DRC: A Crisis That Was Warned About



By Scott Morgan

On September 18th, the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo was supposed to announce that elections would be held on November 19th of this year. Instead the body announced that they would petition the Constitutional Court seeking a delay in the Presidential Elections.

It appears that both the general public and the State Security Forces were expecting such a move to be made. Supporters of the various Opposition Candidates have taken to the streets burning tires at first and then confronting the Security Forces in a series of clashes that have turned both violent and deadly.

This triggers a Constitutional Crisis in theory. Elections were supposed to happen by November 19th of this year. However another clause of the Constitution states that the President remains in office until his successor is sworn in. The Constitutional Court acting on behalf of a request for a ruling did, in fact, state that the current incumbent has to remain in office until his successor is sworn in.

It is clear that President Kabila does not want to leave office. In the past he has only done what was necessary and to his own political benefit. Some of the Electoral Reforms that were needed after the 2006 and 2011 polls have not been implemented, and are now only being either proposed or implemented due to the perceived benefit to the coalition that supports the President.

For the region of Central Africa this is just the latest blow against Democratic Ideals. A controversial election across the river in the Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville) which saw an incumbent re-elected with a fraudulent count, A similar event taking place in Gabon with a challenge that will have International Observers watching the results are just examples of how entrenched leaders are seeking to remain in power.

There is some conversation now about the most dreaded word in the English Language. That word is Sanctions.
Sanctions: are an action taken by Governments when there is a call for them to take action when its either against their self-interests or if they have no desire to impose them but want to be seen as taking the situation seriously due to the copious amount of media coverage.
There has been talk regarding how the missed deadline will trigger sanctions from both the Europeans and the United States. Since the UN General Assembly is meeting in New York, this week, there will be several conversations about how to and against whom these sanctions will be imposed.

Since 1998, the people of the DRC have suffered from Invasion, Rape, Poor Governance and Natural Disasters. They have shown an ability to be resilient under very trying circumstances. But yet some of their most trying problems occur when those seeking to assist them actually make things worse.

However, not giving the people the voice to state how they approve or disapprove of the current state of leadership will set a dangerous precedent not only for the Country and for the region. Whether or not this leads to another protracted struggle is yet to be determined.


[The views expressed in this publication are solely those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Dissecting Society]

Comments

  1. Hi Morgan,

    I'm just wondering whether this is a typical case of power grip or if there's something else behind it that we haven't figured out yet?

    Cheers

    ReplyDelete
  2. Do you think Leopod´seeds died away? the suffering we see today in the DRC is embedded in history and the Mafia group with an invisible hand. Outward it looks like power struggle, No it is a resources struggle by those who want to rape DRC and its Citezens the right to live in a dignified life and have peace.

    ReplyDelete

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