Congolese President confirms elections to take place on Dec 30

Last Updated: Fri, Dec 28, 2018 08:01 hrs

[DR Congo], Dec 28 (ANI): Amid rising protests against government's decision of postponing presidential elections slated to be held on December 30, President Joseph Kabila has confirmed that the voting will take place on its scheduled time.

Al Jazeera quoted the Congolese President as saying, "The date has now been fixed, the 30th of December, which is in two days time, and I believe that elections will take place on that particular date."

Kabila who has held the Presidential post for over 17 years in the country was held accountable by the opposition forces who claimed that he delayed the voting in order to extend his term in the office.

To this Kabila responded, "The composition of the electoral commission does not give any advantages to anyone composant - meaning you have the majority [ruling party], you have the opposition which is represented in the commission, and of course the civil society. The issue (that) the electoral commission been biased is nonsense."

The President further added that the decision to postpone elections was undertaken because it took more than two years to complete the entire registration process of over 46 million voters in the country.

Presidential elections in the North African country was postponed twice, especially after the Independent National Election Commission (CENI) cancelled the December 23 vote on Wednesday in three cities, including Beni, Butembo and Yumbi, after voting machines were burnt in a massive fire in one of the main warehouses in Kinshasa. The Congolese election commission blamed ethnic violence and increasing Ebola cases as the major causes for posting elections in the three eastern states of Congo.

Meanwhile, a huge agitation was carried out by the protesters all over the country on Thursday after the election commission declared that the voting was likely to be held in March next year. The security forces also reportedly used burned tyres and tear gas shells to dismiss the demonstrators from the streets.

President Kabila refuted such uprising and claimed peaceful campaigns taking place in the country by saying, "An electoral process is always a sensitive issue. During an electoral process you have tensions, the most important thing is to have the necessary police force that is well equipped in order to deal with that. At one given time we did not have that capacity but we have been building that capacity."(ANI)