AFRICA/DR CONGO - The Congolese opposition unites and calls for elections by November

Thursday, 16 June 2016 elections  

Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) - "Rassemblement" ("Union") is the name that the Congolese opposition gave itself at the end of the meeting convened in Genval (Belgium) by Etienne Tshisekedi, President of the Union pour la Démocratie et le Progrès Social (UDPS), and historical leader of the opposition to President Joseph Kabila (see Fides 08/06/2016). "To unite the opposition forces to bring to success the struggle of the Congolese people at the service of alternation and the rule of law", reads the text "of the act of commitment" signed by the members of the new political formation.
"The UDPS noticed that, alone, it cannot prevail over the Presidential Majority and, therefore, needs the contribution of other parties and platform of the opposition" says a note sent to Agenzia Fides by the Peace Network for Congo which explains the initiative undertaken by Tshisekedi.
"It is now technically impossible to organize presidential elections on 27 November, as the Electoral Commission had foreseen" the statement said. The Constitutional Court reiterated that, according to paragraph 2 of Article 70 of the Constitution, "at the end of his term, the President of the Republic shall remain until the newly-elected President takes office". "Rassemblement" "calls for" the organization of presidential elections before 19 December. The "Rassemblement" members refer to Resolution 2277 of the UN Security Council calling for "presidential and parliamentary elections by November 2016". The government in Kinshasa has, however, described the UN stance "irresponsible".
"The act of commitment" was also signed by "G7" a grouping of seven opposition parties that supports the presidential candidacy of former governor of Katanga, Moïse Katumbi, who was forced to leave the Democratic Republic of Congo, after being accused of having recruited mercenaries to destabilize the Country's political life (see Fides 31/05/2016). (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 16/06/2016)