Illegal mineral trafficking has been going on for decades in the DRC, severely undermining the country’s economy. Diamonds, copper, uranium, cobalt, zinc, gold, tin, etc., are stolen without scruples, and the latest round of the law enforcement has made it possible to arrest in Goma, traffickers who exported about 5 tons of coltan.
The destination of these minerals? The border countries, especially Rwanda, from where they will be sold, delegating the Congolese public treasury of its profit. A situation deplored by the Governor of North Kivu, Julien Paluku: Several countries have improvised to produce minerals, while they have no wells. There are even some who bury our minerals, before digging them up again (Editor’s note)».
But that is not all. It is believed that these fraudulent practices could not be carried out without the complicity of some local authorities. Willy Kitobo, the Congolese Minister of Mines, called for the sense of duty of his fellow citizens. It is also considering the establishment of a traceability system, in order to stem the bleeding.
Daniel Mbayo, Regional Director of the Commission against Mining Fraud, is calling for stricter and more punitive legislation to deter traffickers.
Source: Agence Ecofin