Minority stories II: The history and future of a Belgo-Congolese

A summary of the  interview with Augistin Nkenda by Enja (Norway), Victoria (Switzerland) and Zlatina (Bulgaria):

The meeting with Nkenda was a meeting with a passionate man who has managed to keep his values and traditions, but at the same time integrate in the Belgian society. We met him in his own food store “General and exotic food store”, where he welcomed us with a friendly and open-minded attitude. In the introduction of the interview he told us about Congo and his former life there. Then he moved on to the subject of which he is really engaged in, African youth groups – he is working on a doctorate concerning the topic. During his work with his doctorate he has achieved more knowledge about the challenges related to minorities and the integration process. His focus point is therefore to find the reasons in order to discover the right solutions.  Apart from that he talked a lot about his political engagement and his plans for the future – both in Congo and in Brussels. Nkenda is actually a candidate for the next parliamentary elections in Congo in 2012. He is a highly educated man, but it is an important key point for him to have contact with all sorts of people. Nkenda underlined that it is possible for him to get to know people with different origins and cultural heritage because of his work in the store.

We were impressed by his passionate spirit and his belief in the future and in the young generation. He had a lot of interesting thoughts upon life and world politics. Though he had a though start with a lot of difficulties to get legal permission to stay in the country, he has managed to reach his goals. Nkenda is now determined that he will stay in Brussels. To Augistin Nkenda, Brussels is now his life – this is the place where he has his family, friends and business.

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