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techkenyot.com March 26, 2019


No announcement yet on DRC election results

10 January 2019, 06:35 | Glen Norman

No announcement yet on DRC election results

A Congolese citizen casting his ballot using an electronic voting machine

Provisional results of the much-delayed Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election could be counted in "24 to 48 hours", a top electoral official said on Tuesday.

An AFP photographer said armed police were blocking the boulevard in front of the CENI headquarters.

Shadary was competing against two main opposition candidates, businessman Martin Fayulu and Felix Tshisekedi, the president of Congo's largest opposition party. The delay in announcing results has led some Congolese to suspect possible manipulation in favor of the ruling party.

"The two figures have an interest in meeting to prepare a peaceful and civilised transfer of power", said UDPS secretary general Jean-Marc Kabund.

"The delay in releasing the results of the elections can lead to suspicions and compromise peace and stability of the country", said a joint statement by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and Zambian counterpart Edgar Lungu.

However, Fayulu's supporters believe outgoing President Joseph Kabila plans to rig the vote in favour of his hand-picked candidate, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, or alternatively do a power-sharing deal with Félix Tshisekedi, head of the DRC's main opposition party.

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Security forces took up positions outside the offices of the DRC's election commission and elsewhere in the capital Kinshasa, amid fears that violence would mar the first electoral transfer of power in 59 years of independence.

He also told the Belgian newspaper Le Soir that Kabila could be honoured for ushering in a peaceful transition.

A CENI source and a diplomat said they expected results to be announced later on Wednesday.

But as the other key opposition candidate, Fayulu in his statement warned the electoral commission "against any attempt to disguise the truth of the polls".

Fayulu accused CENI of knowing the "real results", saying it had "deliberately abstained from making them public in violation of its own timetable for unacknowledged reasons".

Opposition candidates, the Catholic church and worldwide community have urged that the results reflect the will of the Congolese people.

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On Tuesday, Fayulu and six other presidential candidates issued a statement saying that the results "cannot be negotiated".

Congolese activist groups are urging people to "be ready to massively take to the streets" if the electoral commission does not publish presidential election results in accordance with "the truth of the ballot boxes".

It called on CENI "to publish the election results in keeping with truth and justice".

Congo's powerful Catholic Church has said it found a clear victor from data compiled by its 40,000 observers deployed to all polling stations. But one Congolese election observer group, Symocel, on Tuesday reported "major irregularities" including the disappearance of envelopes containing results from almost 120 polling stations in Kinshasa, an opposition stronghold.

More than one million people were kept from voting on election day because of an Ebola outbreak and militia violence in opposition strongholds, mainly in DRC's east.

Fayulu is backed by former Katanga governor Moise Katumbi, considered a "Judas" by Kabila, and ex-warlord and former vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba.

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