DRC: CENI calls for additional resources for the deployment of electoral materials
In the DRC, the CENI confirms that elections will be held on December 20, 2023. However, several challenges remain, including the deployment of election materials.
The headquarters of the CENI, the Electoral Commission, in Kinshasa, DRC, January 9, 2019. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
By: RFI Follow
With our correspondent in Kinshasa, Patient Ligodi
The Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) says it does not want a shift in the electoral calendar. Since Tuesday, it has therefore referred the matter to the President of the Republic to indicate that it urgently needs four Antonovs and ten helicopters in order to transport electoral materials to all localities. The CENI justifies its request by the fact that the few planes available in the country are used by the various candidates during this electoral campaign period and that the country is affected by a fuel shortage problem.
Normally, we would use boats and other ordinary means. Not everything we import today can come by sea. It has to come by air and it's a huge cost. And even here at home, because once these items have arrived, we need faster means there as well. It's really a race against time," said Denis Kadima, president of the electoral centre.
Read alsoDRC: despite concerns, the CENI remains confident about the timing of the elections
Denis Kadima also highlights the work already accomplished in terms of deployment: "We are more than 90% ready. The only equipment still outside the country will have to leave its manufacturing countries by December 10 at the latest, so in a few days. If this is done, all we will have to do is get them into the country."
Despite the pressure, he puts things into perspective by evoking past experiences, and wants to reassure that the elections will be held on the scheduled date. "This is not an unprecedented situation. It's always like that, elections are something we usually do at high speed," he said. For its part, the government assures that all means will be used to succeed in this challenge.
Read alsoElections in the DRC: after a week of electoral campaigning, the first lessons learned
La Lucha, the country's main citizens' movement, calls for a "useful vote"
The collective calls on citizens to vote to sanction the authorities and deputies who have failed in their mission. The campaign in Kinshasa, called "He said, he didn't do", is spreading across Congolese territory.
By Pascal Mulegwa
Bienvenu Matumo, one of the activists of the Struggle for Change (Lucha): "This is a call for a responsible vote so that the culture of punishment is promoted in our society. It is not normal for those who have failed to be re-elected or retained in office for which they have negative results. We are going to go down to the ground to take over public spaces and ask the Congolese to be vigilant and vote responsibly. And this also applies to national deputies. Many deputies have not produced results, so they are also concerned by this campaign which is extended throughout the Republic with territorial variations. Kisangani, Goma, Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, Kananga... It's important to negotiate this shift on December 20, the future of Congo depends on it."
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