Roots in the Congo

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Author: Marc, Spain

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Editor: Lee Ann

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A short introduction

The intriguing autobiographic story of a colonial child, born in the former Belgian Congo, who rediscovers the new Zaire and later DR Congo as an adult. He went through all the major events of the country, and became close to a variety of people in power. After going through some turbulent events in life, he became the managing director of a multinational company.

The author takes the reader through some historical facts and real life events in different periods in time. From the Kasavubu era to the rise of Mobutu and later Kabila father and son. He witnessed the different, often violent, regime changes and describes the effects on people and business.

He takes you into his personal life and shares successes and failures which taught him some important lessons in life.

Author: Marc

Marc Gielissen was born in Leopoldville in 1957 (the current Kinshasa) , son of a Danish mother and Belgian father. He has an adventurous spirit; a former racing car driver, team owner, aviator, sailor and business man. He has an MBA from the University of Liverpool. Marc had businesses in the DR Congo and Belgium and worked for several multinational corporations as Managing Director. Although his experience was mostly acquired in Central, South and West Africa, he also worked and lived for a short period in Asia with a base in Hanoi (Vietnam). He currently lives on his boat "Atlantis". He witnessed all the important changes which would lead to the current Democratic Republic of the Congo; from the former Belgian Congo to the independence day, the Mobutu regime, his fall and the rise of Laurent Kabila, his assassination, the replacement by his son Joseph Kabila and the violent confrontation between the latter and former Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba in the city centre of Kinshasa. Marc was also involved in providing the telecommunication centre used during the first democratic elections in the DR Congo.

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