The Democratic Republic of Congo’s Justice Minister Celestin Tunda resigned his position on Saturday following a dispute with the president over proposed laws that would give politicians more control over criminal prosecutions.
In a televised statement, Tunda did not give a reason for his resignation. He had been briefly arrested late last month after their disagreement got to a head. Tunda has consistently opposed changes in the laws by the sitting government citing illegality.
The controversial reforms include proposals to define the powers of judges, which critics said is a ploy to muzzle the judiciary.
They were put forward by the Common Front for Congo, a coalition close to Kabila, who remains a behind-the-scenes force in national politics.
“There is no time in the government here in the Congo that we have discussed observations on proposed laws. The bills are the prerogative of the MPs, how could we discuss them in the government?” these are comments attributable to the ex minister.
“One must have the approval of the National Assembly before prosecuting a member of the government. What we have seen today is the birth of dictatorship.”