On Tshisekedi Being Ruled the Winner of the DRC’s Election
Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), immediate past chairman of the House Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement on Monday on a constitutional court of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) ruling that Felix Tshisekedi is the victor in the recent election:
“Unfortunately, calls for a free and fair election in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have gone unheeded by the regime of Joseph Kabila. Independent observers have provided sufficient evidence to show that Martin Fayulu won the election, yet due to an apparent corrupt bargain between Kabila and runner-up Felix Tshisekedi, Tshisekedi is being proclaimed the victor, ratified by a constitutional court packed by Kabila.
“All parties should heed the statement of the African Union that calls for ‘the suspension of the proclamation of the final results of the elections.’ If Tshisekedi is installed this week notwithstanding the tainted results, the United States should not hesitate to apply visa denials, sanctions and other tools against those complicit in election fraud.
“Further, it is important that any protests remain peaceful and that aggrieved parties refrain from violence. All sides must ensure that their actions do not compound the suffering of the Congolese people.”