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SADC urges DRC unity government, vote recount

Kinshasa, Tuesday

An African regional bloc on Sunday called for a unity government in Democratic Republic of Congo following disputed presidential elections, while also urging a recount of the ballots.

Southern African Development Community (SADC) said leaders should agree to a negotiated settlement after opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi was declared winner of the December 30 poll, to widespread surprise.

Another opposition candidate and former oil executive, Martin Fayulu, had been seen as the clear frontrunner and has appealed to the Constitutional Court to annul the result and have a recount.

It had been hoped the vote to replace long-time President Joseph Kabila would see the first peaceful transition of power in DRC since independence in 1960. But sporadic outbreaks of post-election violence has left observers concerned the unrest could escalate.

The electoral commission CENI last Wednesday announced that Tshisekedi had won, while Fayulu came second. Former interior minister Emmanuel Shadary—Kabila’s chosen successor—came third. -AFP

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