Images of Joseph Kasavubu, who was the first president of the Congo (now Democratic Republic of Congo) from 1960 to 1965 died 24 March 1969. He assumed the office when the Congo became independent from Belgium on 30 June, 1960. Kasavubu was born in the village of Kuma-Dizi in the Mayombe district of the Lower Congo region. He was a member of the Bakongo ethnic group. Kasavubu did not know his father and lost his mother at the age of 4. He was raised by his older brother who sent him to a nearby Catholic mission where he was baptized in 1925. On 25 November, 1965, Army Chief of Staff Joseph Mobutu overthrew Kasavubu and created a military dictatorship that controlled the nation for the next three decades. Kasavubu retired to a farm in Mayombe where he died on 24 March, 1969.
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