-January 12, 2019, news
As the debate for who won the DR Congo presidential poll continue to attract world attention and the influence of the Catholic church not tactically suspecting a foul play on the election results which declared. Felix Tshisekedi as the winner. However, this has made the church to be suspicious of the country electoral body manipulating the results. However, observers were prohibited by law from releasing their findings before the electoral commission had announced the official results. It is not clear whether the law applies after the official announcement. But the Catholic Church knows from the experience of past crackdowns that leading people on to the streets can have tragic consequences – and the ruling coalition has warned against “preparing the population for insurrection”.
Séverine Autesserre, author of the book The Trouble with Congo, says the Congolese police have been brutal in their dealings with protesters in the past. She told the BBC that if the Church, whose followers make up about 40% of the country’s 80 million population, were to announce that Mr Fayulu had won – the consequences could be dire. “You would have huge, violent protests. You would have riots,” she told the BBC.”The police would crackdown on the protesters and that would result in a lot of deaths. “Moreover, on Friday, Catholic bishops urged the UN Security Council to put pressure on the Congolese electoral commission to publish the full results from each polling station.
DR-CONGO -Since the declaration of Mr. Felix Tshisekedi as the provisional winner of presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a historic victory for an opposition leader, questions have been raised about the authenticity and the accuracy of the results amid accusations of a power-sharing deal with outgoing President Joseph Kabila.
Meanwhile, the electoral commission had said that Mr Tshisekedi got 38.5% of the vote on 30 December, compared to 34.7% for Martin Fayulu, another opposition figure. Ruling coalition candidate Emmanuel Shuddery took 23.8%.Those raising doubts about the results include the French and Belgian governments and country’s influential Catholic Church.
The Catholic Church, through the National Episcopal Conference of Congo (Cenco), reported that the results, announced in the early hours of Thursday morning, did not match its findings.
But Cenco, which said it had 40,000 election observers who had visited all 75,000 polling stations, has not released its data. Three diplomats speaking anonymously to the Reuters news agency said the Church’s tallies showed that Mr Fayulu had won. Opinion polls always need to be treated with caution – even more so in a country where the political climate is volatile..
“The probability Tshisekedi could have scored 38% in a free election is less than 0.0000,” he wrote in an article for online magazine African Arguments, pointing to polling data by Berci and Ipsos for the Congo Research Group.
He said the data predicted: A 95% chance that Mr Tshisekedi would get somewhere between 21.3% and 25% of the vote. Mr Fayulu would have obtained between 39% and 43% of the vote Mr Shadary would get between 14% and 17.4%.
Mr Englebert acknowledged that opinion polls could be wrong, saying the official results could be correct if turnout was as high as 90% in Mr Tshisekedi’s strongholds and really low, around 30%, in Mr Fayulu’s strongholds. But he argued that this was extremely unlikely.
Academic Nic Cheeseman, who has written a book on how to do just this, told the BBC that if the election was rigged it probably happened during the collation of the results. His words
“It’s very easy. You can have a small number of people in a central office who release the result. “You can have one person just adding a 1,000 votes to one candidate and subtracting 1,000 from another on an Excel spreadsheet.”He further that said the risk of fraud was normally avoided by observers tabulating the results in parallel. That did take place, but we do not have the data.
Throughout the election campaign, the use of electronic voting machines was a major source of contention. Voters used the tablet-like devices to select candidates, and then it printed their ballot paper with their choices. The machines were also meant to keep an electronic tally to help verify the results. But Mr Englebert says that in the days following the vote, election observers reported that some of these machines went missing
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