The Presidential election results in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which was expected to be announced on Sunday, have been postponed again and this time it remains unknown as to when the election results would be finally ready.
DRC’s electoral commission (CENI) announced its decision to postpone the result announcement after it received only 47 percent of vote tally sheets as of Saturday.
“We ask the nation to remain patient for the time it will take to consolidate all our data,” Corneille Nangaa, the head of CENI, told the Reuters news agency, reported The Guardian.
While the election commission blames logistical problems posed by the DRC’s size for the delay, opposition members and observers claim that releasing the results late could be part of a scheme by the Congolese government to rig the election results.
Notably, President Joseph Kabila, who has been in power since 2001 and has already served his constitutionally mandated two terms, was not eligible to stand in the election again. However, his handpicked Presidential election candidate, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, is widely seen as a puppet who if gets elected will likely work on Kabila orders and help him hold the reins indirectly until 2023.
Some analysts even fear that prolonged uncertainty could result in deadly clashes, similar to the violence that broke out in the central African country after the 2006 and 2011 elections.
Meanwhile, the US President, Donald Trump, on Friday announced that 80 US military personnel had been deployed to Gabon “in response to the possibility that violent demonstrations may occur in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in reaction to the 30 December 2018 elections there”.
In a letter to congressional leaders, Trump noted that the military would remain deployed there until DRC’s security situation gets stable enough and that more could be deployed if necessary.
Don’t forget to check with TheChiefObserver for more updates on DRC Presidential Election results.