Mobutu's son to run for DRC president

2011-09-07 20:50

Kinshasa - Nzanga Mobutu, the son of former dictator Mobutu Sese Seko, has officially filed his candidacy for the Democratic Republic of Congo's November presidential elections, an AFP correspondent reported.

The 40-year-old, who was deputy prime minister and labour minister until his sacking from the government in March, already ran for the vast west African country's top job in 2006.

He trailed far behind Joseph Kabila, also the son of a former president, who is widely expected to seek re-election on November 28, which also happens to be the 14th anniversary of Mobutu Sese Seko's death.

Running for the independent Union of Mobutist Democrats, Nzanga Mobutu, who always carried his father's cumbersome legacy proudly, scored only 4.8% five years ago.

"It's a symbolic day," he told reporters after filing his papers at the electoral commission, in reference to the date of the election coinciding with the anniversary of his father's death.

Mobutu Sese Seko seized power in a 1965 coup, five years after the country's independence from Belgium.

His corrupt rule lasted 31 years until the current president's father Joseph-Desire Kabila toppled him. He died in exile in Morocco in 1997.

Nzanga Mobutu is married to a sister of Jean-Pierre Bemba, a former vice-president on trial for war crimes at the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Despite being held at the world court, Bemba - who lost to Kabila in the 2006 presidential run-off - announced through his Congolese Liberation Movement in July that he intended to stand again this year.

Read more on:    mobutu sese seko  |  jean-pierre bemba  |  joseph kabila  |  drc  |  central africa
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