Mutombo said he got word from the U.S. Department of Homeland
Security on Wednesday that his paperwork had been approved.
Mutombo, who was born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,
will be sworn in as an American citizen in Atlanta, where he lives
in the off-season.
"It's more joy and more happiness," he told Houston television
station KRIV. "My blood is still going to be Congoese. This is
where we are going to call home, so it's good to be an American."
The NBA star said he hopes becoming an American will help his
cause of building a hospital in his hometown of Kinshasa.
"I think it will open up the door more to the government
assistance in this country," he said.