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“Cancelling DRC elections would be declaration of war”

Date: Jul 11, 2017

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)'s opposition group Le Rassemblement on Monday accused the Electoral Commission President of declaring war on the Congolese people by announcing that elections would probably not possible by the end of the year.

Reading a statement by opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi, the son of the late UDPS (Union for Democracy and Progress) opposition party leader Etienne Tshisekedi,  the Rassemblement's raporteur Baudouin Bwasa demanded elections be held before the end of the year.

The President of the DRC's electoral commission, Corneille Nangaa, told France's TV5Monde on Sunday that a vote to replace President Joseph Kabila will probably not be possible this year, violating a deal that let Kabila stay on past the end of his mandate.

Kabila's refusal to step down at the end of his second elected term in December sparked protests that killed dozens of people. Tshisekedi's statement said the opposition would call on July 22 for mass action against the decision during the final round of its conclave.

Under the accord struck on December 31 between Kabila's representatives and opposition leaders, Kabila, in power since 2001, is also barred from trying to change the constitution to stand for a third term. However, Kabila has said only the electoral commission can schedule the vote once it finishes enrolling millions of voters.



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