National Assembly accepts Denis Kadima as head of DRC’s Electoral commission amidst violent protest

The National Assembly of the Democratic Republic of Congo endorsed on Saturday the choice of Denis Kadima as president of the Electoral commission during a stormy plenary session and despite the veto of the Catholic episcopate which accused him of “corruption”, parliamentary sources said.
The control of the very strategic Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) is a key issue for gaining or keeping power in the DRC, as its president has always played a crucial role in the proclamation of election results.
“The majority of national deputies have opted to ratify the choice of Denis Kadima as president of the Independent National Electoral Commission during today’s closed-door plenary session,” MP Guy Mafuta of the ruling Union Sacrée de la Nation coalition told AFP.
Opposition MPs disrupted the plenary session by tearing up the lectern and microphones, whistling and making threats against majority members, he added.
The next step is the appointment by ordinance of President Felix Tshisekedi.
The choice of Denis Kadima by six out of eight religious denominations has been challenged by the National Episcopal Conference of Congo (Cenco) and by Protestants united in the Church of Christ in Congo (ECC). These two religious denominations accuse him of “corruption”.
In the DRC, the law mandates eight recognized denominations to nominate the president of the Céni, which must then be endorsed by the National Assembly before the official appointment by the head of state.
In July 2020, the Catholic and Protestant churches vetoed the choice of Ronsard Malonda, accused of being too close to former President Joseph Kabila.
Late Saturday, the unsuccessful candidate in the last presidential election Martin Fayulu promised to descend with his supporters to the parliamentary headquarters if the choice of Denis Kadima was ratified.

About Geraldine Boechat 1812 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia