25 March 2019

Congo-Kinshasa: DRC President Tshisekedi Confronts Kabila's Establishment

Photo: Michael Grosss/US Department of State
U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo meets with Democratic Republic of the Congo President Felix Tshisekedi on the margins of the NATO Ministerial at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., in Washington, D.C., on April 3, 2019. [State Department photo by Michael Gross/ Public Domain]

The newly elected president of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Felix Tshisekedi, appears to be attempting to consign Joseph Kabila to history -- with a bit of help from the US.

Democratic Republic of Congo President Felix Tshisekedi is increasingly asserting independence from predecessor Joseph Kabila, despite Kabila having allegedly facilitated his victory in the 30 December 2018 presidential elections.

And the US is evidently helping Tshisekedi's bid to stop Kabila continuing to pull the strings of power.

While Tshisekedi was officially declared the winner of the presidential poll, despite widespread allegations of massive vote-rigging, Kabila's Common Front for the Congo (FCC) officially won a clear majority of 337 of the 500 seats in the National Assembly elections on 30 December 2018. Tshisekedi's Direction for Change coalition came a distant third with just 46 seats.

On that basis, Kabila's FCC has been demanding the major say in the appointment of a Prime Minister, hoping thereby to retain a big hand in government. But Tshisekedi has been resisting.

Last week Tshisekedi blocked the inauguration of newly elected senators because he said they had been corruptly elected. He also postponed the elections for provincial governors, due on March 26, until further notice....


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