Voters in three Congolese cities known for being opposition strongholds will be excluded from presidential elections on security and health grounds, officials said, in a move that looks certain to inflame political tensions before Sunday’s ballot.
The national electoral commission (CENI) said an Ebola outbreak – the second-worst in history – was behind the postponement of voting until March in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo cities of Beni and Butembo and surrounding areas. It cited ethnic violence for the same delay in the western city of Yumbi.
The cities will only hold legislative and provincial elections, not presidential elections.
The election is meant to lead to the first democratic transfer of power in DRC and was originally scheduled to take place in 2016.
They have been repeatedly postponed since then, sparking violence in which security forces have killed dozens of people.
As Christians we pray without ceasing and we declare peace and stability in the cities and nations of the world and that the wisdom and Love of God supersedes evil at this time and that works of the enemy be thwarted and stopped, in the name of Jesus.