DRC leader claims 'interference' amid vote delay tension

2016-11-16 19:01
Joseph Kabila. (File: AFP)

Joseph Kabila. (File: AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Kinshasa - Democratic Republic of Congo's president on Tuesday vowed to protect his country's sovereignty and denounced "any interference" as the country experiences tensions brought on by a decision to delay the next election.

In his annual state of the nation address, President Joseph Kabila accused unnamed foreign entities of manipulating the country's youth.

He, however, did not provide details.

"This gives me the opportunity to again denounce any interference in the affairs of our country," Kabila said.

Kabila's second term in office expires next month, but DRC's courts have ruled that the election of a new president can be delayed and that Kabila can stay in power until a new leader is chosen.

A deal reached last month calls for the vote to be held in April 2018, though the largest opposition party rejected it.

Twitter messages 

On Monday the prime minister resigned as part of the deal.

Anger over the delay has sparked violence including street clashes in September that killed dozens.

Kabila has not revealed his plans, but he raised the prospect of amending the constitution to allow for a third presidential term when speaking over the weekend with a visiting delegation from the UN Security Council, according to Twitter messages posted by Stephen Hickey, political counselor for the UK's mission to the UN.

Hickey called the remark "very concerning".

Government spokesperson Lambert Mende on Monday said a third term was not being considered but added that Congolese voters could opt to change the constitution "in three, four or five years." On Tuesday, Kabila reiterated past statements that the constitution would be "respected".

Opposition lawmaker Delly Sesanga responded to Tuesday's speech by saying the president's respect for the constitution would be evident "not in a speech but in his actions".

Read more on:    un  |  joseph kabila  |  drc  |  central africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.