DR Congo opposition leader, Felix Tshisekedi has described the delay of the presidential election until 2019 by the country’s electoral commission as a declaration of war on the Congolese people.
Tshisekedi’s comments came as opposition supporters gathered outside the headquarters of the country’‘s opposition coalition group, known as the “Gathering”.
“It is with indignation that I learnt of the irresponsible statements of Corneille Nangaa who, on October 11, before the members of civil society and of political parties, pushed the holding of elections that were meant to be held on December 31st 2017, as per the New Year agreement, instead of 2019. In the face of yet another abuse of authority, Joseph Kabila and Nangaa have declared war on the Congolese people and therefore have disqualified themselves.” Felix Tshisekedi said
The polls were originally slated for November 2016, but Congo’s electoral commission on Tuesday October 10 said it would need at least 504 days to organise the poll once voters registration is completed
The postponement of the elections by the electoral commission would ruin an agreement between President Joseph Kabila’s representatives and his opponents that the election would take place before the end 2017.
Dozens of people died last year in protests against Kabila’s refusal to step down at the end of his term. Parts of the country are in the hands of insurgents who say they will not stop fighting while he remains in power.
Kabila, who came to power in 2001 after the assassination of his father, Laurent Kabila says the election delays are due to difficulties in registering millions of voters and mobilising funds.