After the Constitutional Court of the Democratic Republic of the Congo confirmed Felix Tshisekedi’s presidential election win, rejecting claims of fraud, on Sunday, runner-up Martin Fayulu has declared himself as the country’s only legitimate president. He has even appealed the international community to not recognize the poll results and called on his supporters to organize peaceful protests across the country.
According to CNN, the court declared Tshisekedi as the presidential election winner after Fayulu failed to prove that the election commission had announced false results.
“With this ruling, the constitutional court has defied the Congolese people, the African Union, and the whole international community,” Fayulu said after the ruling was made.
Fayulu argued that Tshisekedi’s win was the result of a secret deal between Tshisekedi and outgoing President Joseph Kabila to cheat him out of a clear win of more than 60 percent. DRC’s influential Catholic Church has also rejected the election results citing figures compiled by the Church’s 40,000 election observers across the vast Central African country. As per the data collected, the election winner Tshieskedi only received 18 percent of the votes.
The 16-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC), which had previously called out for recounting of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Presidential Election votes, has now congratulated Tshisekedi for the win and called on all Congolese to accept the vote’s outcome for a peaceful handover of power.
Several African leaders including Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, Tanzanian President John Magufuli and South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa have also congratulated Tshisekedi after the court confirmed the win. Ramaphosa in a statement urged the Congolese people to “move on to consolidate democracy and preserve peace, stability, and security of the country.”
Tshisekedi, who is expected to be sworn in within the next 10 days, said on Sunday that the court’s decision confirming him as the winner of the presidential election was a victory for the entire country.