DRC: Felix Tshisekedi blocks new senators over corruption claims


Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) President Felix Tshisekedi has blocked newly-elected senators from taking office over allegations of corruption.

Acting interior minister Basile Olongo announced on Monday that the president “has suspended the installation of senators” amid accusations that votes were bought in the March 15 ballot that elected a dramatic victory for former president Joseph Kabila’s Common Front for Congo (FCC) party.

President blocks new senators

President Felix Tshisekedi’s Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) party suffered an overwhelming defeat in senate elections earlier this month. The FCC won more than two-thirds of 100 seats available in the vote, handing a significant amount of power to former president Joseph Kabila.

The FCC already enjoys a significant majority in the lower house of parliament after elections held on December 30, which were also shrouded in claims of vote fraud.

Felix Tshisekedi was the surprise winner of a presidential vote also held on December 30 but his power of influence was quickly diminished by the FCC’s parliamentary victory. If Kabila’s party can also secure a majority in the upper house, the DRC’s former president would make it increasingly difficult for his successor to pass reforms.

Featured image: By VOA / Arsène Séverin – https://www.voaafrique.com/a/rencontre-de-tshisekedi-et-sassou-n-guesso-%C3%A0-brazzaville/4777435.html, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=76541935

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.