How we pine for those halcyon days of Nkunda

Some news out of Goma, where President Kabila has been visiting for the past few days. The provincial minister of the interior named a deputy administrator of the territory of Masisi this week. Alexandre Gatembe is a CNDP official and his nomination is supposed to help bring an end to the parallel administration of the territory by the CNDP. Some road blocks have been dismantled, but many others remain and it is obvious that certain tax collectors and military units report to the CNDP leadership.

Tensions within the CNDP have persisted. As described by my anonymous guest blogger her a few days ago, Gad Ngabo’s FPLC seems to be on collision course with his former ally (and alleged cousin) Bosco Taganda. A large number of troops under the command of Colonel Emmanuel (ex-CNDP deserter) were massing in the area around Matanda (Masisi territory), apparently intent on attacking the ex-CNDP troops in the area. Also, over 100km away, in northern Rutshuru, FPLC troops have attacked Congolese army positions twice in the past week around Nyakakoma.

These are not the only problems within the ex-CNDP. On June 2/3, a firefight broke out among ex-CNDP troops in Burungu (Masisi, close to Kitchanga). According to some local source, up to 20 soldier were killed. It isn’t clear what the cause of the altercation was: some say there was an argument over divvying up “surplus salary payments,” others say that ex-CNDP Colonel Innocent Kabundi was unwilling to hand over his arms cache.

A reader asked me in the comment section the other day how to understand this falling out between Gad and Bosco, as well as other CNDP internal divisions. I honestly don’t have my ear close enough to the ground to fully understand. Suffice it to say that the post-Nkunda CNDP has become a mess of internal rivalries and divisions. Neither Kigali or Kinshasa (or even Kampala) seems to be too troubled by this for the moment.