DR Congo presidential election: Outcry as Tshisekedi named winner
Opposition figure Felix Tshisekedi has been named winner of the recent presidential election in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The country’s powerful Catholic Church, the only truly nation-wide institution, has stated that the announced results do not match polling data collected by its 40,000 election monitors. The announced runner up Martin Fayulu, another opposition figure, has declared the announcement to be an “electoral coup” and “a grave attack on the country’s dignity and people.” To the surprise of many, the government has not contested the election, prompting allegations that Kabila had made a secret deal with Tshisekedi. Experts are saying that the government would see his presidencyas the “least bad alternative” to a Shadary victory, as it also comes with potential influence and the perception of electoral legitimacy (the government publicly backed 3rd-place finisher Emmanuel Shadary). At least two protest-related deaths have been reported, and security forces have deployed around the country in expectation of increased escalation. The constitutional court has 10 days to confirm the election results. If confirmed, the country may see its first peaceful transition of power since independence in 1960.