Congolese in Nigeria have resorted to prayer so that God can intervene and help end the conflict in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Following a fresh eruption of war in the Eastern DRC, dozens have been reported dead, while information from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) shows that at least 170,000 people were displaced since November 2021.
Rwanda-backed rebel group M23 and the Islamist rebel group the Allied Democratic Forces, which was originally formed to fight in Uganda, have been highlighted as the major drivers of this latest rise in conflict.
To ordinary Congolese residing in Nigeria, the war back home has defied all solutions, including a peacekeeping mission by the United Nations.
Ordinary Congolese believe the never-ending conflict is on account of superpowers fueling the fight, to cheaply acquire mineral resources in the DRC.
In the effort to play a role in making the situation better, the Congolese in Nigeria have now resorted to asking for spiritual intervention through prayer. This was the position of the Community of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in Nigeria when they organized a Prayer/Concert to commemorate the 62nd independence anniversary on June 30, 2022.
The prayer session which was held at the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Throne of Grace on Moloney Street, Lagos Island, was tagged ‘Arise DRC’.
Organized by the League of Francophone Pastors in Nigeria, the prayer sessions were to pray for God to intervene in the affairs of the DRC when all hopes of human intervention have failed.
President of all Francophone Parishes and Churches in Nigeria, Pastor Daniel Kalombo blamed the superpower nations for fueling the war in the DRC because of their selfish agenda.
“DRC has been a victim of what she has as natural resources. There is a glaring conspiracy by the international community against our neighbours, Uganda, and Rwanda. They are using these two nations to create war in DRC. So, we are using this prayer concert to praise God for the independence celebration and at the same time ask Him to intervene for lasting peace in our country,” Pastor Kalombo said.
“We expect the United Nations to have brought this crisis to a stop, but they have been on the ground in the last 18 years with little or no progress,” he added.
According to the Pastor, the conspirators fueling the war in the DRC control the United Nations. With this control, Pastor Kalombo says the Congolese no longer trust the United Nations.
“You can see that all the resolutions by the Security Council have not been adhered to. The only one that was enforced was intended to prevent a sovereign nation (DRC) from buying weapons to prosecute this war, but our enemies were given free access to these weapons. This is unfair and it shows that the UN itself is a participant in the war,” he says.
He adds that the UN’s failure to stop the war is also amazing given how long it has been there.
“It is quite amazing that the 17,000 UN troops stationed in the Eastern Congo over the years have not been able to bring a stop to the war. There is a hidden agenda. The open secret is that we are now charging the United Nations to be part of the problems in DRC because it is benefitting from what is going on in the crisis,” he says.
Pastor Kalombo then used the opportunity to call on the rest of the world to support the DRC’s efforts to end the war.
The Chairman of Congolese in Diaspora living in Nigeria, Dr. Kanu, agreed with Pastor Kalombo that the DRC is in the middle of an international conspiracy, which directly and indirectly inflicts pain on the people. He wondered how the possession of strategic natural resources could be a curse on the DRC and her people.
“It is so sad that countries like the USA, UK, France, Canada and others in the West created a kind of civil war using some rebels in the eastern part of our country where they are killing, kidnapping, raping our women and killing children just to create insecurity for them to siphon whatever is under the ground.
“You can see that this case is something that we need God to actually intervene on our behalf,” says Kanu who also decried the UN Security Council’s decision to block the DRC’s access to weapons.
“That is why we need God and I appreciate the initiative of our pastors who organized this prayer concert,” says Kanu.
Dr Kanu floated the idea of approaching Russia for help but added that it also had its pitfalls.
“We won’t do that because if we do, we may be attracting a bigger war like the one going on in Ukraine. We organized the prayers for spiritual intervention because we believe that God can do a lot on our behalf to stop these killings,” he noted.
According to Dr. Kanu, the claim that the war in Eastern Congo is about ethnicity is untrue. There have been cases of people claiming that the current fight in the DRC is an attempt to get rid of Tutsis and M23 is thought to be fighting for the interests of people considered to be of the same ethnicity as Rwandans.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who is also Tutsi has even come out to say that if the Congolese plan to get rid of a part of the population believed to be Rwandan, the DRC should cede some of its lands. That way these people who have for decades lived, farmed, and owned land in the DRC would have a place to settle and even thrive.
The Congolese in Nigeria, however, insist that it is all about the minerals.