Opposition parties in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have vowed to hold demonstrations ahead of the next presidential elections.
Through a statement released by an alliance of opposition parties, they say they will mount pressure on President Joseph Kabila to step down once his term expires.
According to his opponents, Kabila is seeking to extend his term in office by postponing presidential elections set for November this year.
A new U.N. report highlights a worrying clampdown on opposition, media and civil society in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since the beginning of the year.
Moreover, the 44-year-old has been accused of trying to amend the country’s presidential term limits.
Under the current constitution, Kabila is not eligible to vie for presidency.
He has already run for two consecutive terms and ruled the country for the past 15 years following the assassination of his father Laurent Kabila.
Last year, at least 40 people died during protests over proposed amendments to the country’s electoral code.
Months later, the government said the presidential elections should be delayed by up to for years arguing that the country is ill prepared for elections.
According to a United Nations report, security forces have been accused of summary executions and death threats ahead of the polls.
“A new U.N. report highlights a worrying clampdown on opposition, media and civil society in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since the beginning of the year. It also stresses the need to guarantee political and civil rights ahead of key elections,” Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesman For UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said last month.
Critics argue that the current government has failed to bring stability in the country especially in the violence ridden Eastern region.
The November elections could be the first democratic transition in the war torn country.