The Nexus between Artisanal Mining and the Recruitment, Reintegration and Re-recruitment of Combatants in the Kivus, Democratic Republic of the Congo

  • Charles Magha-A-Ngimba Gimba

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


    This thesis examines the artisanal mining-combatant-recruitment nexus in war torn zones. With a case study of the Kivus in the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC), which has experienced one of the world’s worst blood-shedding over the last two decades, the study uses a constructivist Grounded Theory approach to research in terms of both data collection and analysis. It focuses on the existing body of knowledge on conflict analyses with a particular reference to the absurdity of abundance theory, which singles out the endowment of natural resources and weak governance as the main fuelling-factors of the conflict in the DRC. Data collection was carried out using diverse methods including literature reviews, interviews and focus groups. In particular, the study aims to explore how the demilitarisation of the mining zones could contribute to enhancement of the Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) of ex-combatants and promote social cohesion, sustainable peace and security in the eastern DRC.

    The analysis of the conflicts in the DRC and the acquaintance of belligerents with artisanal mining revealed the convoluted multi-layered nature of the conflicts in the country and their intricate causalities. The examination of the demilitarisation of the mining zones pertinent to the nexus between artisanal mining and the recruitment, reintegration and re-recruitment of combatants in the Kivus identified a few prerequisites in order to sever the artisanal mining-combatant-recruitment relationship that largely swivel around “bottom-up solutions”.

    The research contributes to knowledge in three broad areas; firstly, it contributes to ongoing academic debates on conflict analyses, the political economy of armed conflicts vis-à-vis mining sector as well ast he mining sector and DDR of combatants in the DRC. Secondly, it offers empirical analysis and data on the combatants’ recruitment and DDR process and the artisanal mining sector with regards to state failure and protracted armed conflict in the DRC. Finally, it underlines the need to re-evaluate “the concept of community-based approach”, a key approach to improving peacebuilding and post-conflict recovery in he eastern DRC.
    Date of Award2014
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Coventry University
    SupervisorAlpaslan Ozerdem (Supervisor) & Alan Hunter (Supervisor)

    Cite this