DIRCO commends DRC on credible elections

Sunday, January 13, 2019

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has commended the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for conducting free, fair and credible elections.

On Thursday the DRC electoral commission, CENI, released provisional results which declared opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi Tshilombo as the newly elected President.

Election candidate runner-up and opposition leader Martin Fayulu is contesting the election results and has appealed to the DRC’s Constitutional Court to cancel the provisional result.

In light of these developments, Sisulu commended the people of the DRC for conducting credible elections.

She also commended Fayulu for following the appropriate legal steps to challenge what he believes to be an incorrect result.

“We would like to see an end to what has been going on. We believe that we are on the precipice of a new dawn for the country. Whatever the outcome of the Constitutional Court in relation to Fayulu, ultimately we want to see peace,” said Sisulu.

The Minister said while the Southern African Development (SADC) Observer Mission is due to release its final report on the DRC elections, its preliminary report indicates that the elections were fair and credible.

Commenting on this landmark election, Sisulu said the fact that former DRC President Joseph Kabila did not run for the presidential elections is indicative of how far the country has come.

The Minister made the remarks at a media briefing on recent international developments, including the Madagascar elections, the UN Security Council agenda and upcoming international engagements for South Africa.

Sisulu congratulated the newly elected President of Madagascar Andry Rajoelina for winning the election.

Detention of SA citizen in Mozambique

On the detention of South African national Andre Mayer Hanekom on terror-related charges in Mozambique, Sisulu said her department is in talks with the neighbouring country and Hanekom to offer the necessary consular assistance.

Furthermore, Sisulu said President Cyril Ramaphosa is set to travel to Mozambique on 14 January 2019 to engage on various issues.

Among the issues to be discussed is the detention of Hanekom and the arrest of former Mozambique Finance Minister Manuel Chang in South Africa.

SA to punt African issues at UNSC

With South Africa having taken up its non-permanent seat at the UN Security Council (UNSC) as of 1 January 2019, Sisulu said Pretoria will aim to represent Africa at the UNSC.

“We will do our best to represent Africa at the council. We would like to see the UNSC restructure itself so we have regional representatives. We believe that Africa needs to be there to solve those problems that affect our continent,” she said. – SAnews.gov.za