16 February 2007

Congo-Kinshasa: IEC - We Never Invalidated Any Candidatures, That's Not Our Job


This Friday February 16 2007, the DRC Supreme Court upheld the election by majority suffrage of Mr. Simon Mbatshi as governor of Bas-Congo province. Prior to this announcement, we interviewed Dieudonné Mirimo, the first reporter of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), who spoke on the controversy surrounding the recent governor elections, and gave an assessment on the elections thus far.

Do you think that the elections that you have organised are credible, amidst the allegations of deputy corruption?

The elections that we have organised are completely credible. Nobody yet has been capable of proving these allegations. We were put in charge of all the elections thus far, and the work has been completed. What happens after that does not involve the IEC.

The elections that we have organised are completely credible

If there has been corruption, those that complain of corruption can use the courts and the tribunals. If corruption is proven, we can sanction it. But all this must be pursued through the Congolese justice system.

Regarding the double nationality controversy in the Kasaï governor elections, was it the IEC that invalidated the governor candidatures of the two candidates?

The IEC has never invalidated candidatures. For proof, you have seen the lists that were registered and all the candidates participated in the election yesterday on February 15 2007. Therefore, there was never a problem in relation to the IEC.

We received correspondance from political parties denouncing the double nationality of certain candidates, and we have just transmitted the same message to the parties concerned, in order to clarify the situation. But it's never a question of invalidation on our part, as that is not our job.

How do you assess the outcome of the provincial, senatorial and governor elections?

The results overall are positive. The elections were held in the best conditions, and the results were announced by the IEC according to the calendar made public by the IEC.

Contestations were lodged in relation to the provincial elections, these are all processed and the provincial deputies have finished formulating their internal rules. They have put in place definitive offices, and have proceeded with the senatorial, governors and vice governor elections.

Election corruption complaints must be pursued through the courts

In relation to the senators, they have also started their work. They are in the process of completing their internal rules, which will lead to the election and installation of a definitive office.

In relation to the election of the governors and vice governors, the last stage has started with the two Kasaïs. We have organised the elections, which have taken place in good conditions. Today we will publish the provisional results.

When will the IEC finish its work?

The IEC will finish its work when the general report of the IEC is presented to parliament.

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