D.R. Congo: Head of Presidential Guards Tshiwewe Emerges Army Chief

Head of Guards Emerge D.R. Congo Army Chief (News Central TV)

Lieutenant-General Christian Tshiwewe Songesha has been appointed as the new chief of general staff of the armed forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo by President Félix Tshisekedi.

The 54-year-old general will take over for Gen Célestin Mbala Munsense, who has served in the role since July 2018, according to a statement released by the president’s spokesperson on Monday evening.

Gen Célestin Mbala Munsense

According to French television station RFI, Gen. Munsense is one of the army veterans who will be retiring. Since 2020, Tshiwewe has served as the president’s security force commander. He had his training in the Kinshasa Defense Academy, Sudan, and Angola.

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For thirty years, the Congolese army has been engaged in conflict with armed groups in the east of the nation.

The M23 armed organisation has gained ground against the army over the past three months and is now in control of the North Kivu provincial border town of Bunagana and the territories nearby.

With senior officers being detained and the fighting in the country’s east continuing, Christian Tshiwewe will confront many difficulties. The most recent development saw the M23 rebels take control of Bunagana for over four months.

General Léon-Richard Kasonga, the army’s spokesperson, is now now in charge of administration and logistics as the army’s deputy chief of staff.

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General Ephraim Kabi Kiriza, who was formerly ranked third in this regiment, will now be in charge of the Republican Guard.

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