DRC: For a new political and administrative system

Here and now, DRC needs a structured thought and a doctrine to structure the society if we want to be a ”modern” and meaningful Nation to itself and to other African countries! The current Congolese political class is – now – in trouble to indicate to people the right way to go for a real change as an expression of the collective intelligence. Democracy rests on the principle of ”compromise” between political forces as institutional expression of consent of those who are led. This is why we can say that the current system of lack of popular participation in the management in the basic entities and ‘‘parallel government’’ at all levels (“political laboratories”) is not a ‘‘democracy’’! Without a proper state governance, there is no true democracy in the DRC!

1. Vision for a new configuration of the Central Government

In the DRC, one thing is certain: the outright liquidation of the current public administration – a former colonialist organization – but now in tatters. A fundamental change is needed. We must now consider replacing this current public administration inserted within Ministries by independent governmental agencies and by enforcement of modern principles of public management.

State governance is based on some social value. Social value is conceived by men and women and should exist as a ”culture” to be extensively ”communicates”, validated by ”education” and fertilized by ” science” in a modern world. A social value becomes a “central social value” if it “gives” to society the main norm for social behavior of individuals.

It is then the responsibility of a State to use ”communication”, ”education” and ”scientific research” to improve social condition ”people” by considering value behind material production, while ensuring the necessary – internal and external – ”security” to them, providing ”energy” and ”water” which are essential to this material production.

To do this, it is necessary to reckon with the” local government” by organize society at the lowest level and by maintaining a good ”external relationship’’ with other states if we want to get what our own people need but which this people can not produce on site.

But, there are important specific tasks to be fulfilled if we want to hatch a lasting peace in society: to ensure ”health” to men and women and – consequently – protect their ”environment”, while providing active support for dynamic modern social life in terms of organization of ”transport” and” telecommunications”.

Therefore, it is necessary to deal with the inevitable conflicts of interest by distributing a good of” justice” by guaranteeing to every one – respect of ‘‘fundamental human rights” and by ”economic regulation” of social activity to the benefits of the vast majority of people ” through some technical institutions.

That is why it is imperative for the political power in a state to design a critical path of the desired or expected changes by a ”planning’’ of the development – to coordinate the today youth activities which inside we find gestated future generations by using ”sports” as an incentive to the necessary boldness to later innovations and ”tourism” as a way of self-discovery through others.

This presupposes the existence of a government, based on a concept of” national solidarity” for in the distribution of burdens and benefits among citizens – in action – through “Public Service”.

From the above description of the “core social value”, we could derive lasting concerns that can be supervised by 15 ministerial functions which description and content are below.

The Central Government in the DRC should permanently have the above configuration:

  • A Prime Minister for the Coordination of ministerial duties.
  • 15 Ministers of State for the political management of spheres of activity here clearly identified.
  • Delegate Ministers attached to State Ministers for the management of sectoral policies.

Delegate Ministers would be invited occasionally to defend or explain some records to the Council of Ministers. State Ministers should have a greater visibility and be able to discuss all issues.

A Delegate Ministry would lead a sectoral and public policy in collaboration with one or two governmental agencies for implementation, A governmental agency should be conceived as a ”public institution” for the State. Only State Ministers would be part of the Council of Ministers.

2. A permanent configuration of the Central Government

Each Delegate Ministry should be lead through a legal framework covering a specific area and so to avoid continual amendments to certain sectoral concerns today in the Constitution of 18 February 2006.

Governmental or public policies should be measured through performance indicators in terms of effectiveness (achievement of objectives) or in terms of efficiency (resources and time used to achieve objectives ), before deciding on the relevance of its continuity !

The Prime Minister have to organize:

  • Weekly meetings for all State Ministers ;
  • Quarterly meetings for State Ministers and Delegate Ministers ;
  • Annual seminars of all Ministers of Central government and provincial Governors accompanied by the members of their Local Governments.

Councilors of Ministers and support staff for government activities should be under a special status as officials assigned to help the governmental work under a Secretary General of the Government.

I. STATE MINISTER FOR MATERIAL PRODUCTION

1) Minister Delegate at the Food Production: Agency: National Centre for Food Production

2) Minister Delegate to Export agriculture: Agency: National Centre for Export farming

3) Minister Delegate for Livestock: Agency: National Centre for Livestock

4) Deputy Minister for Fisheries: Agency: National Institute for the Control and Promotion of Fisheries

5) Deputy Minister of Mines and Metallurgical Industry: Agency: National Center for Mines and Metallurgical Industries

6) Minister Delegate for Manufacturing Industries: Agency: National Center for Manufacturing

II. STATE MINISTER FOR ECONOMIC REGULATION

1) Deputy Minister for Public Accounting: Agency: National Department of Public Accountancy

2) Minister Delegate for Budgets: Agency: National Service Public Expenditure

3) Deputy Minister of Commerce: Agency: National Institute of Commerce

4) Minister Delegate to State Portfolio: Agency: Central Institute of State Portfolio

5) Deputy Minister of State Purchases and Supplies: Agency: National Service of Supply

6) Deputy Minister of Governmental Revenues: Agency: National Service of Public Revenues

7) Deputy Minister of Financial Institutions: Agency: National Service for Financial Institutions

III. STATE MINISTER FOR ENERGY AND WATER RESOURCES

1) Deputy Minister for Electricity: Agency: National Service for the Production and Distribution of Electricity

2) Deputy Minister of Hydrocarbons: Agency: National Service of Hydrocarbons

3) Minister Delegate for Water: Agency: National Service for Water

IV. STATE MINISTER FOR EDUCATION AND SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH

1) Delegate Minister for Literacy : Agency: Congolese Institute for Literacy

2) Delegate Minister for Nursery and Primary Schools: Agency: Central Institute of Nursery and Primary Schools

3) Delegate Minister for Professional and Secondary Schools :Agency: Central Institute of Professional and Secondary Schools

4) Delegate Minister for Higher Schools and Universities: Agency: Congolese Institute Universities and Graduate Schools

5) Delegate Minister for Scientific Research: Agency: Congolese Institute for Scientific Research

V. THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR DEFENSE AND SECURITY

1) Delegate Minister for Armed Forces: Agency: General Staff of Armed Forces

2) Delegate Minister for Security Services: Agency: National Intelligence Service

3) Delegate Minister of Police: Agency: National Police

VI. STATE MINISTER FOR YOUTH, SPORTS, TOURISM & LEISURE

1) Delegate Minister for Youth: Agency: Congolese Institute for Youth

2) Delegate Minister of Sports Organizations: Agency: Congolese Institute of Sports

3) Delegate Minister of Tourism and Recreation: Agency: National Agency for Tourism & Leisure

VII. STATE MINISTER FOR SOCIAL CONDITION

1) Delegate Minister for Mutual and Social Security: Agency: Congolese Institute Mutual and Social Security.

2) Delegate Minister for Employment: Agency: Congolese Centre for Employment

3) Delegate Minister for Housing and Habitat: Agency: Congolese Centre for Human Settlements

4) Delegate Minister for Family and Gender: Agency: National Centre of Family and Gender

5) Delegate Minister of peasant condition and informal businesses: Agency: National Service for Peasants and informal Trades

VIII. STATE MINISTER FOR JUSTICE AND HUMAN RIGHTS

1) Delegate Minister for Judicial Institutions: Agency: National Service of Judicial Institutions 

2) Delegate Minister for Good Governance: Agency: Permanent Central Institute for Structural Reforms

3) Delegate Minister of Participatory Justice: Agency: Congolese Institute for communities

4) Delegate Minister for Human Rights: Agency: National Institute for Human Rights And Agency: National Institute of Inventions and Trademarks

IX. STATE MINISTER FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS

1) Delegate Minister of Land Affairs : Agency: National Office for Land Affairs

2) Delegate Minister of People :Agency: National Office for Population

3) Delegate Minister for Community Affairs: Agency: Conversion Fund for Customary Authorities

4) Delegate Minister of Management of Cities: Agency: National Office of City Development.

X. STATE MINISTER FOR PLANNING

1) Delegate Minister of Statistics and Surveys: Agency: National Institute for Statistics and Surveys

2) Delegate Minister to the Plan: Agency: Agency : Planning and Investment Promotion

3) Delegate Minister to Public Works: Agency: National Agency of Public Works

XI. STATE MINISTER FOR HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT

1) Delegate Minister to Public Health : Agency: Congolese Agency of Public Health

2) Delegate Minister to Medical Institutions : Agency: National Support Agency for Medical Institutions

3) Delegate Minister to the Conservation of Nature: Agency: Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature

4) Delegate Minister to Forests: Agency: National Center for Forestry Operations

XII. STATE MINISTER FOR TRANSPORT & TELECOMMUNICATIONS

1) Delegate Minister to Road Transport: Agency: National Agency ofRoad Transport

2) Delegate Minister to Maritime Transport: Agency: National Agency of Maritime Transport

3) Delegate Minister to Rail Transport: Agency: National Service of Railway Transport

4) Delegate Minister to lake and river Transportation: Agency: National Service of Internal Navigation

5) Delegate Minister to Civil Aviation: Agency: National Service of Civil Aviation”

6) Delegate Minister to Telecommunications: Agency: National Telecommunications Service

XIII. STATE MINISTER FOR CULTURE AND COMMUNICATION

1) Delegate Minister to Arts and Culture: Agency: Institute of Arts and Culture

2) Delegate Minister to Media: Agency: Central Institute of Public Information

3) Delegate Minister to Institutional Relations: Agency: Central Institute of Institutional Relations

XIV. STATE MINISTER FOR EXTERNAL RELATIONSHIP

1) Delegate Minister to Foreign Affairs: Agency: Commission Congolese Foreign Affairs and Agency: Office of Management Diplomatic Representations (OGRD).

2) Delegate Minister to International Cooperation: Agency: Congolese Agency for Supervision of Cooperation Projects.

3) Minister Delegate to Regional Cooperation: Agency: Congolese Agency of Regional Cooperation (CAC).

XV. STATE MINISTER FOR PUBLIC SERVICE & NATIONAL SOLIDARITY

1) Delegate Minister to Public Administration: Agency: Central Institute of Public Administration.

2) Delegate Minister to the National Solidarity: Agency: National Solidarity Centre (NSC)

3. The issues of Public Administration

Congo – Kinshasa would be a public administrative organization in the form of specialized agencies that are public institutions of an administrative nature. Management of those agencies would be entrusted to Managing Directors overseeing specialized services to assume all exhaustive tasks that may be performed by a deliberate organization.

Every governmental agency should include following departments :

  • Department of Administrative Affairs
  • Department of Financial Affairs
  • Directorate of Operations (subdivided into specialized and specific services)
  • Department of Compliance.

The Directorate of Operations should comprise a body of experts to work on the ground, On behalf of a government agency, they have to make reports of its interventions while formulating technical and administrative recommendations to the Central Government and the decentralized entities, in the purpose to implement various governmental decisions – really and effectively- on the ground.

Branch Compliance would consist of two divisions:

  • • The division of internal control Internal said ”Audit” to ensure compliance of internal management procedures of the Governmental Agency.
  • • The external control division said ”Inspectorate” to ensure compliance of external activities under supervision of the Agency to its basic mission.

There would therefore be an existence of ”inspectors” for schools, ”inspectors” for the garrisons of the armed forces for security services, inspectors for tax services, Inspectors for public expenditure, Inspectors for scientific research, ”Inspectors” for commerce, …

The Compliance Department would be responsible for the development of administrative, financial and technical procedures in touch with the Delegate Ministry for Public Administration – through an agency: the Central Institute of Public Administration, by taking into account recommendations from the Directorate of Operations and an equitable burden between agents within the governmental agency.

With the assistance of the Compliance Department, the Directorate General of each Governmental Agency should submit reports on ‘‘Internal Evaluation of Public Policy’’ at the ‘‘National Commission for the Assessment of Policies’’’ attached to the Parliament.

The mission of the ‘’National Commission for Assessment of Policies’’ – on behalf of Parliament – would be to discuss governmental sectoral projects and some frameworks for laws, to formulate – in collaboration with Delegate Ministries – suitable performance indicators for policies in terms of effectiveness (achievement of objectives) or efficiency (resources and time resources to be allocated for achieving objectives).

The ‘’National Commission for Assessment of Policies’’ would – periodically – conduct an external evaluation of public policies at governmental agencies in cooperation with the Departments of compliance located within those agencies. The purpose of the assessment of a public policy should be the rule on the relevance of its continuity, its modification in a given direction or its outright liquidation.

The General Inspectorate of Finance would be a simple structure of coordination, otherwise there would be duplication as each agency would have its own financial sector Inspectorates”” (inspectorate of government revenue in the National Department of Public Revenue, Inspectorate accounting standards within the National Department of Public Accounting inspectorate of public expenditure within the National Service Public Expenditure Portfolio inspectorate within the National Institute of State Portfolio Inspectorate within the National Service Supplies Inspectorate and the State in the National Service for Financial Institutions. All Inspectorates within Government Agencies should be able to certify the activities inspected within their field missions.

The General Inspectorate of Finance would be a simple structure of coordination, otherwise there would be duplication: each agency in the financial sector would have its own ” Inspectorates” (inspectorate of governmental revenue, Inspectorate for public accounting, inspectorate for public expenditure , inspectorate for state portfolio Inspectorate for Supplies Inspectorate for Financial Institutions.) All Inspectorates within Government Agencies should be able to certify activities inspected within their field missions.

At the organizational level of the state, it is important to conceive of the existence of a state Department of Public Service & National Solidarity-with two Delegates Ministers, namely the Delegate Minister for Public Administration and the Delegate Minister for National Solidarity :

  • • Delegate Minister for Public Administration: to organize the management of the public administration (and public services and institutions under the supervision of governmental agencies), as a system of contracts to encourage flexibility and performance of the agents, permanent status being exceptional, specific and motivated and to ensure the Public Service in collecting and harmonizing proposals from Compliance Directorates of governmental agencies.
  • • Delegate Minister for the National Solidarity : to promote multiple forms of insurance in the public sector, to maintain effective and responsible relations with unions within Public Service by extending the notion of national solidarity to a fair distribution of burdens between state officers and to establish governmental structures of national solidarity in case of disasters and collective accidents.

4. The inspiration for a new territorial configuration

This proposal lies in the prospect of a ‘highly decentralized” territory but through a reconfiguration of ”districts” to consider in a new territorial division!

To do this, the suggested reconfiguration was inspired by the division of the provinces as delineated in the Constitution of 18 February 2006, but in the logic of making those provinces rather administrative bodies to coordinate all services devolved from central government in the purpose of supporting 2 or 4 autonomous districts with genuine local governments. The new division of the territory into autonomous districts would be done by taking into account the sociological reality in the exercise of the administrative management of public affairs.

I consider two territorial divisions into force in the DRC :

  • The provinces under the Constitution of 18 February 2006
  • The dioceses of the Catholic Church grouped according to certain criteria sociolinguistic

The exercise here is to find the optimum combination to meet both the criteria of economic viability for the development and sociological affinity to get consistent administration!

Map I: The provinces under the Constitution of 18 February 2006

rdc2

Map II: The dioceses of the Catholic Church grouped according to certain criteria sociolinguistic

carte-des-dioceses2

The politico-administrative entity ”Territory” should completely disappear. There will be new entities called ”Cantons” which would correspond at the current ”Colllectivties” in rural areas and at the current ” Districts” in urban areas. The new ”autonomous districts” should directly oversee those ”Cantons”. Canton should mentor ”Municipalities” which correspond to current ”groupements” in rural zones and to current ”Communes” in urban area! In general, the new districts suggested here correspond to existing dioceses of the Church Catholic, possibly with slight modifications in their erection.

The administrative hierarchy could be – locally – the following:

  • Devolved province : Support of autonomous districts
    • Autonomous district : political autonomy
      • Canton : coordinating and supervising activities of municipalities
        • Municipality : internal devolution in a District
          • Cells : Framing populations

An Autonomous District should have its own political, administrative and technical institutions. But, all local institutions should be harmonized across the country to facilitate an effective support to them or an efficient collaboration with the Central Government through its public administration whose competence would be exercised at the level of provinces! Unlike the current situation where local administrations are simply divisions of Public Administration of the Central Government! It is at this level we could find the second innovation of my proposal!

Table 1: Equivalence of politico-administrative entities

Local equivalence

5. A new territorial division of DRC

The DRC should be a unitary state but heavily decentralized, with 47 districts with local self-governments, but supervised by 20 ‘devolved’ provinces to coordinate central government’s agencies at the provincial level.

Table No 2 : Provinces and autonomous decentralized Districts with local governments

Provinces and districts

Under this suggested reconfiguration of the Congolese territory:

  • Provinces would be headed by ‘‘Resident-Ministers’’ in charge of supporting autonomous districts through administrative services devolved from central government.
  • Districts would be autonomous entities with local self-government and whose elected governors should be genuine political local leaders. Local administrations should be effectively implemented in those autonomous districts.
  • Exception: Kinshasa would be a province but having attributes of an autonomous entity as City-District: The political leader of the City would be a Resident- Minister for the Coordination of devolved services from central public administration but he should – first – be elected as the Governor of this City-District ! Simply, the Central Government would take note of his election as governor of the city-district before to appoint Him as Resident Minister, governmental ‘’Delegate’’ to this entity !
  • 26 ”decentralized” provinces of the Constitution of 18 February 2006 wouldn’t disappear but rather be reconfigured into 20 devolved provinces or into autonomous districts within those devolved provinces.

Thus, there would –in DRC – intermediate instances of coordination between the central government and the autonomous entities – the devolved provinces -. thing the division into provinces of the Constitution of 18 February 2006 did not foresee This is the first innovation of my proposal : to call this territorial organization, a ‘ federal system” or a ”system” very highly decentralized , it would be – just – an academic matter !

6. A new structure of local governments

Local Government District would consist of Executive Departments at whose head would be appointed as Executive Councillors (not Ministers) in the following structure:

Local governments in the Districts would be therefore integrated into the above premises and subdivided Executive Departments into Local Directions, Local Directions (Districts) into Cantonal Offices and Cantonal Offices into Municipal bureaux .

Table 3 : Functional structures of local governments

Local departments

The Governor of a district should consider himself as Local ”Head of State” , but with support from the central government via the devolved provinces.

7. Roles of a Resident- Minister in a Province

For controlling the politico-administrative entities, there should be – at national level- a State Ministry of Local Government working with following Delegate-Ministers:

  • Delegate Minister to Land Affairs : to record and maintain an inventory of land ownership at the local, provincial and national level by ranking them into relevant categories and pursuing a policy of effective and balanced use of land.
  • Delegate Minister to Population Management: to organize a functional civil registration system, demographic and socio-economic censuses and give support to a National Commission for the Organization of the Elections, attached to the Parliament.
  • Delegate Minister o Community Affairs: to ensure the socio-political Conversion of Customary Authorities into socio-economic actors at the community levels by funding projects initiated by them for their grassroots communities.
  • Delegate Minister to Management of Cities: to give -politically and technically- support to local governments in their quest for development of cities.

Resident Minister in the province should have political advisers who would be responsible for the monitoring the activities of governmental at the provincial level, except in the City of Kinshasa which would be directly healed by the local government. The number of advisers should correspond to the number of ministries to oversee the departments of government agencies in the province.

Ordinarily, the Resident- Minister in the province would have to work with the Provincial Directors of governmental agencies of Public Administration, Governors of Districts and their own advisers, and, through a consultative body called” Council Province”.

‘’Provincial Council”  would include following people :

  • Resident- Minister in the province.
  • Governors of Districts.
  • Provincial Directors of governmental agencies.
  • Political Advisors of the Minister Resident in the province.

8. A new local political system in DRC

The DRC could be a heavily decentralized state with 47 autonomous districts with local governments and own public administrations grouped into 20 devolved provinces to give support to these districts..

The political expression would be like following :

  • The people directly elect councils cells (urban and rural);
  • Councils cells elect their delegates to vote Municipal Colleges (rural or urban);
  • Municipal Colleges elect or designate their delegates who should sit to the Local Assemblies on the basis of individual applications or a specific form of co-optation.
  • The number of members of a local assembly will depend on the population size of the District. They would be called ”Legislative Councillors”.

Governors of districts would be elected by the Local Assemblies. Resident-Minister of the province would be appointed by the President of the Republic on the proposal of the Council of Ministers.

This is the third innovation of my proposal : the management of a province would be entrusted to a person not originate of that province while Districts would be run locally by elected officials ! The fear on the difficult management of large multi-ethnic states would thus be evacuated in Congolese institutional architecture.

Once elected, the District Governor should appoint ”Executive Councillors” (local ministers) of his local government and Administrators od the Cantons for the supervision of administrative services devolved from District to Municipalities. Peculiarity : a district governor would be under control of local legislative assemblies.

Mayors (appointed at the municipal level by the governors of districts) ould be under the control of Municipal Colleges. A sanction against a mayor should be immediately perceived as a sanction against the District Governor.

Table 4: Executive bodies and decision-making bodies at the local level

Local powers

9. A new organization of powers at the national level

This proposal opts for a new political system fundamentally based on the consideration that ‘‘truth’’ and ‘’justice’’, ‘‘common values’’ and ‘‘common interests’’ are important for a ‘‘centrifugal democratic system’’. The institutional architecture below has been proposed in this direction to fight against the prevailing inertia of underdevelopment in the DRC !

DRC would have two political institutional blocs at the National Assembly:

  • • The Institutional Bloc for Justice
  • • The Institutional Bloc for Liberty

Table No 5 : Powers and executive decision-making bodies at the central level

Central powers

It is not to oppose” Justice” and” Liberty”, since the two concepts are – in facts- the two sides of a same yearning for human dignity:

  • The ”Justice” focuses on issues like ‘‘equality’’ and ‘‘order’’ in society. This is the question of the ” Republic” in a Nation
  • The ”Liberty” highlights the concepts of ‘‘individuality’’ and ‘‘innovation’’ in society. This is the question of ‘‘Democracy’ in a Nation.

Only at a particular moment, and for the well-being everyone can feel the need to promote one aspect rather than another. Specifically, the elections took place at a specific time and each voter must be able to locate what members of his family, of his community and of people need most – freedom or justice – a that particular time ! More Justice or more Liberty ?

The answer to this question must be – cyclically – a choice that every adult person would be required to operate throughout its life. Only a democratic system allows – politically – the realization of this choice in peace. I suggest a democratic institutional architecture that allows such ideological alternation.

Procedures of setting up those institutional blocs and their conventions could be like below :

  • Presidential elections should be organized after the election of national MP. Elected MPs must enroll in one or another institutional bloc, via a mandatory pre-existing political party. Members of blocs should be political parties.
  • Each national MP should choose his Bloc Institutional membership before the presidential elections. The bloc with a maximum National MPs should become the ‘‘Majority Bloc’’ in the lower chamber of Parliament (the National Assembly).
  • Institutional Blocs should organize their ‘‘Electoral Conventions’’. Each Elected MP would be entitled to a” ticket” from his political party to the Convention of his Institutional Bloc. The” ticket” for an electoral convention would entitle a National MP to appoint, in addition to himself, two Legislative Councilors (local MPs) to whom he trusts for this purpose.
  • The Legislative Councilors (local MPs) who are willing to convey a National MP to an Electoral Convention of any Institutional bloc are themselves ‘‘participants’’ to this convention. The high number of delegates to a particular convention is not only a matter of prestige for a specific political party but also an opportunity to impose its doctrine and its supporters into the country’s political institutions.
  • Registered political parties to institutional bloc would have therefore – from the outset – the daunting task of attracting most Elected National MPs to control an Institutional Bloc which they belong within the National Assembly.

Better still, these political parties would then have the chance to attract – later-most Legislative Councilors (local MPs) to the Convention of their institutional Bloc. Registered political parties have an interest in developing doctrines and political alliance strategies – as much as possible-to get more elected National MPs and more Legislative Councilors from districts – hoping to get more tickets to the above conventions and control institutional blocs.

The triumph of a leader of a political party would be his election an Electoral Convention as Candidate to Presidential Elections or as Head of Institutional Bloc within the National Assembly. To do this, it is not necessary for him to be a MP but it would suffice to have a very good reputation, very clear political ideas, good relationship with people, good personnel and make an excellent outreach to get elected in a convention.

Moreover, the fact that national MPs can attract Legislative Councilors from districts , this involves ongoing and fruitful contacts between the two levels of people ‘s representation of the people ( National Assembly and local Assemblies), while ensuring political confrontation of ideas at national level with a possibility of political convergence of those ideas at the local level. That is why there would be ”institutional blocs” at the National and not local level. The Senate, as extension of the local Assemblies at national level would the place to attest or not those political ”confrontations” and ”convergences”!

Therefore, Institutional blocs should be :

  • Ex-post ‘’political groups’’ for a control of the National Assembly and local Assemblies.
  • Ex-ante ‘‘political groups’’ for the presidential elections. .

The Institutional Majority bloc having scored the highest National MPs elected into the National Assembly (Bloc) should appoint :

  • Its Presidential candidate.
  • The Head of its Parliamentary Group within the National Assembly.
  • The Leader of the Institutional Majority Bloc outside of National Assembly
  • The Institutional Minority Bloc would become parliamentary opposition and should appoint its leaders:
  • Its presidential candidate.
  • Head of the Parliamentary Group within National Assembly).
  • The Leader of the minority institutional bloc outside of National Assembly.

The Senate would be – above all, a matter of” wise” to moderate the ideological and political fervor expressed at the National Assembly. The Officers of institutional blocs should have the function of preparing essential elements of the political agenda and form national key political alliances.

Once elected, the leader of an institutional bloc should keep contact with the leaders and cadres of political parties who participated in the convention and would ensure that its resolutions are implemented by political parties on the ground on behalf of institutional block. He and members of his office would report to the National Assembly of the next Parliament, before formation of new blocs, majority and minority. A financial arrangement should be found to finance the activities of the Office of Institutional Blocs.

The Heads of Parliamentary Groups would rather oriented their activities inside the National Assembly.

10. Presidential elections

The President of the Republic should be elected by universal, direct, secret and chosen by the people between the two candidates, one from the Institutional Majority Bloc and another from the Institutional Minority Bloc.

The purpose of the elections by universal, direct and secret suffrage President of the Republic is to highlight modern and democratic aspects of the political system. It would be a presidential system in which Parliament would possess very important legislative powers of control but could not overthrow the government! Political powers should significantly be separated to mark the republican character of the new political system.

Two cases are possible: the President of the Republic may be elected from either the Bloc Institutional of Majority or Institutional Bloc of Minority !

In the event that the elected President of the Republic is from the Institutional Bloc of Majority, there shouldn’t be – in principle – a confrontation with Parliament.

Once elected, the President of the Republic would have these following key functions:

  • He would appoint a Prime Minister, coordinator of government activities. In this case, The President of the Republic is responsible for the governmental policy before the National Parliament, by interposed Prime Minister.
  • He would lead the policy of the Central Government and oversee all activities of government agencies by interposed ministers.
  • He would appoint Resident-Ministers in provinces on the basis of proposals regularly discussed in the Council of Ministers.
  • He would represent the State, within and outside the country. It can not be signed cooperation agreements or international conventions without regularly discusses in the Council of Ministers.
  • He would chair the National Security Council.
  • He would appoint ambassadors on the proposal of the Council of Ministers.
  • He promulgates laws and decrees regularly discussed in the Council of Ministers.

In case the President of the Republic is elected from the Institutional Minority Bloc,he should constantly seek to be reconciled with the Legislative Majority, headed by the Leader of the Institutional Majority Bloc

He would appoint a Prime Minister from the parliamentary majority as the main coordinator of government activities. This Prime Minister would appoint ministers, lead the policy of the Central Government and oversee the activities of government agencies by interposed ministers. It would be entirely responsible for government policy before Parliament.

The functions of the President of the Republic would be the following :

  • He would represent the State, within and outside the country. He would sign all cooperation agreements or international conventions as regularly discussed in the Council of Ministers.
  • He would chair the National Security Council.
  • He would appoint Resident-Ministers in provinces, on the proposal of the Council of Ministers.
  • He would appoint ambassadors on the proposal of the Council of Ministers.
  • He would promulgate laws and decrees regularly discussed in the Council of Ministers.

Both leaders should constantly strive for a consensus on the key issues of the nation in a stylish and modern political uses. The Government of the Republic should be headed by the Prime Minister and -the policy of the nation conducted by him but the areas of Defense, Security and Foreign Affairs would be lead in collaboration with President of the Republic. So – in all cases – the Prime Minister would define, in consultation with the President of the Republic, the politics of the nation and assume responsibility.

In case of major difficulties with Prime Minister, the President of the Republic renegotiate with the majority bloc to appoint another. If the President of the Republic considers that cohabitation is really impossible with the parliamentary majority on fundamental issues of social values, he would convene a National Congress composed of the Senate, National Assembly and all Local Assemblies.

If the President of the Republic receives the majority and therefore the confidence of the National Congress, the President of the Republic may appoint its own Prime Minister. Here, we return on the first case where governmental policy of government Republic is conducted under the political leadership of the President of the Republic, …but by using a systematic veto against any resolution of Parliament contrary to government policy during the remainder of his mandate.

If the President of the Republic does not obtain the confidence of the National Congress, the Presidency of the Republic would be automatically vacant. In case of vacancy – and law enforcement on the vacancy of the presidential office, the President of the Senate would act on behalf of the State, as acting President of the Republic.

In this case, the acting President of the Republic would ensure the organization of the election of the new President of the Republic at the National Congress level to finish the term of the previous President of the Republic. However, if the remaining term of the previous mandate is less than 12 months, the acting President should hold general elections.

11. Mandate of elected leaders

The question is important in terms of the die which must be used to influence the policy of the Government of the Republic.

It seems reasonable to give the President of the Republic a single non-renewable term of eight years in the DRC. The mandate of 8 years is two terms of the United States President in which political structures are stable from long time ago. It also corresponds to a long legislature to deal with big issues of internal development in our African countries. In the institutional logic above, this implies also 8 years mandate for National MPs who has the power to organize conventions for the election of the President of the Republic. For these National MPs, the mandate should be only once renewable (maximum 16 years)!

To influence these 8 years mandates, The Constitution should contain some mechanisms to over control them. Therefore, the Senators should be elected for a term of four years, renewable 2 times (maximum 12 years) ! This implies that local elections would be held every 4 years!

In fact, the renewal of local political instances (Municipal colleges, local Assemblies and local governments) every 4 years would be also an important moment at the national. It is necessary to give the Senate the power to convene the National Congress – concurrently the President of the Republic:

  • To ‘‘punish’’ the Government of the Republic, despite strong support at the National Assembly.
  • To ‘‘punish’’ the President of the Republic or the Prime Minister on a matter of social values lurking behind his political management, …by forcing him to resign either before or after a motion of no confidence at the National Congress or …by passing a ‘‘Question’’ to a popular referendum.
  • To prevent, in cases of high treason, the President of the Republic to exercise if the National Assembly fails to bring him to justice.

In the institutional architecture here proposed, Congolese democracy would require – every 8 years – to organize presidential elections before the end of September. In November, all National MPs and all local Legislative Councilors – should have been elected and in February, it should indeed mark the beginning of the term of the elected President.

13. Conclusion

The Congo needs a new – internal and global – organization of its society to grow endogenously. The above innovations call for a necessary revision of the Constitution of 18/02/2006. My intention was to signify that it is imperative to change the Constitution to facilitate an emergence of a sustainable and cumulative process of progress in the DRC. An Historical compromise between political and social forces – including Joseph Kabila – is necessary to be set up before any constitutional change. Otherwise, Joseph Kabila should be eliminated – through law or fact – before any constitutional change. The difference between these two ways is a politician matter …certainly important – but still a politician matter !

Jean Munyampenda, Economist

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *