Congo Gold Raffinerie also owns Mines Propres SARL” (United Nations Experts Report December 2020, P: 186, 2020).
This here story isn’t a new, but it shows a pattern. Where there is more production than recorded. More gold produced than what is initially registered. This here is proof of the illicit trade, as the records itself states.
The Est. Namukaya is even mentioned an export to Kampala to Muzira Bravia Ltd. A company the UN Group of Experts couldn’t find in a registry. Therefore, that is easy an front and not the true company who imported this gold. That could easily be another concealment.
However, all this here just shows that its big business to trade gold illegally and illicit trade of conflict minerals. Where the DRC is not getting reported wealth out of their resources. While the militias and others are profiting on the mines. That is reality of this. Peace.
This is the sort of thing that haunts a person. Especially someone who used all means to get to power. Sooner or later, the sins of the past will come to haunt you. The deceased person who you thought was long forgotten. The legacy of the ones before you will be answered eventually. Apparently, the crimes of 21st October 1993 is now being answered.
As former President Pierre Buyoya of Burundi is now charged to 18 years in prison. That is happening, while his the African Union High Representative to Mali and Sahel. This is really a critical stage, as he has had warrants and court cases in Burundi. However, now his officially charged for the murder and assassination of Former President Melchior Ndadaye on that day in 1993.
There was reports that army chief of staff Jean Bikomagu took President Ndadaye to a army base. Where he let two soldiers put a cord around his neck and stabbed him to death. This was deliberate act of murder. As soldiers was ordered to kill the previous toppled President. A vicious act from the new leadership under Buyoya.
President Buyoya later did sack Bikomagu, but then the act was already done. He was involved in the assassination of Ndadaye, the first elected President of Burundi. While he used the military and the armed forces to get power in the Republic. Therefore, the charges and the life sentence is only reasonable, as the man needs to answer for his crimes. Together with another 18 persons as well. Who was all committed to do this.
It is that simple, a tragedy that needs to be addressed. I don’t expect Buyoya to return and actually serve the time. As his safe in exile and has a title. He can return to Addis Ababa or elsewhere. Where his welcomed and is respected, but this is the same man that called an election in 1993 and lost massively. Therefore, he needed months after the loss a coup d’etat and assassinate the victor. So he could cling onto power.
That is the sort of fella Buyoya is and that shouldn’t be forgotten. So, Ndadaye won in end of June 1993 and sworn in July. Killed three months later, by the loser who couldn’t manage seeing another man on top.
This is the sad reality. A wound that need to be patched up and Buyoya needs to answer for this. That is the right thing, but I doubt he ever will. Surely, he will find a safe haven somewhere with help of his allies within the African Union. That would most likely happen after his term in the AU.
Not that he would be transferred or deported to Burundi. There would be somewhere and someone wanting to have the former dictator in exile. That always happens, especially, if another dictator have sympathy and want to ensure his safety. Because, they are worried that one day the Courts will go after them. Peace.