News / Africa

Electoral Commission Says DR Congo '99% Ready' For Election

People walk under a giant poster showing Democratic Republic of the Congo 's President and candidate for a second term Joseph Kabila, in Kinshasa, November 7, 2011.
People walk under a giant poster showing Democratic Republic of the Congo 's President and candidate for a second term Joseph Kabila, in Kinshasa, November 7, 2011.

Electoral officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo say the country is 99 percent ready for Monday's presidential and legislative vote.  The leading opposition candidate on Sunday backed off plans to hold a rally in violation of a ban on political activity ahead of the vote.

Electoral commission president Daniel Ngoy-Mulunda says poll workers at more than 63,000 polling stations stand ready to help voters advance Congolese democracy.

On Monday, Ngoy-Mulunda says, the electoral commission invites the Congolese people to the polls in peace, serenity, and mutual respect. He is calling on all citizens to exercise their constitutional right to choose a president and members of the national assembly.

Despite concerns about delays in the distribution of electoral materials in a country the size of Western Europe, this vote will go ahead as scheduled.

Speaking to reporters Sunday evening, Ngoy-Mulunda said 99 percent of the country is ready for the vote, and by Monday morning he hopes it will be 100 percent.

Once vote counting is complete, each party representative in each polling station will receive a copy of the vote totals before that document is scanned and sent electronically to electoral commission headquarters in Kinshasa to help prevent fraud.

There are more than 18,000 candidates for 500 seats in the national assembly. Ten men are running against incumbent president Joseph Kabila. And some are already claiming electoral fraud. Opposition candidate Vital Kamerhe showed reporters what he said were ballot papers already marked for President Kabila.

Ngoy-Mulunda says there is no evidence of fraud concerning the South-African-printed ballots. “We have called the government of South Africa to make an investigation. The government made the investigation. Today the ambassador announced, among other ambassadors, that that one is not true. Our papers we have some security features. The investigation done by the South African government is also their reputation. Because even myself, CENI president, I don't have a single ballot," he said.

The main opposition presidential candidate in this vote, Etienne Tshisekedi, backed off plans for a Sunday rally that would have violated a ban on electioneering on the so-called day of reflection before the vote.

He was blocked by riot police at Kinshasa's airport for more than ten hours Saturday and was unable to meet with supporters.

Tshisekedi told reporters early Sunday that he was going ahead with his rally despite the ban. But the long-time opposition leader appears to have been convinced to back off that plan by advisers who say they fear for his safety.

Small groups of riot police took up positions Sunday between Tshisekedi headquarters and the stadium where he announced the rally would be held. There were no large crowds of Tshisekedi supporters as there had been Saturday.

Polls open Monday at 6 am local time. Final results are expected December 5, one day before President Kabila's current mandate expires.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid