Congo: Back in the Bush

On the balcony of the only stone house in the thatch-roofed Katangese village of Musongo last week, a middle-aged potentate stared dully as a dance troupe of local girls frantically undulated their hips before him to the rhythm of pounding drums. Slouched on a throne consisting of a grey army blanket thrown over a schoolroom chair, his feet resting on a leopard skin, the Lunda tribe's newly installed 25th Mwata Yambo (Great Chief) received the adulation of his people. His ascension is an interesting case history of the tribalism that is still deeply rooted in the Congo; for on...

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