This is a collaborative event between Sub-Sahara Advisory Panel, Oxfam Cymru, Hub Cymru Africa, South People's Projects (SoPPro ), Sanctuary Groups in Wales, Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Congo Development Project.
The conflict in the Eastern Congo has been going on for nearly two decades and is one of the deadliest since World War 2. The current conflict in the Eastern Congo has its roots in the Rwandan genocide of 1994, when many of the Hutus who perpetrated the genocide, fled into the DRC after being forced out of Rwanda.
This event will look at some of the challenges created by the long running conflict including an increase number of refugees in Western parts of Uganda and the threat of Ebola. As part of the event, we will hear from members of the Welsh-Congolese community on existing links between the 2 countries and the diaspora in Wales at large.
To lead us on these discussions, we will screen a short section of the film called 'The Man Who Mends Women' which is about conviction and commitment; about how Dr Mukwege’s struggle has lasted for 20 years despite the obstacles thrown in his path and the threats to his life; about how he built a hospital with psychological and legal departments to physically and psychologically support women, and how he fights on a daily basis alongside these women to put an end to the causes of violence in his country.
Winner of the Sakharov Prize 2014, Doctor Mukwege is internationally known as the man who mends thousands of women who have been raped during the 20 years of conflicts in the East of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one of the poorest countries on the planet, despite its extremely rich sub-soil. His endless struggle to put an end to these atrocities and denounce the impunity enjoyed by the perpetrators is not welcome. At the end of 2012, the Doctor was the target of another attempt on his life, which he miraculously survived. Threatened with death, this doctor with an exceptional destiny now lives cloistered in his hospital in Bukavu under the protection of the United Nation peacekeepers. But he is no longer alone in his struggle. The women for whom he has help restore physical integrity and dignity, stand beside him, true activists for peace, hungry for justice.
We will also get to hear from Otis Bolamu, a Congolese asylum seeker from Swansea whose campaign to remain in the UK captured the nation. Zawadi Mbula, an activist who has roots in Congo and Wales, and works in Congo supporting internally displaced people will share her story on the impact of the conflict and the work she does.
2.00 Arrival and Refreshments
2.30 Setting the Scene: Norbert Mbu Mputu on Wales/Congo connections
2.50 Screening of 'The Doctor Who Mends Women' followed by panel discussion with live skype to Dr Makwege and Zawadi Mbula (TBC)
3.50 Coffee Break and Entertainment
4:00 Understanding refugee welcome in Uganda: Learning from Cafomi
4.20 Otis Bolamu – a journey to Wales and a warm Welsh welcome
4.35 What next?