DRC’s General Francois Olenga rallies troops against the M23 rebels
DRC Army Chief of Staff Francois Olenga flew via helicopter from Kinshasa to Minova to rally his eastern FARDC troops against the M23 rebels.
The M23 currently occupies the towns of Sake, 20 kilometers north of Minova, and the North Kivu provincial capital of Goma, 30 kilometers to the east of Sake. The M23 promised to leave Sake and Goma on the previous day because of international pressure, claiming they would begin the process by piling the troops in trucks in Sake by 9am today and transporting them to Goma. However, at the time of the rally, no signs of any M23 troop movement to Goma were evident.
The general was considerably angry toward M23’s continued presence in Sake when we interviewed him today in Minova. He then walked to a large open field nearby where over 2000 of his troops had amassed. There he led a large rally to motivate his troops against the M23 and Rwanda – a country he believed is supporting the rebellion.