Page 7, 17th February 1961

17th February 1961
Page 7
Page 7, 17th February 1961 — The Congo: LITTLE HOPE
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The Congo: LITTLE HOPE

Continued from page 1 Gizenga and Kashamura the whole business. from M. Moise Tshombe's action in breaking up the Congo by declaring Katanga independent (and thus appropriating 60 per cent. of the country's tax revenue) down to the death of M. Lumumba in what, by any criterion, arc suspicious circumstances, will be seen as part of a plan to weaken the Congo by Balkanising it. Any compromise between Stanlcyville and Elisabethville can therefore be ruled out.

Nor is there much hope of compromise between Stanleyville and 1.&moldville. since it was President Kasavubu and Colonel Mobutu who were responsible for moving M. Lumumba to Katanga, where he has now met his death, Mr. Lumumba arrived comparatively late on the scene of Congolese pulilics, in 1958. three years after Professor van Bilsen had met derision in Belguim for his "Thirty Year Plan" for independence, two years after this had been taken up by the Cot-ode/ice AfTirane group and two years after the formation of Abako.

By an accident it , was M. Lumumba alone who spoke for the Congo at the All African People's Conference in Accra in December that year: M Kasavubu could not go because his inoculation certificates were not in order, At Accra he came under the spell of Dr. Nkrumah, and from then on his political views were inflexible on the question of building the Congo into a unitary state on the Ghanaian model, His chances of success as the first Prime Minister of the independent Congo were hampered by two major initial disadvantages: first. the conditions for building a unitary state were absent, and in particular there was no sufficiently large educated African middle class; secondly, he was unable to come to terms with M. Moise Tshombe, whose control of the wealthy mining and industrial area of Upper Katanga made him an essential partner to any stable political settlement.




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