IT’S NICE TO KNOW that President of the Democratic Republic of Congo Laurent-Désiré Kabila, who was assassinated in Kinshasa in mid-January, was keen to develop his country’s rail network. How else can one interpret an item that appeared in British newspaper The Independent on January 22? The paper’s reporter, interviewing Kabila’s economics adviser Emile Mota, notes that Kabila was planning a meeting with President Chirac at the Franco-African summit on January 17. Mota told the reporter: ’France was in the DRC’s debt and I was going to discuss a project with the French to build a TGV from Kinshasa to Lubumbashi by 2003.’ Let’s hope Kabila’s successor is just as keen. n