Friday, January 11, 2019

Statements on Congo's Elections

SADC congratulates President-Elect of DRCongo, Mr Felix Tshisekedi
Click here to read!

The African Union Commission takes note of the decision of the Constitutional Court of the DRC
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Congo's Constitutional Court Proclaims Felix Tshisekedi President
Click here to read!

African Union Calls on Congo to Suspend Proclamation of Final Results
Click here to read!

The Double Troika Summit (Summit) of the Heads of State and Government of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) was held in Addis Ababa, in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia on 17th January 2019.
Click here to read (PDF)!

URGENT - SADC urges all-inclusive government in DRC
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U.S. Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Pushes State Department to Address Concerns About DRC Elections
Click here to read!

National Episcopal Conference of Congo (CENCO)
Click here to read!

African Union Commission
Click here to read!

United Nations
Click here to read!

Southern African Development Community
Click here to read!

South Africa, President Cyril Ramaphosa
Click here to read!

Economic Freedom Fighters
Click here to read!

International Conference on the Great Lakes Region
Click here to read!

European Union
Click here to read!

France
Click here to read!

Canada
Click here to read!

United States, State Department

Click here to read!

United States Congress, House Foreign Affairs
Click here to read!

US Representative, Karen Bass
Click here to read!




Friday, January 04, 2019

The Fight To End Tyrannical Regimes in Congo Persists

January 4th is a seminal day in Congo’s history, which serves as a national holiday. On January 4, 1959, ordinary Congolese stood in defiance of Belgian colonialism demanding independence. Congolese in Kinshasa unleashed a spontaneous uprising out of frustration with the repressive Belgian colonial regime. In his critically acclaimed work "Congo: From Leopold to Kabila," Dr Georges Nzongola Ntalaja said the march on January 4, 1959 "sounded the death knell of Belgian Colonialism in the Congo." The unifying chant of the marchers was "Indépendance Immediate" or "Independence Now" in English. The uprising represented the radicalization of the struggle for independence. It frightened not only the Belgian authorities but also the Congolese elites know as évolués.

Nine days later on January 13, 1959 both the King of Belgium and the Belgium government announced that in due time Belgium would grant Congo full independence. In the conscience of the nation, the day represents the historic point of departure for the independence of the Congo from Belgian colonialism.

The courageous stance by that generation of Congolese served as a key catalyst for Congo’s independence in 1960. Since the 1960s Congolese have celebrated and commemorated that generation’s actions and named the day “la journée des martyrs de l’indépendance,” or in English, independence Martyrs Day. Without a doubt, Congolese of that era made enormous sacrifices for freedom and independence.

Congolese continue to make tremendous sacrifice for total independence and liberation from tyranny. The youth have been at the forefront of this fight. During the past few years, Congolese youth have paid the dearest price in confronting the tyrannical regime of president Joseph Kabila. Throughout 2018, Congolese youth rose up to demand democracy and justice in the Congo. Unfortunately, several of them paid the ultimate price for demanding change under the repressive regime of Joseph Kabila. Figures such as Rossy Mukendi, Therese Kapangala, Luc Nkulula and many others are martyrs of the pro-democracy movement in the Congo.

Courageous Congolese continue to make enormous sacrifices for a better future for the sons and daughters of the Congo. As Congo enters 2019, Congolese youth and the broader Congolese society are still pursuing peace and democracy. They are demanding that the Congolese government and the broader African and International community respect the will of the Congolese people following the December 30, 2018 elections. Click here to get the latest updates on the post-election demands of the Congolese people.

Join the global movement in support of a peaceful and just Congo by visiting Telema.org!

Thursday, January 03, 2019

DRC elections : The Catholic Church has the regime of Kinshasa over a barrel

The Congolese people, who are growing suspicious of the maneuvers of the Independent National Electoral Commission CENI in acronym, were awaiting the results of the elections of December 30, 2018 when the Congolese government shut down the internet across the country. For the majority of the population, this move confirms the bad intentions of the government in complicity with the CENI. On the same day, while the DRC government was cutting the country’s internet services, the Secretary General and spokesperson of CENCO (Catholic  Bishops Conference), Fr Donatien Nshole, intervened  to make a partial presentation of the electoral process throughout the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Nshole announced that they received 17,023 reports on voting operations, meaning informations of 78, 22% voting centers throughout the Republic.

Through its reports the CENCO declares that the general climate of the voting process was relatively calm.  In several polling stations the CENI respected the closure of polling station procedure. The CENI relaunched voting operations where the vote was interrupted. Polling stations, it says, worked relatively well.

The voting operations were interrupted due to:

- Malfunction of the voting machine. Therefore some voters could not vote;
- In some polling stations there was no  ballots counting;
- Observers and witnesses have been excluded from certain counting centers.

The General-Secretariat of CENCO says that it remains in constant contact with the CENI and all stakeholders in order to find solutions to the mentioned incidents.

In the room « Marie reine de la paix », the abbot went on to presenting the counting report. He quoted 3,496 reports which attest that:

- the Presidents of the polling stations opened the ballot box in front of the witnesses and the observers;

- 1,181 reports show that the counting process started between 5 pm and 6 pm, while 2,990 reports indicate that the counting started at 7 pm;

- 3,626 reports show that the number of ballot papers in the ballot box was equal to the electronic count;

- 1.959 reports indicate that the report on the sorting process, the results sheet of the voting machine and the results sheet of the manual count were signed by all the members of the counting center, the witnesses who were present and the 5 designated voters ;

- 2,574 reports indicate that the minutes of the polling operations, the report on the sorting process, the results sheet of the voting machine and the manual counting sheet were given to the witnesses who were present;

- 2,839 reports attest that the polling results sheet was displayed at the end of the count, but 342 attest that the voting results sheet has not yet been displayed.

I THINK THAT THERE IS A SENTENCE MISSING HERE TO INTRODUCE THIS QUOTE BOTH IN FRENCH AND IN ENGLISH !  (Suggestion : Addressing the nation, the government, the political parties and those who attended his press conference ,the Secretary General of CENCO, Donation Nshole, went on by saying:)

"The General Secretariat of CENCO asks the Congolese people to remain calm while waiting for the results to ensure the credibility of the results.

The General Secretariat of CENCO asks the CENI to pursue any action ensuring the process transparency, the display of the manual counting results at the polling stations, the identification of the Local Compilation Centers of the CLCR Results, and to provide observers access to these centers.
The General Secretariat of CENCO congratulates the government for ensuring the smooth functioning of the Internet.  I am sorry to learn just before entering the room that the internet was cut. Unfortunately the message was already signed, thank you!

During the Mass of the first day of the year, the Catholic Church of the Democratic Republic of Congo preached about the birth of Jesus Christ, referring to the book of Luke chapter 2, verse 18 to 24.  The homily delivered at the end of the Mass referred to the current situation with regard to the elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo and underscored the need for vigilance.

The position of the Catholic Church puts the regime of Kinshasa in a very difficult and uncomfortable situation. On one hand CENCO holds the credible results of the elections and on the other hand it calls to civil mobilization through the idea of vigilance. We all know that the Catholic church, through its Lay Committee ( CLC- Lay Coordination Committee), is the biggest and the strongest mobilizing force in DRC. They are the ones, following three marches of protest in 2017 and 2018, who managed to obtain of the regime in Kinshasa to organize the elections of December 30, 2018.

The Catholic Church has the regime of Kinshasa over a barrel!

Jean-Marie Kalonji
Coordinator
Quatrieme Voie