MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS STATEMENT ON CURRENT POLITICAL SITUATION IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO
KINSHASA—Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Minister of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation Raymond Tshibanda N'tungamulongo released a statement on 24 May 2016 in response to recent public comments by representatives of certain partner countries on the political situation in the DRC.
In his statement, Minister Tshibanda noted that “The DRC is based on the rule of law, and the Government has the obligation to ensure compliance with laws and regulations in order to guarantee public order, peace and security for all of its citizens. The DRC cannot not allow any to abuse the rights of its people.”
The Minister also explained that “The Government is committed to fighting impunity in all circumstances, regardless of the delinquency of such acts and those who commit them. This commitment should not be misinterpreted as an attempt to narrow the political space.”
The Government continues to work tirelessly so that the Congolese people can enjoy their fundamental rights by promoting civil liberties such as freedom of the press, freedom of expression and other rights guaranteed by the Constitution,” Minister Tshibanda continued. “We expect that instead of using threatening rhetoric that is contrary to international law, our partners will maintain constructive dialogue that is respectful of the values and principles that govern international relations.”
The Minister specifically addressed the issue of elections, stating that “The delay in the DRC’s electoral process is largely the result of two major factors: the need for reliable and inclusive electoral voter lists, and a consensus on the electoral calendar. Progress is being made in updating the electoral lists, with the implementation of pilot tests and the upcoming acquisition of required equipment. Regarding the electoral calendar, the government continues to seek consensus through a national dialogue since electoral timelines published previously by the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) have been rejected by opposition parties.”
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