Anyone who undermines the political might of Joseph Kabila does so at their own risks.
The former leader, despite leaving office after the December 30 2018 elections, has a strong influence over the country’s polity.
Joseph Kabila served as the President of Democratic Republic of Congo for 18 years - between January 2001 and January 2019. He took office just ten days after the assassination of his father, President Laurent-Désiré Kabila.
Many refer to him as the godfather of politics in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and they are not far from the truth.
There are still many critics, who believe that the election that brought in the incumbent president of DR Congo, Felix Tshisekedi, was as a result of a backroom deal brokered between the two parties to undermine the chances of a popular opposition figure, Martin Fayulu.
Martin Fayulu and the Catholic Church have not minced words in his rejection of the December 30, 2018 elections, with the former calling it an electoral coup.
There appear to be some credits in the accusations because Kabila’s influence has continued to grow despite the fact that President Felix Tshisekedi is from a different party. Indeed, there must have been some sort of agreement between both parties.
News coming out of the country this morning has had opposition parties kicking the dust as they have further lost 23 parliamentary seats to Joseph Kabila’s coalition. This shows the level of influence the former president still exercises over the House of Parliament and the country in general.
Many concerned parties raised eye bros when the courts in DR Congo sacked 23 parliamentary members from the main opposition party. This was part of the court’s work on electoral disputes arising from the December 2018 legislative vote.
The issue was further aggravated when all 23 seats taken from the opposition was handed over to candidates of the Joseph Kabila – led coalition, Common Front for Congo, FCC.
Reacting to the development, EEC - the Protestant Church of the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, has described the ruling as a “violation of the law,” and questioned its legitimacy and timing.
“The ECC notes with regret the violation of the electoral law, especially since this law says that invalidations must be made within 60 days, that the constitutional court can invalidate the deputies in June, 5 months later, it is breaking the law,” said Pastor Moïse Bwema, chief of staff of the ECC president.
The current speaker of the National Assembly and Prime Minister are both Kabila allies. With the FCC backing the leadership of Jeanine Mabunda as parliament speaker and Kabila backing Ilunga Ilunkamba as Prime Minister.
Who says Joseph Kabila is no longer the leader of DR Congo?
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Header Image Credit: Al Jazeera