Sunday, December 27, 2015

Profile of Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa, pioneer CEO of MNCOM ,Congo's largest privately owned Media Group

Whatever the case, I still have respect for Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa. I also know that, she is a good God fearing Christian woman who is different from the rest of the Nguesso ruling family. The other good, loyal, humane and humble Nguessos that I have come across are her brother, Eugene Nguesso, her late cousin, Edith Lucie Bongo Ondimba, her father, Maurice Nguesso, her younger brother Rodrigue Nguesso, her younger sisters Marina and Jenifer Nguesso and her cousin Edgard Nguesso. Nevertheless, there must still be some good Nguessos that, I have not come across, for it will be grossly unfair on my part to generalize or rule that, they are all bad mannered.  This simply means that, there are some good as well as some bad Nguessos, like in any other family.  As for Eugene Nguesso, he might look disorganized, unkempt and has the features of rogue, but he is a nice, humble and gentle humane man. But Eugene Nguesso has not received any sound formal education. There is another night club going Nguesso known as Kondo. He has the attitude of a feline and wily as a hare. He is the chair of a football team called Kondo Sport FC.

One doesn’t know for sure where he stands politically, although he is proud, but he at least has some respect for others. However, the sad thing is that, it is more often than not, those who ruin the reputation of the ruling family that, are always seen or noticed because of their show and tell conducts. Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa has three other things that she admires and loves best. She likes and loves her parents, especially her father, Maurice Nguesso and her uncle, Denis Sassou Nguesso. She also loves her family and children and loves and respects her husband, Mr Jean De Dieu Kourissa MP.  She has a fourth passion. It is aeronautics. She developed that passion while in Gabon when her cousin, late Edith Lucie Bongo Ondimba was the first lady and late President Omar Bongo Ondimba introduce her into aeronautics and she had a small firm that specialized in the hiring or as intermediate for people and organizations that wanted to hire aircrafts in Gabon and within the sub region. She even wanted to open an aviation hiring company in Congo, but her project was taken over or usurped by her cousin Jean Jacques Bouya MP. Anyway that was what she told me and she can’t lie.


Jean Jacques Bouya MP is minister at the presidency of the Republic in charge of major public works. But it was in Paris, France that, Mrs. Kourissa decided to rename the Fanion Media Group into MNCOM. MNCOM stood for Maurice Nguesso Communications. She told me that, she was inspired by the American businessman by name Donald Trump, whose name is attached to almost all what he (Donald Trump) does. However, while there is no problem with Donald Trump using his name as label in the USA, it is not the same with Maurice Nguesso. Mrs. Lydie Kourissa told me that, she wanted her father’s name to be attached to the transformation and name change of the Fanion media, which she was preparing to rename as MNCOM. But she quickly discovered that, Nguesso, their family name was not popular in Congo. It is in fact a liability. The name was however popular between 1997 and 2000. The  Nguesso name fell out of grace when her uncle President Denis Sassou Nguesso put aside all what he deplored in his pre-1997 campaign book: Denis Sassou Nguesso, le manguier, le Fleuve et la souris, JC Lattes, 1997. 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Donald Trump is an inspiration: the case of Maurice Nguesso

Maurice Nguesso is an extraordinary man, but he is most often than not, criticized by members of his own family.  Why? Simply because of the way Maurice Nguesso does things. He is too opened minded to the liking of some members of the ruling clan and more, Maurice Nguesso is not tribal, racist, regional oriented or nationalistic as most of his family members are. It is true that, Maurice Nguesso seems to be more socially oriented and the management of some of his investments is sometimes questionable. However, criticisms coming from a section of his family, who are themselves not paragons in management or social life is not an event and also doesn’t remove the fact that, Maurice Nguesso is a highly creative, imaginative and inventive man. How did the media group originally called Fanion, the parent company of Radio Television Fanion and the daily Le Fanion, became known as MNCOM? According to Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa, the eldest daughter of Maurice Nguesso: it was when her father Maurice Nguesso, fell seriously sick and was taken to Paris, France for proper medical attention, which Congo’s ruined medical system could not offer.


She added: My father thought that, he was going to die. And he decided to write his will and put me, Mrs. Kourissa at the head of all his investments. The exact year is not known or I have forgotten as at the time that, I decided to put this in writing. And I could not write or call her to ask because, our relationship has fallen apart, since she did not say anything when the Police of Congo with the tacit support of her uncle of a president attacked my home and my younger sister gang raped. And I was expelled on the 26th of September 2014, because, I dared criticized what happened to me. May I write here on that, Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa and I had agreed verbally that, I should not write anything that I will see in the way the country was being governed by her uncle, President Denis Sassou Nguesso. However, I felt that, that verbal pact was blown up when her uncle who had promised to protect me in the discharge of my duty as a journalist, allowed or could not muster the courage to denounce the brutality meted upon me and my younger sister on the 10th of September 2014 by the Congolese National Police Force, headed by General Jean Francois Ndenguet, who is an alleged war criminal.

Her uncle has also not said anything since my expulsion on fallacious grounds on the 26th of September 2014. This simply shows that, President Denis Sassou Nguesso supported what happened. If not, why has he not intervened? Is he trying to claim as many have told me that, he is not aware?  Be that as it may, I am very proud of what I have done in Congo, for I tried as best as I could to give opportunity to all shades of political and social opinion in Congo to express themselves on Radio and Television, something that had not existed since the re-election of Denis Sassou Nguesso in 2009. But I am also aware that, if the honest and God fearing Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa has not said anything, it is simply because she knows the truth. She knows very well that, General Jean Francois Ndenguet could not have acted without the approval of her uncle of a president of the Republic. She is had to make tough choices between her uncle and an ordinary journalist. She chose her uncle and family.

Whatever the case, I still have respect for Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa. I also know that, she is a good God fearing  Christian woman who is different from the rest of the Nguesso ruling family with the only exceptions being the her late cousin, Edith Lucie Bongo Ondimba, Maurice Nguesso, her father and Edgard Nguesso, her cousin. Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa has three things that she admires and loves best. She likes and loves her parents, especially her father, Maurice Nguesso and her uncle, Denis Sassou Nguesso. She also loves her family and children and loves her husband, Mr Jean De Dieu Kourissa MP. But it was in Paris, France that, Mrs. Kourissa decided to rename the Fanion Media Group into MNCOM. MNCOM stood for Maurice Nguesso Communications. She told me that, she was inspired by the American businessman by name Donald Trump whose name is attached to almost all what he does. However, while there is no problem with Donald Trump’s name in the USA, it is not the same with Maurice Nguesso. Mrs. Lydie Kourissa told me that, she wanted her father’s name to be attached to the transformation and name change of the Fanion media, which she was preparing to rename as MNCOM.

But she quickly discovered that, Nguesso, their family name was not popular in Congo. Hence she decided to rename MNCOM Media Group not as Maurice Nguesso Communications, but as Media Numerique Communications and it was incorporated in 2009. All these were being done while Maurice Nguesso was still sick and when he (Maurice Nguesso) recovered, he (Maurice Nguesso) decided to think bigger than plans of his daughter, Lydie Hortense Kourissa.  Maurice Nguesso decided that, besides the Radio, Television and newspaper components of his group, he decided to add a modern printing press called Impremerie Ayessa. Ayessa is the name of the mother of Maurice Nguesso. Furthermore, Maurice Nguesso decided also to add a digital television or terrestrial television with a bouquet of 33 foreign and two national television stations. In fact, he became also a distributor of Television channels, mostly foreign. His bouquet of digital television was called Mosaiq TV. This distributing or pay per view television station, called Mosaiq TV became a local rival of the French multinational doing the same business, called Canal Plus. Maurice Nguesso was the first before the government to introduce terrestrial television broadcasting in Congo.


The media group MNCOM was therefore made up of MNTV/Radio, Le Fanion daily, Mosaiq TV and Impremerie Ayessa. At the head of this group was Mrs. Lydie Hortense Kourissa. But until Mr Florent Koumba, the accountant from Gabon, was employed in 2011, MNCOM had no business plan. One thing with most investments or companies created by Maurice Nguesso is that, there are a lot of expectations than reality. Because of Maurice Nguesso’s almost childish enthusiasms and his inferiority complexes of French whites and also people who have some sophistry in the way they speak, he is most often than not hoodwinked by those French whites and even blacks who come to get their money than deliver to what they were paid for. That is Maurice Nguesso’s sin. However, he knows how to have confident in any person whose expertise is proven and interferes very little, once he has delegated.  

Monday, December 21, 2015

MNCOM Media Group: the ambition of a Congolese idealist


Officially, it is the name of a privately owned Media group abbreviated MNCOM and it was founded in 2009. She is on paper and also in the ambition and hope of it owner, Maurice Nguesso, Congo’s largest privately owned media group. It is the example of how creative and imaginative, the elder brother of President Denis Sassou Nguesso is. But on the sad or wrong side of the coin, it is the grave yard of all the professional and managerial good will. MNCOM also shows how open and conciliatory Maurice Nguesso is. Maurice Nguesso doesn’t only love his younger brother, President Denis Sassou Nguesso. He also loves Congo, Africa and above all, he loves real democracy, where there is real freedom of speech, real free and faire elections and real the defense and protection of human rights. Maurice Nguesso is the exact opposite of his younger brother of a president and all the opportunists and brutes around him.  And because Maurice Nguesso understands many things, especially Congolese and love democracy and a meritorious country, hence he has been sidelined by the extremist fringes that have taken his younger brother of a president hostage.

If for one single instant President Denis Sassou Nguesso could give an ear to the advice of his elder brother, there are some monumental errors that, he is committing today, that he won’t have. Sadly, President Denis Sassou Nguesso is surrounded by a group of people whose only ambition is to stay in power not for the good of the people but for their own and their friends and family.  As far as MNCOM is concern, It only rival is also the officially private media group called or known as Agence d’information de l’afrique Centrale abbreviated as ADIAC Group , the publishers of the country’s only daily called Les Depeches de Brazzaville, headed by a French journalist by name Jean Claude Pigasse. As in everything Congolese, there is another version about MNCOM. MNCOM was built on the ashes of an old project, which was initiated by one of the many Maurice Nguesso boys by named late Simon Zibe assisted by George Eboue. Both are former journalists who have worked with the state owned Congolese National Radio and Television Corporation abbreviated in French as CNRTV. MNCOM was first called Radio & Television Fanion, with its first station created in the village of Edou, which is the birthplace and ancestral home to the Nguessos.


Edou is a sparsely populated village located some 4 km from the town of Oyo and Oyo is also the name of  the same district that has been transformed into hybrid modern and archaic town,  since President Denis Sassou Nguesso came to power for the second time in 1997. Oyo might soon become Congo’s political and administrative capital should president Denis Sassou Nguesso remains in power beyond 2016. Anyway, that is his pet project. For according with a person that the president confided in him, Brazzaville is too hostile to him and his family, hence he wants the capital of Congo to be relocated to his village, in the same way as the former Ivorian President Late Houphouet Boigny did.  While waiting for that, to happen, Brazzaville is still the capital of Congo. Besides the Radio and Television, the Fanion media Group was also the publisher of a weekly called Le Fanion, that eventually became the second daily in the country after Les Depeches De Brazzaville. 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Anani Rabier Bindji’s own African reality is a travesty

However, one name comes up regularly as the assassin of Marien Ngouabi. It is the name of Denis Sassou Nguesso. How true is the accusation? Why doesn’t Denis Sassou Nguesso absolve himself in a book as he does best, when attempting to market an idea? Why does he want to shoulder such as a responsibility and a responsibility that might live on long after him to hunt his family?  I am personally left in a kind of wilderness. I can’t accuse him for the information gathered on the death of Marien Ngouabi is fraught with lies, inaccuracies, vengeance and outright refusal to cooperate. Anyway, from what I have heard from Anani Rabier Bindji, I am confused. He certainly might hold the secret or the missing link to the death of Marien Ngouabi and also all those who are connected with the death of Marien Ngouabi or who took part. But, the problems with Anani Rabier Bindji are double. He is caught between speaking the truth and also preserving what he calls African reality. But the question that I asked him and that he refused to answer was this: does African reality imply telling or hiding the truth? Anani Rabier Bindji’s own African reality is a travesty, as most intellectuals have done before him or a currently doing.


For Anani Rabier Bindji thinks that, Marien Ngouabi never really knew what he wanted, which might means in my interpretations that, his (Marien Ngouabi) disappearance was a kind of salvation to many. But it doesn’t mean that, he supported his assassination.  Anani Rabier Bindji is also ambiguous. On one hand, he told me Denis Sassou Nguesso is an assassin and on the other, he wants to help Denis Sassou Nguesso in his plans to change the constitution, a project that will make him elongate his stay at the head of Congo and also extend the secret on the cause of the death Marien Ngouabi. These kinds of ambiguity and retention of information regarding the death of Marien Ngouabi that has made me to be reticent and also stop from ruling as many in Congo, who claim that, Denis Sassou Nguesso is the assassin of Marien Ngouabi. It doesn’t in anyway mean that, I am absolving Denis Sassou Nguesso, but I am also not going to accuse him either.  One thing is certain, one day, the truth shall be known and it will help in the national reconciliation of Congo and put her back on the path of glory. In 2009 when I was visiting Congo as a reporter, Chryst Bonaventure Engobo(retired)  was the Director of Presidential Protocol.

Currently, he is the deputy secretary general of the National Security Council of Congo. He has replaced the renege Colonel Marcel Nstourou.  Colonel Chryst Bonaventure Engobo (retired) is quiet and elegant man and also above all intelligent for an average Congolese military officer or at least those that I know. He is a very humble and effaced man and not puffed up with pride or show and tell and brutes of the caliber of General Jean Francois Ndenguet. He is a loyal servant of President Denis Sassou Nguesso and also very patriotic. However, he has a certain admiration for communism especially the Cuban government. He is also a ma of principle who above all respects his words. One thing that I have noticed with this lover of Congolese music especially that of neighboring Kinshasa or the Democratic Republic of Congo is that, he is taciturn and seldom speaks about politics. He is nonetheless accused r considered by people of his hometown of Owando and also some southern Congolese as being a stooge of President Denis Sassou Nguesso.


Colonel Chryst Bonaventure Engobo is also accused of being so loyal to Denis Sassou Nguesso to the point of causing or sparking the 1997 civil war that ended the regime of Congo’s only post independence democratic elected president, Professor Pascal Lissouba. However on this point just as in the case of the assassination of Marien Ngouabi, there are two schools of thought. The first are of the opinion that, Colonel Chryst Bonaventure Engobo is responsible for the 1997 brief but violent Congolese civil war, while a second school of thought is of the opinion that, it was late Colonel Aboya who was responsible. But whoever was responsible is not the subject, but according to Toussaint Mavougou, Colonel Chryst Bonaventure Engobo is as secretive as a feline. But, I must note that, he is a good man who also admires late Marien Ngouabi, but seldom speaks about him in mythical terms as does others from Owando and its surrounding villages. He has chosen his camp, even though, some say at the detriment or at the expense of his own. To his credit, he is the one who really introduced me into Congo and also made me to love that wonderful country.

Monday, December 14, 2015

The legacy of Marien Ngouabi, ignored the Congolese Government

Even though, I have some doubts about Anani Bindji Rabier’s tales, the simple fact that he has some names that are not commonly known in the Marien Ngouabi assassination, provides some relative credibility to his claims and writings. But, his book, when published, may provide the missing link.  The only questions that I have always asked are these: why is it that, President Denis Sassou Nguesso seldom lays a wreath on the tomb of Marien Ngouabi, every March 18th, the day when Marien Ngouabi was killed?  Why has the Marien Ngouabi memorial in Brazzaville been abandoned or neglected, whereas that of Pierre Savorgnon de Brazza is given presidential guidance and sponsorship? Why is his (Marien Ngouabi) memorial not visited by foreign dignitaries visiting Congo, as it is the case when foreign dignitaries are visiting Angola, Russia, China, Turkey, South Sudan and now Venezuela? In the latter mentioned countries, it is an obligation or a diplomatic ritual for all foreign dignitaries to visit the mausoleum or memorial of Augustino Neto, Vladimir Lenin, Mao Zedong, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, John Garang Demabior and Hugo Chavez, in order to lay a wreath in honor of the aforementioned countries national heroes.

However, in Congo it is the reverse, Marien Ngouabi is ignored in  Congo or by the presidential protocol. It is only on March 18th that, the ruling PCT party remembers the man who gave them political and financial power.  Those unanswered questions are also perhaps the reasons why the claim that or the affirmations that, Denis Sassou Nguesso is the assassin of Marien Ngouabi.  True or false, Denis Sassou Nguesso’s attitude is the fodder behind those unsubstantiated claims.  For it is beyond comprehension why Denis Sassou Nguesso is not rendering due respect to the man who made him to become what he is today.  Is Denis Sassou Nguesso having a kind of guilty conscience, hence he can’t visit the tomb or Memorial of Marien Ngouabi? That is questions, which, only President Denis Sassou Nguesso can give an answer to. Having stayed in Congo and socialized with those governing the country, I have come to the conclusion that, Marien Ngouabi had several enemies within and without. It is as though, many people were happy with his death. It may partly explain the reason why, since his death, no one has come forward with convincing evidence to expose the one or the ones who contributed in the death of Marien Ngouabi.


Just as it is difficult to know the truth on the death of Marien Ngouabi, so also, it is difficult to work in Congo as a journalist and also try to carry out investigative reports.  Congolese officials think that, journalists are propagandists and they seldom entertain contradictions. The country is a dormant volcano that can enter into activity at all time. The grand question is this: who killed Marien Ngouabi? No one can really tell in Congo. Are the French, the Cubans, the Soviets or an internal cabal the cause of the death of Marien Ngouabi? That is the best kept Congolese secret, which, the one who will be able to unravel, will also unravel the secret of Congolese contemporary politics. But it is certainly not going to be easy, for Congolese elite and those governing who are professional liars do know the real cause of Marien Ngouabi death, but do not want to tell the truth. These elite have transmitted their lie telling and manipulative skills to most Congolese and which further compounds things.