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Vol 47 No 16

Published 4th August 2006


Two elections, one country

Voting and political sentiment is more divided than ever between the east and west of the country

Two figures - President Joseph Kabila and Vice President Jean-Pierre Bemba - are dominating Congolese politics after the 30 July elections, which have been hailed as a success by United Nations (UN) and the United States' Carter Center, despite huge organisational problems. More serious than the logistics is the evident rift between voters in the east, who have strongly backed Kabila, and those in the west, especially in the capital Kinshasa, who have strongly backed Bemba. By most counts, Kabila and his party, Parti du Peuple pour la Réconstruction et la Démocratie, were ahead after three days of counting, although Bemba insists that he is going to win and accordingly convinced thousands of his supporters in Kinshasa.

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