December 18, 2012 by Invisible Children
At MOVE:DC we hosted a Global Summit on the LRA which consisted of a panel of leaders from countries and global institutions with the highest stake in ending the LRA crisis. It was the first time that all of these international leaders gathered to discuss the ongoing conflict and what steps need to be taken to stop Joseph Kony once and for all.
Below are some reflections from Dianne Luping, Mboligihe Ndalu, and Alexis Mbolinani who spoke at the Summit.
“On November 17, 2012, I was privileged and honoured in being able to attend the Global Summit on the LRA on behalf of the Prosecutor of the ICC. The MOVE:DC initiative was a rejuvenating and heartwarming experience: seeing so many thousands of young people motivated by such a passion and commitment to international justice.
I understand there were young people from about 60 countries who attended. I hope they continue their support of the ICC’s work by helping to put the arrest of the three top LRA commanders – KONY, ODHIAMBO and ONGWEN – at the top of every government’s political agenda, so we can turn the promise of “never again” into a lasting reality.”
International Criminal Court
Mboligihe Ndalu (left) with Mark Avola, the civil society representative from Uganda
“My experience at the MOVE:DC event was eye-opening, inspiring, and hopeful.
It was a eye-opening to me especially as far as Resolve, Invisible Children, and The Enough Project work is concerned. I have personally met with some staff members of those organizations on the field both in Central African Republic (CAR) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). I had not understood the depth of their work on behalf of the people who suffer the atrocities of the LRA in the respective affected countries until I was in DC and moved from one office to another in the USA Government offices as the pre-organized work of those three organizations cited above. It was evident to me those staff have regular and respectful relationships with the USA Government officials.
They did a marvelous job organizing the work. Our lodging, food, and transport, the warm welcome… Throughout the march I was surrounded with people who talked to me and were willing to talk with me even when I had to finally to leave the event.
MOVE:DC also opened my eyes to see thousands of people sympathizing with us. I saw those who drove miles to attend the event. I walked with thousands over a mile under the shouts: “Kony must stop!” “No more harm!” “We want peace!” All those people living in peace and security disturbing themselves for us troubled people… They made me feel loved, encouraged, and supported.
MOVE:DC was inspiring to me. I am a “dreamer,” and very often I dream above my capacities. Sometimes I face challenges. It will take time for me to forget the inspiring words of the first speaker on the event, Mr. Sean Stephenson. He was in a wheel chair. This man really challenged me and inspired me to always clearly define the objectives of my dreams and follow their realization boldly until the completion despite the oppositions or obstacles facing me on my way.
Finally, MOVE:DC was hopeful. I left Washington DC with the feeling that the USA Government is sufficiently informed of the fact that Joseph Kony and his rebels are still active in DRC and CAR. I left knowing that since the lawmakers are informed, something is going to be done to stop Kony and his atrocities.
MOVE:DC was a unique anti-LRA violence event; a kind I have never attended since this rebellion had hit our homeland. I congratulate the organizers of MOVE:DC. I thank them for getting me involved and I encourage them to go forward until Joseph Kony and LRA are stopped. “
- Mboligihe Ndalu,
DRC Civil Society
Alexis Mbolinani (right) with Senator Carl Levin
“Thank you for having me join my colleagues of other countries affected by the LRA and to experience how young people and decision makers are engaged for the rights of vulnerable African people.
Many things impressed me during the Global Summit, among which are:
1- The involvement of American young men and women on behalf of vulnerable Africans.
2- It has favored the link between JUPEDEC with the Minister Delegate of Defense and other authorities who didn’t trust JUPEDEC in the past with regard to the LRA problems in CAR.
3- Invisible Children has linked JUPEDEC with other American partners such us Usaid, United States, and the Michigan Senator (to whom I gave the memorandum during the Global Summit), Wellspring Advisors who decided to send Miss Summer to visit us in the region, etc…
4- Civil Society focal points of areas affected by the LRA in Central Africa were together, sharing experiences, and got different contacts for coordinated actions in the region with the support of Invisible Children and other donors involved in the LRA phenomena.
5- I have also noticed and learned an extremely good understanding of the professionalism in the network between Invisible Children and Resolve.
6- The presentation based on leadership made by Sham at the Convention Center has been a great example for those who think that they are nothing and couldn’t do anything.
May God bless your commitment for His glory through these children and adults in captivity or who are back and traumatized.”
- Alexis Mbolinani,
CAR Civil Society