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  • AU Chair Moussa Faki Mahamat (L) and AU President Paul Kagame interacts at a high-level meeeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Jan. 17, 2019.

    AU Chair Moussa Faki Mahamat (L) and AU President Paul Kagame interacts at a high-level meeeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Jan. 17, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 18 January 2019

The high-level consultative meeting of African leaders expressed doubts about the official provisional results of the presidential elections.

The African Union (AU) Thursday urged the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to suspend the proclamation of the final results of the presidential election, which was held on Dec. 30, because there are serious doubts about the provisional data.

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Southern Africa Bloc Urges DR Congo Election Vote Recount

In a high-level consultative meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia's capital, the AU members concluded that there are uncertainties surrounding the provisional results proclaimed by DR Congo's Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) on Jan. 10, which gave the victory to Felix Tshisekedi.

“The heads of state and government attending the meeting concluded that there were serious doubts on the conformity of the provisional results, as proclaimed by the National Independent Electoral Commission, with the votes cast. Accordingly, [they] called for the suspension of the proclamation of the final results of the elections,” the AU stated in a statement issued from its headquarters.

The African Union leaders agreed to urgently send a high-level delegation to DR Congo, which will comprise the current AU president and Rwandan ruler Paul Kagame, other heads of state and the AU Secretariat's head, Moussa Faki Mahamat.

That delegation will seek "to interact with all Congolese stakeholders, with the view to reaching a consensus on a way out of the post-electoral crisis in the country."

"Elections in DR Congo: the country still deprived of Internet."

This decision caused surprise among politicians and analysts given that the African Union encompasses 55 countries. This integration bloc seeks to rid Africa of the vestiges of colonization and apartheid as well as to safeguard the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state members.

According to the results published by CENI,  Felix Tshisekedi obtained 38.57% of the votes, Martin Fayulu had 34.86%, and Emmanuel Shadary got 23.84%.

Fayulu, a national deputy, rejected these results saying they are "invented", along with the National Episcopal Conference (CENCO) which also disagree with the figures.

In fact, Fayulu challenged the results before the Constitutional Court on Jan. 12 and demanded a manual recount of the votes, declaring that he obtained some 61% of the votes.

From the international community, the European Union (EU) has urged DR Congo to publish the polling minutes of the elections to appease doubts about Tshisekedi's triumph, while the United States has demanded a "clarification."

The 2018 presidential elections ended two years of delays and uncertainty since President Joseph Kabila - who has remained in power for the last 18 years - concluded his final legal term in 2016.

The electoral process was marked by numerous technical failures and delays in the opening of polling stations.

DR Congo is Sub-Saharan Africa's largest country and it stands out for its enormous mineral resources, although this natural wealth has not brought most of the Congolese population out of poverty yet.

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