Congo-Kinshasa: President Felix Tshisekedi Fires Mining Boss Albert Yuma Mulimbi

Republic of the Congo President Felix Tshisekedi signs Secretary Mike Pompeo's guestbook before their meeting at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on April 3, 2019.
5 December 2021

Kinshasa

The Democratic Republic of Congo President Felix Tshisekedi has sacked the head of the state-owned mining company Albert Yuma Mulimbi.

Mr Mulimbi was chairman of the board of Gécamines, the largest state-owned mining company in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Through orders read out by the president's spokesperson Tharcisse Kasongo Mwema on Friday, President Tshisekedi appointed new managers at the Directorate General of Taxes and the Directorate of Customs.

Mr Mulimbi, a close relative of former DRC president Joseph Kabila, has headed Gécamines since 2010.

Until Friday, Mr Mulimbi was one of the last relatives of the former president to hold a major position in Mr Tshisekedi's government.

He has been replaced by Mr Alphonse Kaputo Kalubi. Mr Thambwe Ngoy was named the company's director-general.

The ousting of Mr Mulimbi was welcomed by many. On his Twitter account, Peter Pham, former US special envoy, welcomed what he called "the break" with the Kabila regime. "This could be the beginning of a new break with the system of the past," he wrote.

Mr Mulimbi, who has been at the helm of Gécamines for over 10 years, was also a long time administrator at the Central Bank of Congo. He is the chairman of the Federation of Enterprises in Congo, a private organisation that brings together all the major private sector companies in the DRC.

He was cited in the Congo Hold Up investigation as having facilitated the embezzlement of Gécamines funds for the benefit of companies associated with the Kabila family.

He once boasted that he "raised Gécamines when the company was on the verge of bankruptcy".

As head of this major mining company, he was the architect of the introduction of the new DRC Mining Law (the mining code) in 2018.

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