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DRC: UN chief urges parties to participate in national dialogue

DRC: UN chief urges parties to participate in national dialogue

Democratic Republic Of Congo

The Secretary General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon has urged political groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to join the Edem Kodjo-led national dialogue that kicked off on September 1.

According to Ki-moon, he was convinced that only an inclusive political dialogue will pave the way for peaceful and credible elections, in accordance with resolution 2277 of the Security Council (2016).

“The Secretary-General urges the political groups that have not yet joined the process of dialogue to play a constructive role in contributing to the holding of credible elections in a timely manner,” his spokesperson said in a press statement.

“It encourages the Government to continue confidence-building measures and enforce the fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution, in order to create an atmosphere for a credible dialogue,” he added.

Ban Ki-moon however urged all parties to refrain from any action that could exacerbate tensions or lead to violence.

#RDC Un dialogue national inclusif ouvrira la voie à des élections pacifiques et crédibles https://t.co/0KTj9VPuS5 pic.twitter.com/yYDPDlJIA4

— MONUSCO (@MONUSCO) September 6, 2016

The need for a dialogue was called by President Joseph Kabil whose constitutional second term comes to an end in December. A court has ruled that he can stay in power till the next elections are held.

The country’s electoral body recently stated that elections were not feasible within this year and that a credible register for polls could be ready by middle of 2017. Even with that, opposition members still insist that Kabila should step down at the end of his term.

The dialogue has been set into motion but according to political watchers it could not prove as effective with major players like Etienne Tshisekedi and Moise Katumbi opting out. The Lucha party also announced pulling out of the dialogue just when it was about to start.

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