’Amazed to see how life goes on’: Photographer André Percey Katombe Shares Glimpse of Post-War Congo

With Norwegian NGO Join Good Forces, photographer André Percy Moussa Didi Mbangama Katombe – who said to just call him André – travelled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo during late April to document life in a country recovering from more than a decade of war and strife.

“After a country has gone through a civil war, you kind of expect people to be down,” André said. “But to my shock, I was really amazed to see how life goes on and life has been going on.”

André is himself Congolese, but moved to South Africa as a young teenager in 1996, immediately before Congo’s descent into full civil war. He now resides in Norway. Here André talked about how he expected to return to a country beaten down by years of suffering, poverty and unrest, but to his surprise, he found something completely different – vividly illustrated in his photographs.

“For me, it speaks a lot about the determination of the people that they choose to be positive,” said André. “They choose to keep their self-pride and walk through their circumstances.”

Filmed by Ka Man Mak. Edited by Vilde Skorpen Wikan.

Vilde Skorpen Wikan

Freelance journalist focused on international affairs, technology and society.