DRC: Terms of Deputies in High Insecurity Provinces Extended for Several Months

2 Min Read

Despite their mandates expiring following the December 2023 elections, the 16 national deputies representing the territories of Rutshuru and Masisi in North Kivu, as well as Kwamouth in Mai-Ndombe province, will continue their duties until legislative elections are held in these regions.

The Constitutional Court rendered this decision on Tuesday. It’s worth noting that insecurity in these areas prevented the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) from conducting successful polls last December. Unfortunately, insecurity still plagues these regions of the DRC.

Faced with a serious escalation of violence in the territories of Masisi, Rutshuru, and Kwamouth, the CENI is cautiously planning the identification and registration of voters from July 1st to July 20th, 2024.

However, this decision is contingent upon awaiting authorization and security assurances from the government for personnel, voters, and electoral materials, given the precarious security situation.

Particularly in Kwamouth, Mai-Ndombe province, intercommunal clashes between the Yaka and Teke communities have led to the destruction of nearly half of the villages since 2022 and the loss of hundreds of civilian lives, according to UN experts. The presence of the Mobondo militia, which has bolstered its offensive capabilities and now organizes military-style attacks, further complicates the situation.

Masisi and Rutshuru are also not spared from violence, with the M23 continuing to strengthen militarily.

The situation is further complicated by the confirmed presence of Rwandan soldiers and military equipment on Congolese territory, posing an additional challenge for holding elections in the short term, according to a government source.


Share this Article
Leave a comment