Pope Francis has called on foreign powers to end the exploitation of Africa’s natural resources. He made this statement when he stopped at the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), as he continued his historical tour in Africa. Addressing the Congolese government authorities and the diplomatic corps in the garden of Kinshasa’s national palace, Pope Francis told foreign powers to “Hands off the Democratic Republic of the Congo! Hands off Africa!.”
The pope complained about centuries of exploitation of Africa by colonial powers, today’s multinational extraction industries, and neighbouring countries. He explained that these exploitations have interfered in DRC’s affairs, leading to a surge in fighting in the east.
Acknowledging the role of foreign interests in the economic “enslavement” of the Congolese people, Pope Francis said, “Stop choking Africa: It is not a mine to be stripped or a terrain to be plundered.”
Pope Francis’s visit to Africa
The Pontiff’s Africa tour has received significant media attention all around the globe. When he arrived at DRC, Pope Francis met with President Felix Tshisekedi and members of the Catholic community. He spoke about the continuing conflict in the country and called for peace and reconciliation among the country’s ethnic groups. He also harped on the church’s role in promoting peace and stability.
Pope Francis also met with representatives from civil society (women’s groups and youth organizations) and encouraged them to use their voices to fight for the marginalised and oppressed.
Pope Francis stops at Madagascar
As his African tour continues, the Revered Father visited Madagascar to talk about the future of the Catholic Church on the African continent. He appreciated the traditional African culture and addressed the importance of fusing them into the church’s teachings and practices. Pope Francis also noted that this will help preserve traditional practices. He further challenged the church to promote inclusivity while respecting the diversity of African members.
Reports suggest Pope Francis’s tour to the African continent will go a long way in preserving the future of the catholic church.
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