Monday, February 22, 2016

Mrs. Arlette Soudan-Nonault: Sassou Nguesso's weapon of mass destabilisation (Profile)

She is a former journalist and former special adviser to Pierre Ngolo MP, secretary general of the ruling Congolese Workers Party abbreviated in French as PCT. In her early 50s and married to a French journalist by name Francois Soudan, Arlette Soudan-Nonault, is one of the rare women and member of the ruling party who is capable to express herself intelligently, honestly and this, without fear. She is not a hypocrite. She is real. But too modern for a party and system that has medieval tribal practices. She is also technologically savvy within a movement that doesn’t know where they (PCT) stand for, ideologically. The ruling PCT, that, she is a member, is a political movement that, is more pruned to corruption than working for the common man. Hence, it has a problem not only of image, but also of credibility amongst the population. This is so because, most members of the ruling party are worn-out and corrupt old men, who do not want to create chance for internal renewal. The PCT of Mrs. Soudan-Nonault is out of touch with reality.

It is a political party, for old men, who have taken their old chairman (Denis Sassou Nguesso) hostage. It is also a party that, detest the presence of independent women: young or old within their rank. Arlette Soudan-Nonault seems to be an exception to the rule within the ruling party, even though there are some women like her within the ruling party. She is an exception in that, she is bold and ready to take out her sword from its quiver to challenge the established order.  She is honest to a point that, within the ruling party and within the ruling Nguesso family that she is part of, she is not appreciated by some members, because of her outspokenness. Mindful that, her outspokenness has marginalized her within the hierarchy of the PCT, she has distant herself from the ruling party and has created a think tank called Athena. The think tank, she says, has been created to make independent and objective contributions directly to the President of the Republic, for she is of the opinion that, the president of the Republic (Denis Sassou Nguesso) is poorly advised by his official advisers within the government and also within the ruling PCT party.  

Asked why such a brilliant young woman and a former journalist with western education would support such nepotism inclined, violent and corrupt regime?  Her answer is metaphorical and euphemistic. I am for evolution and not revolution.  She replies. And she adds: I will rather prefer to stand by Ali, than support the 40 thieves, who have been enriched by Ali and will throw the country into chaos, if given the opportunity prematurely. She concludes her metaphoric and euphemistic response justifying her fanatical support of President Denis Sassou Nguesso by saying this: the President is laying the foundation of democratic appeasement in the country and will leave power by 2021, a time when, the country is expected to have been exorcized of its demons of divisions and rancor. Arlette Soudan-Nonault, believes that, her contributions to the President, if taken into consideration, could help improved the  battered image of the president and also make him attractive in view of his plans to change the constitution and his re-elections.

She has little or no respect for most members of the opposition. The only member of the opposition that she respects is Nicephore Antoine Fylla de Saint Eudes, affectionately known as Nick. She claims that, Nicephore Antoine Fylla de Saint Eudes is different from the rest because he is not only respectful, but he has an excellent appraisal of the political reality of the country currently. As for the rest of the opposition, she refers to them as a band of rogues whose only ambitions are to throw the country into chaos. For she also thinks that, they have no other programme or agenda other than, hatred for the President. She also thinks that, most people around the president are in league with the opposition, thus fanning the embers to destabilize the President. In other words, President Denis Sassou Nguesso seems to be alone and is not sure or certain of his fate should he relinquishes power. Hence he wants to hang on until death takes him away. Her posture has made her not to have friends within the party and also within a section of the ruling family. Her only reliable friends are the President of the Republic and her husband.

Mrs. Soudan-Nonault, who owns one of the best private schools in Congo, called: institute Saint Francois D’Assise de Makabandilou, located in the north of Brazzaville, is in spite everything, a force to be counted on within the ruling PCT party, presently and also in the future. That is if, President Denis Sassou Nguesso stays onto power, as she firmly believes, he will and he decides to reward her for her zealotry. But the cruel Congolese political reality that seems to elude Mrs Arlette Soudan-Nonault is that, a bright and brilliant woman such as her, cannot blossom politically in a party like the PCT and in a system such as the one instituted in Congo and within the ruling party by Denis Sassou Nguesso a system that is characterized by mutual mistrust, cynicism, disloyalty, greed and treachery. Whether she likes it or not, she is a disposal material that would be used by her uncle of a President and dispensed off, whenever, the apparatchik of the ruling party decides to ignite, the ignition of their destructive steamroller against her. But she seems not to care and she is ready because of her principles, which is not known whether it is idealism or realism or both, to be the sacrificial lamb of her uncle.

The ruling Congolese Workers Party is a cynical  party populated by  macho old men who are not only corrupt but, who are more busy fighting for themselves and their family and do not even care about the improvement the lot of the country or even improve the image of the President who made them to become what they are today. The ruling party in Congo is a party of ingrates and that is where Mrs. Soudan-Nonault, thinks she can she change or improve things. Nonetheless, Mrs. Soudan-Nonault has the merit and the courage to fight and also defend and also attempt to sell a president who is synonymous to an expired product. This alone speaks volumes not only of her character, but also of her determination. Mrs. Soudan-Nonault is a fighter and a positive one, but she is in a wrong camp or wrong side of history. Some would conclude. But time they say, is the best and honest judge. The other woman that I have met and interviewed like Arlette Soudan-Nonault is Gilda Rosemonde Ngambo.

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