The CENI is pushing hard to publish its figures while polling stations are still open.
D3 for the general elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In several places in the country, from Greater Katanga to Kwango, thousands of voters still flocked to the polling stations this Friday, December 22 for a vote which, according to article 52 of the electoral law, was to be held from 6 a.m. at 5 p.m. on a single day, December 20.
”It’s total rubbish, it’s a total bankruptcy,” explains a supporter of Martin Fayulu who, like his party president, is quickly demanding new elections with a new team at the head of the CENI. This Friday, Hervé Diakiese, the spokesperson for Moïse Katumbi’s Ensemble pour la République party, for the first time opened the door to the organization of a new election. . “We won in the majority of constituencies but even if victory is ours, we are not opposed to canceling the elections to redo them correctly because we do not want to benefit from a questionable fruit. What happened is not acceptable”.
”Tshisekedi is no longer president”
On the other end of the line, Corneille Nangaa, the president of the Ceni in 2018, drinks whey. This chaos in the organization of the vote by Denis Kadima fuels his politico-military movement Alliance Fleuve Congo (AFC) which he launched a little over a week ago from Nairobi. The objective of this movement is to block the path to a new fraudulent mandate from Félix Tshisekedi. “In 2018, the organization of the vote was flawless; he explains, not without adding… “even if the results that were announced did not correspond to reality”.
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Corneille Nangaa, who announces he is in Dubai, continues: “Frankly, these are not elections. There is nothing credible about this process. For the Congo River Alliance, Tshisekedi is no longer president and we will treat him as such”. The man refusesfor the moment” to say more.
”It is obvious that this parody of an election serves the interests of all opponents, especially the most radical ones. notes a diplomat who is not keen on the recent exit of the alternate permanent representative of the United States to the United Nations, Robert Wood, who declared: “We know that democracy does not stop at the ballot box. In fact, it’s what happens next that really matters…” A statement which did not go unnoticed in the DRC and which completely overshadowed the exit of a spokesperson for the State Department who, the day before, recalled: “The United States renews its call for free and fair elections, conducted transparently and within the framework of an inclusive electoral process. (…) We will not hesitate to point out the irregularities which, in our opinion, undermine the democratic process and the will of the Congolese people.”
. “Mr. Wood must be overworked by the debates at the United Nations on the war in the Middle East to dare such a provocation against the Congolese people. explains a diplomat in Kinshasa. “In the Congolese opposition, this declaration is analyzed as support for Tshisekedi”.
A duty of non-indifference
Faced with this cynical position, some highlight the duty of “non-indifference”. This concept is notably defended by certain diplomats in an attempt to respond to the lack of reaction from an international community which tends to cower behind the argument of the trauma caused by repeated coups d’état in Africa and which would justify abstain from anything that could appear as interference in African policies.
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“We should therefore allow potential dictators to establish themselves and use all the means of the State to combat any opposition, however democratic it may be. This makes no sense and is even counterproductive. In fact, we thus cut ourselves off from the people who suffer and who feel abandoned. This creates the basis for extremist speeches”warns another diplomat who has made this duty of non-indifference his hobby horse.
The race for numbers
On the sidelines of this debate, under the marquee of the Ceni HQ, the Bosolo room (truth in Lingala) in the center of Kinshasa, since early Thursday afternoon the upcoming broadcast of the first provisional results has been announced, history of animate the beautiful large electronic board that adorns the place.
”On Thursday, we were guaranteed the publication of the first provisional results by 2 p.m., explains an observer who was surprised by this announcement, while voters were still in line in front of polling stations. Information that had escaped the CENI agents present in the room who were not even aware that the vote was still in progress in offices located a few hundred meters away, in the same Kinshasa commune.
Same observation this Friday where these same agents were unaware that thousands of Congolese were still authorized to vote. Denis Kadima’s Electoral Commission seemed overwhelmed by the orthodoxy of numerous polling station heads who were unable to welcome voters on December 20 and who heard the president of their institution explain that every Congolese had the right to vote. A speech taken literally which led to the opening of numerous offices this Friday. “In fact, it is the polling stations that have become independent,” explains our observer with a touch of irony. One of these colleagues appears worried. “Certain figures that we hear circulating here could set fire to the powder.”