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News > World

DR Congo: Opposition Fayulu Claims Victory, Will Appeal Result

  • Supporter of Martin Fayulu displays a sign in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 11, 2019.

    Supporter of Martin Fayulu displays a sign in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 11, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 12 January 2019

The Lamuka candidate rejects the official scrutiny and assures he won the presidential elections with 61% of the votes.

Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) opposition candidate Martin Fayulu claimed victory in the presidential elections held on Dec. 30, 2018, and announced that he will appeal to the Constitutional Court to contest the declared victory of candidate Felix Tshisekedi.

DR Congo Opposition Leader Felix Tshisekedi Wins Election

"We will be in the Constitutional Court to file an appeal," Fayulu told his supporters during a meeting, which attracted the attention of police who later dispersed the crowd with tear gas.

According to the data of Lamuka, an electoral coalition ally, Fayulu obtained 61% of the votes against 18% of Felix Tshisekedi, who stands as the winner of the polls since Jan.10 according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI).

Official data states that Tshisekedi obtained 38.57% of the votes, followed by Fayulu with 34.86% and Emmanuel Shadary with 23.84%.

"He who is right is not afraid," Fayulu said and warned that he will demand each polling station's minutes be published in order to clarify doubts about who won the presidential elections.

Fayulu is not the only one dissatisfied with CENI's results. The National Episcopal Conference of the Congo (CENCO) also assured that the official data do not coincide with the organization's figures, which were compiled by more than 40,000 non-governmental electoral observers.

The unexpected victory of Tshisekedi has provoked, so far, nationwide demonstrations, in which more than a dozen people have been reportedly killed by security forces, who allegedly fired indiscriminately to disperse protesters.

The international community, however, welcomed the election results with caution.  The European Union (EU) has requested that CENI publish the minutes of each polling station in order to dispel discrepancies.

"At this critical moment for the country's democratic transition, it is essential that all political actors refrain from resorting to violence," Maja Kocijancic, EU Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, urged.

The president of CENI, Corneille Nangaa, appeared - by videoconference - before the UN Security Council and warned that there are only two viable options; "either accept the announced results or cancel completely the elections."

DR Congo's Dec. 30 elections put an end to two years of delays to elect the successor of President Joseph Kabila, who has been in power since 2001.

Upon Kabila transferring power to the next president, DR Congo would have had its 'first peaceful political transition' since its independence from Belgium in 1960.

But, the elections have been marked by technical failures, delays and unrest since the opening of polling stations, especially in the territories that sympathized with the opposition.

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