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Vol 59 No 17

Published 31st August 2018


Congo-Kinshasa

Kabila's two-front offensive

While stacking the election odds in favour of his candidate, the President is promoting men to cope with militia violence

Many oppositionists believe that the nomination of Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary to stand in the presidential election in place of President Joseph Kabila means the continuation of the two-term head of state's rule in all but name. This impression is confirmed by the exclusion of two of the most important presidential challengers, Jean-Pierre Bemba and Moïse Katumbi, from the poll. The Kabila-friendly electoral commission ruled against Bemba's candidacy over his International Criminal Court witness-tampering conviction and the regime seeks Katumbi's arrest on what he says are spurious charges. If Shadary wins, the pundits are saying, Kabila will rule from the shadows as if he had never succumbed to massive regional and Western pressure to leave power and called elections for December.

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