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DRC court sentences ex-EC chair for 'undermining state security'

Pastor Daniel Ngoy Mulunda, former president of the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI).   -  
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Joseph Kabila

Pastor Daniel Ngoy Mulunda was on Wednesday sentenced to three years in prison for undermining state security, a human rights organization in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Association of Access to Justice (ACAJ) has said.

Mulunda is a relative of ex- Congolese leader Joseph Kabila. The former served as president of the electoral commission early 2010 under Kabila.

His charges also included incitement to tribal hatred and spreading false rumors. Mulunda’s conviction is a fresh blow against the entourage of the ex-president Kabila.

His defence lawyer, Jean Mbuyu has denounced the sentence. ‘’The judgement against our client was delivered at night by the court in the absence of the defendant and his lawyers’’, he said.

The Congolese National Assembly on Wednesday brought down the Prime Minister close to Kabila by passing a motion of censure against his government.

On December 6 last year, President Félix Tshisekedi put an end to the ruling coalition that he formed with his predecessor since his inauguration in January 2019.

On Thursday, international rights group, Human Rights Watch, denounced the hardening of the Congolese President Félix Tshisekedi, with an increase in repression against the media and pro-democracy activists in his two years in power.

Between January and July 2020, the group said it documented 39 cases of threats, harassment, arbitrary arrests and detentions related to media freedom and peaceful protests. It also said since July it had documented an additional 65 cases.