1. This report, submitted in accordance with paragraph 55 of the Security Council resolution 2556 (2020), covers developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo from September 18 to November 30, 2021. It describes the progress made in the implementation of the mandate of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) since the latest report, from September 17, 2021 (S / 2021/807). It provides an overview of political developments, as well as information on the Mission’s pursuit of a comprehensive approach to the protection of civilians, stabilization and strengthening of state institutions, and key reforms in governance and civil society. security.
II. Political developments
2. Debates on the state of siege in North Kivu and Ituri, as well as on the appointment of members of the Independent National Electoral Commission, dominated the reporting period.
3. On September 29, the National Assembly adopted an assessment report on the state of siege, prepared by the Standing Committee on Defense and Security following hearings involving members of the government. The report included the identification of allegations of embezzlement of funds for military operations, as well as recommendations for the development of an exit strategy from the state of siege to be presented to Parliament, for the improvement of the conditions of work of the military and police forces and for the prosecution of members of the security forces collaborating with armed groups. The twelfth prorogation of the state of siege was adopted by the National Assembly and the Senate on November 17 and 18, respectively. The deputies of North Kivu and Ituri did not participate in the plenary sessions of the National Assembly on November 17 or the previous one, on November 1, during which the eleventh prorogation was voted, having required a strategy of exiting the state of siege and having expressed their opposition to its continued extension.
4. On October 16, the National Assembly approved the appointment of 12 members of the Independent National Electoral Commission, including Denis Kadima as President. Three posts remained vacant because the opposition refused to forward its list of candidates to protest against Mr. Kadima’s approval. His candidacy was supported by six of the eight religious denominations responsible for identifying the president, but opposed by the Catholic and Protestant churches. On October 18, the Agir en groupe organized for results for the future (AGORA) group called for the inclusion of women as candidates for the Commission, including for the presidency, to achieve a peaceful and coherent process. and respect the provisions of the Constitution, the organic law of the Commission and the provisions of the Government’s action program on parity, equitable representation and the meaningful participation of women in public affairs. On October 22, President Félix Antoine Tshilombo Tshisekedi appointed the members approved by the National Assembly, including four women, including two as rapporteur and sub-quaestor. Mr. Tshisekedi called on the opposition to identify candidates for the three vacant posts and announced the upcoming appointment of a civil servant located in his office who would be responsible for monitoring and ensuring the smooth running of the electoral process.
5. The Catholic and Protestant churches, the opposition, including Lamuka and the Common Front for Congo, and part of the majority denounced the process which led to the appointment of members of the Independent National Electoral Commission. On October 24, together with other actors, they formed a coalition, called the “patriotic bloc,” with the stated aim of advocating for credible, free, transparent, inclusive and peaceful elections in 2023. MONUSCO has engaged with key actors in politics and civil society, including the newly appointed President of the Commission, to promote credible, transparent, inclusive and peaceful political processes with the full, equal and meaningful participation of women, noting that the review to coming from the electoral law could offer an opportunity to advance common goals.
6. Concerns have grown over hate speech, disinformation campaigns and associated tensions, particularly in Haut-Katanga and the eastern provinces. Between September and October, MONUSCO documented 29 cases of suspected hate speech in the country, which was often made possible by disinformation and took place in the context of armed conflict and land disputes and targeted groups mainly on the the basis of their ethnicity. The Mission, along with the Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations during his visit to the country in October, held talks with the Head of State, Government and Parliament to address hate speech. At the Council of Ministers meeting on October 22, Mr. Tshisekedi instructed the government and the National Intelligence Agency to identify and initiate legal proceedings against the alleged perpetrators.
7. The ordinary September sessions of the National Assembly and the Senate focused on budgetary matters. The 2022 finance bill reports a balanced budget of $ 10.2 billion, against $ 7.2 billion in 2021. During a review mission in October 2021 as part of the 1 , $ 5 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under the Extended Credit Facility, the Congolese authorities and an IMF team reached a staff-level agreement that would allow IMF management to consider the approval of a disbursement of a second tranche of funding by December 2021. Despite the persistence of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the economy continued to recover, supported by the increase in mining production and a rebound in non-extractive growth.
8. Relations between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its neighbors have continued to develop positively, in particular through the strengthening of economic and trade relations. From October 27 to 29, Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo held the tenth session of their bilateral joint commission and signed two trade agreements.
9. On 26 October, the Special Representative met with the President of Uganda, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, in Entebbe at the invitation of Mr. Museveni to discuss the security situation in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, the implementation of MONUSCO’s mandate in cooperation with the Congolese authorities and the need to strengthen the use of regional tools to promote peace and stability in the country and the region.