“No, United Nations is Not Leaving Tanganyika Province”
Marcelline Comlan, in charge of Public Information for MONUSCO Office in this province explained on Friday May 6 in a meeting held with roughly fifty young people in Kalemie, including around ten girls.
The question of the Mission’s exit is currently on everyone's lips in the province. MONUSCO’s withdrawal from Tanganyika is equated with the United Nations’s departure from this province, which is not the case.
To dispel misunderstandings and false information around this subject, MONUSCO office, in partnership with the Network of the Congolese Youth Associations (RACOJ) organized an awareness session for about fifty young people from the United Methodist Church community.
Marcelline Comlan explained “MONUSCO’s exit does not mean the United Nations’ departure from the province”. She underscored that the UN Agencies, Funds and Programs will step up development-related activities in the area for the benefit of the local communities.
While several young people expressed their fear of seeing a flare-up of insecurity throughout the province after MONUSCO’s departure, Marcelline Comlan indicated that MONUSCO and the Defense and Security Forces will continue to work together to stabilize the areas where there are persistent pockets of insecurity, particularly in the territories of Nyunzu and Bendera.
Popularizing the transition plan
For the past few months, representatives of MONUSCO office in Kalemie have been meeting with members of the different sections of the population and active forces to explain the Mission's transition plan and provide details on the arrangements made for its departure.
After meeting with women's groups, civil society, religious and traditional leaders a well as political-administrative and military authorities, it was now the time to meet with the youth movements in that area on May 6.
On that occasion, Marcelline Comlan further explained to the young people the transition plan and the the key areas of the Mission's mandate contained in the UNSC Resolution 2612 (2021).
“Our mandate lays particular emphasis on the protection of civilians,” she insisted.
The discussions also focused on several other issues relating to gender, sexual violence and the participation of women and young people, DDR, a real opportunity to disseminate the UNSC Resolution 1325 (2000).
“Women, peace and security” and also the Resolution 2250 (2015) “Youth, peace and security”.
Raising awareness of the fight against Covid 19
The Covid 19 pandemic was also discussed during the meeting.
François Xavier Mybe, a journalist for Radio Okapi, raised awareness of the students about the gestures and barrier measures to observe in order to limit the spread of this pandemic in schools.
In his speech, he called on students to be more mindful of the need to observe the barrier gestures in order to protect themselves and others. “So I urge you to wear your masks well; an to wash your hands regularly”
The awareness-raising session wrapped up with a competition focused in particular on MONUSCO’s mandate and the process for its withdrawal. The winners received prizes, including loincloths, pens, bracelets with the emblems of the Mission.
At the end of the meeting, some students thanked MONUSCO for the information-sharing session, and said they were now fully equipped to deal with the false information circulating around the withdrawal of the Mission.