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DRC: Interior Minister Gilbert Kankonde ordered to explain Jaynet Kabila questioning

By Jeune Afrique
Posted on Friday, 13 March 2020 12:36, updated on Thursday, 30 April 2020 16:44

Jaynet Kabila, the twin sister of former Congolese President Joseph Kabila
Jaynet Kabila, the twin sister of former Congolese President Joseph Kabila, in Kinshasa in July 2014 (illustration). © John Bompengo/AP/SIPA

The questioning of Jaynet Kabila, twin sister of Joseph Kabila, earlier this year caused significant uproar.

The country’s prime minister ordered the minister of the interior to provide him with a detailed report on the circumstances surrounding the questioning of former president Joseph Kabila’s twin sister.

On 23 February, Prime Minister Sylvestre Ilunga Ilunkamba ordered Minister of the Interior Gilbert Kankonde to explain why Joseph Kabila’s twin sister, MP Jaynet Kabila, was taken in for questioning on 30 January.

“Detailed report”

In the letter, the prime minister confirms that he had been “roughly informed of what happened” and regrets the “deliberately disagreeable behaviour of officials from the Directorate General of Migration [DGM].”

“Given that the matter involves a current MP and hence a member of one of the country’s national institutions, on the one hand, and in order to be fully informed of the facts, on the other hand,” Prime Minister Ilunkamba ordered Mr Kankonde to submit a “detailed report.”

READ MORE: DRC: Félix Tshisekedi pushes back against Joseph Kabila

According to our information at the time of this writing, the minister of the interior had not yet submitted his report.

A “provocation” according to the FCC

Ms Kabila – elected to head the National Assembly’s Defence and Security Commission in October 2019 – was taken in for questioning on 30 January at Kinshasa’s N’djili Airport by a DGM official just as a plane she had boarded was about to take off for South Africa.

The “Jaynet affair” has caused significant uproar: the DGM official responsible for initiating the questioning was called to a hearing by the National Security Council, a body coordinated by President Félix Tshisekedi’s national security adviser François Beya Kasonga.

READ MORE: Jaynet Kabila in DRC: the FCC denounces one “provocation too many”

Then, on 5 February, the “Jaynet affair” was discussed at a meeting of the FCC (Joseph Kabila’s coalition) chaired by Nehemiah Mwilanya. The participants reportedly viewed the incident as a “provocation.”

André-Alain Atundu, a top official of the former president’s coalition, drove this message home on 3 March at a press conference where he denounced “a strategy of provocation, if not political harassment implemented via the targeted questioning of well-known FCC figures” carried out by people, he claimed, who seek to “justify the political split of the FCC and CACH [Tshisekedi’s coalition, editor’s note].”

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