Pierre Lumbi Okongo

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Pierre Lumbi Okongo
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
August 1992 – July 1994
Minister of Posts and Telecommunications
In office
July 1994 – .
Minister of State for Infrastructure, Public Works and Reconstruction
In office
5 February 2007 – February 2010
Succeeded by Fridolin Kasweshi Musoka
Personal details
Nationality Democratic Republic of the Congo

Pierre Lumbi Okongo is a politician in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Early career[edit]

Lumbi was one of the founders of the Peasant Solidarity (Solidarité Paysanne) movement, which gained legal status in 1985. The initial purpose was to help the rural masses express their problems, resist forced cultivation of cotton, facilitate sales of their crops and help them find new business opportunities. After establishing a National Council of NGOs, the movement began making political demands, calling for a multiparty system at a conference in Kinshasa in 1991. Lumbi joined the government of Etienne Tshisekedi in August 1992 and April 1993, where he was Minister of Foreign Affairs. He joined the government of Kengo wa Dondo in July 1994 as Minister of Posts and Telecommunications. He was national security advisor to President Joseph Kabila from January 2001.[1]

Lumbi was Minister of Foreign Affairs during the transition. He was the head of the Mouvement Social pour le Renouveau (MSR) party, formed for the 2006 elections. The MSR had its roots in the "Solidarité Paysanne" movement of the 1980s and 1990s.[2]

Infrastructure and Public Works Ministry[edit]

Lumbi was appointed Minister of State for Infrastructure, Public Works and Reconstruction on 5 February 2007, in the first cabinet of Prime Minister Antoine Gizenga.[3] In the second cabinet, announced on 25 November 2007, he retained the ministry.[4] He was confirmed in the ministry on 26 October 2008, in the first cabinet of Prime Minister Adolphe Muzito.[5]

In the summer of 2007 Lumbi paid a visit to Beijing, laying the grounds for signature of an important economic agreement with China. The deal provides for 6.3 billion euros of investment, with 4.2 billion for public infrastructure development and 2.1 for mining works. Project management would be the responsibility of a joint enterprise, Sicomines, in which the DRC holds 32% of shares. The work would be assigned to the China Railway Engineering Corporation (CREC) and Synohydro Corporation, two giant Chinese corporations. It would include construction of roads and railways, hospitals, universities and housing. In return, the Chinese were promised access to copper, cobalt and gold supplies. The barter arrangement reduced the possibiility of corruption, an important consideration in the DRC.[6]

In 2009 the World Bank expressed concern about the way the projects were being managed. A commission set up by the DRC National Assembly found that over US$23 million in signature bonuses had gone missing, apparently siphoned off by local government officials and officers of the state-owned Gecamnines. Pierre Lumbi refused the commission's request for an interview. There were also complaints that the Chinese were failing to use local labor as agreed, and were using cheap imported materials for projects not covered by the project. Some parts of the project had stalled.[7]

Later career[edit]

In the second Muzito cabinet, announced in February 2010, he was replaced as Minister for Infrastructure by Fridolin Kasweshi Musoka. He was named special advisor to President Joseph Kabila on matters of security.[8] Lumbi's Mouvement social pour le renouveau was preparing to compete in the upcoming elections as a member of Kabila's ruling coalition.[9][10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Historique". Aid Watch. Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  2. ^ "Président du Mouvement social". Le Potentiel. 13 December 2005. Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  3. ^ "Publication de la liste des membres du gouvernement Gizenga 1". Digital Congo. 06/02/2007. Retrieved 2011-11-17.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  4. ^ Paulin Kamate (28 November 2007). ""Gizenga II" pourrait-il réussir là où "Gizenga I" a déçu faute". Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  5. ^ "Publication de la liste des membres du nouveau gouvernement congolais". African Manager. 2008-10-27. Retrieved 2011-11-18. 
  6. ^ Colette Braeckman (September 2009). "Le Congo et ses amis chinois". Le Soir (Bruxelles). Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  7. ^ "DR Congo's missing millions". Africa Asia Confidential. 1-02-2010. Retrieved 2011-11-22.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  8. ^ "Joseph Kabila remanie le gouvernement". Le Potentiel. 20 February 2010. Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  9. ^ "Congo Elections: MSR, pas de découplage des scrutins". Le Congo. 8 August 2011. Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  10. ^ "Pierre Lumbi Okongo reprend les rennes du Msr". Le Phare. 2 August 2011. Retrieved 2011-11-22.