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Congo's presidential candidate summoned by security forces

Congo's presidential candidate summoned by security forces

Republic of the Congo

The Republic of Congo’s presidential rival General Jean-Marie Mokoko, a candidate in the upcoming March 20 elections was on Thursday summoned by security forces.

“The General has just received a summons from the General Directorate of Territorial Surveillance (S&T Branch), asking him to appear tomorrow at 10am,” said Anatole Limbongo Ngoka, president of Mokoko’s support committee.

Limbongo said the document did not elaborate on why Mokoko had been summoned. He says he will instead send his lawyer.

AFP news agency says a source at the S&T Branch could not be reached to confirm the authenticity of the summons.

Until early February, General Mokoko, former Chief of Staff of the Congolese armed forces was a Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AU) in Central Africa and adviser to Congo’s president Sassou Nguesso on security issues.

He announced his candidacy for the presidency shortly before his return to the capital Brazzaville on February 9.

Several days ago, Mokoko said he was “stoned “ by police officers at the airport and forced to leave in a hurry. The police have since denied the accusations.

On February 13, a video implicating him in an apparent coup attempt was circulated on the internet.

The video, dating back to the year 2000, shows a discussion between a man whose face cannot be seen but said to belong DGSE foreign intelligence service of France and General Mokoko, discussing a plan to overthrow the president.

Mokoko is reportedly further heard saying he resigned as chief of staff “because it was not possible to work with the president (Pascal) Lissouba,” winner of the 1992 elections, who he accused of wanting to use the army to violate the Constitution.

His campaign team issued a statement saying that this video was fabricated.

Ten candidates are running for the presidential seat. President Nguesso, who has been in power for 32 years will run for another term after a new constitution adopted in October 2015 permitted him to do so.

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