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Vol 53 No 4

Published 17th February 2012


The trouble after Katumba

The death of the country’s quintessential dealmaker leaves its leadership confused and exposed

At the funeral wake on 13 February in Kinshasa for Augustin Katumba Mwanke were two men whose careers had critically depended on him: President Joseph Kabila Kabange and mining magnate Dan Gertler. Both men face growing challenges to their authority and awkward questions about the source of their vast personal wealth. They both benefitted from the financial and political skills of Katumba, who had died on the previous day when his executive jet crashed at Bukavu airport. Witnesses say Katumba was in the cockpit with the American pilot and co-pilot, who also died. Three more members of Kabila’s team were seriously injured.

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