DR Congo to hold presidential election December 23


Democratic Republic of the Congo will hold its presidential election on Sunday that many believe could lead to the country’s first democratic transfer of power, following decades marked by authoritarian rule, coups and deadly conflict.

The outcome of the long-delayed vote to choose President Joseph Kabila’s successor is believed to be far from certain, after a campaign marred by violent crackdowns on opposition rallies and the destruction of thousands of the capital’s voting machines in a fire last week.

Kabila’s preferred successor, Emmanuel Shadary, is facing a credible challenge from two opposition leaders: Felix Tshisekedi, president of Congo’s largest opposition party, and a former Exxon Mobil manager and businessman, Martin Fayulu.

In all, 21 candidates are running, including several other prominent Kabila critics, which many say risks diluting the opposition vote and boosting Shadary’s chances.

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