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Ballot boxes open for historic presidential elections in the Congo

The ballot boxes for the presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo Sunday morning open. It must be the first time that the power in the country in a relatively peaceful way is transferred.

More than 46 million Congolese voters have registered for the elections. There can be up to 17.00 hours for voting.

The first hours of the vote are chaotic, partly due to a storm in the capital, Kinshasa, that the hallway to the polling stations more difficult and in several places allows for power outages. In the east of the country, a lot of delayed openings of stemlocaties and long queues reported.

In large parts of the African country allows people to Sunday vote. In three districts in the eastern provinces may, the people did not vote, according to the government, is that the spread of the ebola outbreak in the country and because of the risks of violence by armed groups.

These people are allowed to march to the ballot box, but then the new president has already been chosen. That happens in January. In the excluded regions, is home to many supporters of the democratic opposition candidates.

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First peaceful transfer of power in Congo since 1960

Elections since 2016 is repeatedly postponed

The elections are in november 2016, and several times postponed. The incumbent president Joseph Kabila took those decisions out of fear for riots. Ultimately the Congolese last week to the polls, but that was a week later, so all the equipment in the right place.

In the run-up to the elections, several dead and injured, cases by violence between supporters of different presidential candidates.

The opposition says that Kabila’s election all two years of delays to be longer to stay in power. He may after two terms as president no longer participate.

Elections in the Congo

The ballot boxes are Sunday morning open for historic presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
© AFP

et must be the first time that the power in the country on a (relatively) peaceful way is transferred.
© AFP

More than 46 million Congolese voters have registered for the elections. There can be up to 17.00 hours for voting.
© AFP

In three districts in the eastern provinces may, the people did not vote, according to the government, is that the spread of the ebola outbreak in the country and because of the risks of violence by armed groups.
© AFP

Presidential candidate Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary of the ruling party of the current Congolese president Joseph Kabila to bring his voice out in Kinshasa.
© AFP

Presidential candidate Martin Fayulu agree in Kinshasa.
© AFP

In the run-up to the elections, several dead and injured, cases by violence between supporters of different candidates.
© AFP

Three major contenders

There are 21 presidential candidates participating in the elections, but three of them have, according to experts, the best paper. Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary is the candidate of the party of the outgoing president Kabila. His main opponents are businessman Martin Fayulu, and Felix Tshisekedi, the son of former opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi.

Many Congolese hope for renewal in the country. They are the corruption in the government was, and wish that something is done to poverty.

For Kabila, the independent Congo, but two other leaders had. The father of the president, Laurent-Desiré Kabila, was established in 1997 as president. In 2001 he was murdered by his favourite child soldier, and was succeeded by his son.

Four million dead the Second Congolese civil War

Under Kabila senior, the country was torn apart by the Second Congolese civil War (1994-2003). Which is also called the African world War ” because nine African states were involved. Around four million people lost their lives during the conflict.

In large parts of the inhospitable Congo is still regularly on the fiercely fought over by various militias, government troops and forces from neighbouring countries.

This was Joseph-Désiré Mobutu (who had omdopen to Mobutu Sese Seko Nkuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga, “the almighty warrior who, by his endurance and rigid will to win, victory to victory and fire in his wake leaves’, red.) the leader of the Congo.

He became in 1965 the leader of the country and remained that until his death in 1997. Under his leadership, created a kleptocratisch rule that the Congolese treasury was freely plundered.

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