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DR Congo shows interest in joining EAC

Felix Tshisekedi waving after he was announced as the winner of the DRC elections in Kinshasa. He has taken a move to join EAC. (FILE PHOTO)

KINSHASHA – The Democratic Republic of Congo President Felix Tshisekedi says his country is willing to join the East African Community (EAC) to deepen its economic ties with the region.

Tshisekedi said the EAC will benefit the citizens of Congo more, especially those who reside in the eastern part of the expansive country.

Speaking when he met President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya at State House Nairobi, Tshisekedi, who was declared the winner of the disputed vote where his competitor Martin Fayulu claimed he was the people’s favourite, added that the expansive country would benefit more if it was a member of the EAC.

The two agreed on strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries with Kenyatta offering to train Congolese public servants in Kenya, reports the East African paper.

Citing the importation of goods to DR Congo through Kenya, President Kenyatta called for the deepening of trade ties to boost the two countries’ economies.

The President observed that a lot of Congolese imports passing through the port of Mombasa are goods destined for Goma and Lubumbashi which is the eastern part of DR Congo.

Tshisekedi acknowledged the important role played by the port of Mombasa to the economic wellbeing of the expansive Congo which has a population of 70 million people.

Tshisekedi said the Kenyan government offering to train Congolese civil servants is an opportunity that will go a long way in helping the country achieve its development goals.

The two heads of state said they would explore ways and means of making business between the two countries smoother.

Kenyatta assured his counterpart of Kenya’s commitment in helping the DR Congo achieve political stability.

“We will continue to help you achieve peace and stability because we have had similar experience which we can share. Our country has been able to calm down political temperatures through the famous Building Bridges Initiative,” Kenyatta said.

Kenya has for decades hosted refugees from the Great Lakes nation with some Congolese nationals becoming Kenyan citizens.

The DR Congo President was on a three-state maiden tour and he arrived in Nairobi on Wednesday afternoon after visiting Angola and before heading to Congo Brazzaville in the next leg of his tour.

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