News / Africa

UN Assists DRC in Organizing General Elections

United Nations Peacekeepers protect unarmed civilians in the Democratic Republic of Congo
United Nations Peacekeepers protect unarmed civilians in the Democratic Republic of Congo

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  • Clottey interview with Alexander Essome, spokesman for the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo [MONUSCO]

Peter Clottey

The spokesman for the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) says his group is assisting the Independent Electoral Commission (CEI) to organize this year’s general elections.

Alexander Essome says through its radio station, Radio Okapi, the U.N. has begun a sensitization campaign to educate Congolese, ahead of the presidential and legislative elections, scheduled for November 27.

He says the world body’s assistance program is all-encompassing.

“Logistically, we are assisting them to carry all the [voting] materials in the hubs and sub-hubs.  And later on, we will help them technically according to our mandate.  Our electoral division is actively involved in the entire process,” Essome said.

The U.N. spokesman says the Stabilization Mission will continue to help the electoral commission achieve what he calls a credible vote.

He says the U.N.-run Radio Okapi continues to address issues pertaining to voter registration and the need for popular participation in the entire electoral process.

Meanwhile, a two-day forum organized by MONUSCO ended Tuesday in the capital, Kinshasa. It aimed at ensuring a peaceful environment for this year’s elections. Participants included representatives of political parties, civil society groups, the media and security forces in the country.

“We don’t want people to be intimidated. We don’t want anything to take place but a fair and transparent election whenever it comes time for elections,” says Essome.

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