Ituri: MONUSCO is rehabilitating the Komanda - Luna Road Section in Irumu
“We welcome this project very favorably, because the condition of the road from Komanda to Luna is very bad. (…) It will contribute to improving security in the area. This road is very busy with taxis, large and small vehicles with goods on board; however, ADF members are moving about near this road ”.
This statement by the civil society leader in Walese Vonkutu chieftaincy, Dieudonné Malanga, reflects the enthusiasm shown by the population of Irumu after MONUSCO launched, on Friday October 8, 2021, the rehabilitation of the road section between Komanda and Luna, in this territory of the Ituri province.
For the local civil society, this action rekindles hope for the restoration of peace to this area, which has been emptied of its population due to persistent insecurity.
"This rehabilitation will facilitate the movement of the population, as FARDC will be moving on easily to effectively track these rebels", said assuredly Dieudonné Malanga.
Faster and smoother escorts
The work, carried out jointly by MONUSCO peacekeepers from Nepal and the military engineering from the Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC), was launched by the provincial Governor, General Johnny Luboya, who expressed immense joy.
"It is a great joy for me, as you know, after insisting so much for work to resume on this road section. And now it is materializing, ” he said.
“This road section, due to its dilapidated condition, caused us a lot of problems. It caused as many ambushes in its quagmires. Today, in the name of our partnership with MONUSCO, we transport will be fluid on this road section, we will no longer have stuck vehicles and, as far as the escort is concerned, it will take less time ”, he applauded.
For General Luboya, this project is the fruit of genuine friendship between MONUSCO peacekeepers and the Congolese troops.
"We are among friends, because in times of war, if you can have a contingent or contingents coming to your home to protect your populations, they are really great friends. I thank MONUSCO very much,” he said.
A priority project for MONUSCO
For MONUSCO, which supports the Congolese Government in protecting civilians, this project is a priority because of the insecurity which has caused massive displacement of civilian populations.
"The importance of this RN4 [National Road Number 4] is no longer to be demonstrated, in particular the Komanda-Luna road axis in respect of trade, transport of goods for the two provinces (North Kivu and Ituri) and for Bunia ”, explained Teohna Williams, Deputy Head of MONUSCO Office in Bunia.
"Given that many cars had come under ambushes from militiamen because of the quagmires and the bad state of the road, it was essential that this road section be made more practicable for a better security of the populations and their goods", she further said.
For about a month, the work will consist mainly in filling up the large holes that have formed on this road and which make traffic difficult.
Suspected ADF rebels took advantage of the dilapidated state of the road to ambush vehicles.
More than 25 cars and trucks have been set on fire by this armed group in recent weeks.