Opposition parties in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday called on President Joseph Kabila to step down ahead of elections in December but ruled out boycotting the poll. In an exceptional move, five parties signed a joint statement setting out demands ahead of the December 23 presidential vote, whose outcome is crucial for the sprawling, volatile DRC. “We are not going to boycott the elections, because we have known from the very beginning that this is the ruling party’s plan, to push the opposition into boycott the elections,” said Delly Sesanga, a supporter of exiled opposition leader Moise Katumbi.
The statement – issued two days before the start of a two-week registration period for presidential candidates – called for “free, democratic and transparent” elections.
It said the elections had to take place without Kabila as a candidate and without the use of electronic voting machines, which the government controversially wants to deploy.
It was signed by five parties, including the traditional mainstream opposition, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), as well as by parties led by Katumbi and Jean-Pierre Bemba, an ex-vice president and former warlord recently acquitted of war crimes by the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
Full Article: DRC opposition set demands for December poll | News24.