Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

South African court rules Jacob Zuma should face corruption charges

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

A Royal Challenge from the Obamas

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Lights go out in Venezuela and Saudi Arabia goes green (part 1)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Stalemate in Spain and Protests in Paris (part 2)

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Cinema, a French love affair

Read more

#TECH 24

'VR' immersive journalism

Read more

REVISITED

Nepal revisited, one year after the deadly earthquake

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

France's River Charente, a rich ecosystem

Read more

FOCUS

Libya: Who's running the country?

Read more

Africa

Observers cite 'irregularities' at DRC polls

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-12-03

Observers from the European Union monitoring elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo reported Thursday they had witnessed "serious irregularities" at polling stations there. The run-up to the ballot also saw violence between rival parties.

AFP - The European Union monitoring mission for the Democratic Republic of Congo’s elections said Thursday it had observed widespread irregularities but needed more time to release a definitive report.

In its preliminary findings on Monday’s polls, the EU team said its 147 observers had seen “numerous irregularities, sometimes serious”, in 79 percent of the polling centres they visited.

Mission chief Mariya Nedelcheva said observers had seen incidents of attempted ballot box stuffing across several provinces, as well as problems of undelivered election materials, unsealed ballot boxes, voters being turned away from polling stations and other problems.

But “this report is preliminary and the EU election observation mission will not draw any definitive conclusion before tabulation is finished and results are announced”, Nedelcheva, a Bulgarian member of the European Parliament, told a press conference.

Preliminary results from the presidential race pitting incumbent Joseph Kabila against a divided opposition field of 10 challengers are expected on December 6, with parliamentary results due January 13.

Nedelcheva also criticised human rights violations during the election campaign, which was marred by clashes between rival parties’ supporters and police crackdowns on opposition rallies.

She said presidential candidates had not had equal access to the national television network, with Kabila getting 86 percent of airtime to just one percent for his chief rival, Etienne Tshisekedi.

She also called into question the independence of the judiciary, after Kabila nominated 18 new magistrates during the campaign—worrying for the elections since the supreme court is charged with examining the preliminary results and declaring them official.

But the EU joined the Carter Center, another major international observer mission, in calling for more time to gather and verify reports from around the vast central African country two-thirds the size of Western Europe.

Date created : 2011-12-01

  • DR CONGO

    Observers urge calm during DRC vote count

    Read more

  • DR CONGO

    Congo opposition candidate alleges election fraud

    Read more

  • DR CONGO

    Counting begins in DR Congo after chaotic election

    Read more

COMMENT(S)