US asks Kinshasa to hold elections in 2018 or risk losing its backing
DRC: The US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, told the Democratic Republic of Congo to hold elections next year, rather than delay them until 2019, if it wanted to count on American backing.
“Elections must be held in 2018, (otherwise) the DRC should not count on the support of the United States and the international community,” Haley said, after meeting Corneille Nangaa, head of DRC’S National Electoral Commission.
“We are not going to support a timetable which doesn’t clearly show that the elections will be held in 2018,” she said, according to a French translation of her remarks.
Polls in DRC were scheduled to be held by the end of 2017, under a transitional deal with the opposition aimed at avoiding fresh political bloodshed after President Joseph Kabila refused to step down when his second mandate ended last December.
The international community has pressed for a vote to choose a new head of state to be held as soon as possible — but no timetable has been set so far.