SADC heads call for security of DRC election candidates

27 Dec 2018 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 27 DEC (NAMPA) – The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of States have encouraged the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to assure the security of all election candidates in the upcoming elections slated for Sunday.

The DRC's Presidential, Legislative and Provincial Elections are set to take place on Sunday after having been postponed from 23 December 2018 due to a delay in deployment of voting material to polling stations after a fire destroyed material in the central warehouse of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Kinshasa.

The postponement also follows loss of life and destruction of property in incidents of violence in Kalemie, Lubumbashi and Mbuji-Mayi and Kinshasa, earlier this month.

A declaration of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) and the SADC Summit of Heads of State issued by the SADC Secretariat on Thursday said a mini-summit was held on 26 December 2018 in Brazzaville, Congo to discuss the situation in the DRC.

The Heads of State called on political parties and civil society to exercise restraint in order for the elections to take place in a peaceful environment, the declaration stated.

The Heads of States considered the political and security situation in the Great Lakes Region and the SADC region and reaffirmed the importance of peace, security and stability, which are key to development.

The SADC Heads of States further raised deep concerns in view of the acts of violence, which occurred during the electoral campaign in some areas in the DRC and called on the need to fulfil the commitments made within the context of peace and security and the framework agreement on peace and security

The SADC mini-summit was led by Chairperson of the ICGLR and President of the Republic of Congo, Denis Sassou Nguesso and Namibian President and SADC Chairperson, Hage Geingob.