Democratic challenger calls for revenge


The runner-up in the controversial Democratic Republic of Congo presidential election has proposed conducting the survey again within six months.

In a letter to the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Martin Fayulu reaffirmed his claim that the result of the vote had been manipulated, and suggested "holding the elections again in six months."

Felix Tshisekedi was declared the winner of the December 30 vote with 38.5% of the vote, against Fayulu's 34.8%.

Fayulu, whose letter was released on Monday, said the DRC's Independent National Election Commission (CENI) "simply fabricated the published results."

He pointed to reports from independent election monitors and observers from his own coalition, Lamuka, as well as to vote on CENI's own leaked statistics for the press.

"[All] testify that I was elected president of the Democratic Republic of Congo with more than 60% of the votes, "he said.

Fayulu suggested setting up a special AU committee to check the results.

The two-day AU summit, which ended on Monday, was attended by Tshisekedi, who was elected the organization's second vice president for 2019.

He also met UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and European Union foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini.

Fayulu's bitterness over the outcome of the election mixed with relief outside the country that the vote was quiet by DRC standards and led to the country's first transition to peaceful power.

Tshisekedi succeeded Joseph Kabila, whose 18-year term was criticized for authoritarianism, rights abuses and corruption.

Both Fayulu and Tshisekedi are from the ranks of the opposition.

The election should have taken place in late 2016, but Kabila remained in office for another two years, invoking a provisional clause in the constitution.


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