The Équateur District's distinct area was originally known as Cuvette-Centrale province, having separated from the first Équateur province in 1962. Léon Engulu served as the only president (later, governor) of Cuvette-Centrale from 1962-1966.
In 1966 Cuvette-Centrale province and first Équateur province were reincorporated into the second Équateur Province by the Mobutu regime.
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