DRC opposition MP criticises lack of progress towards national dialogue

February 15, 2016 OPINION/NEWS

By

Darell Maurice

During a press conference in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s capital city Kinshasa, MP Steve Mbikayi, national president of the Labor Party and spokesman of the New Political and Social Class (NCPS), stated a need for the rapid establishment of the Preparatory Committee for a inclusive national dialogue, lamenting the delay in convening the actual dialogue.

Mbikayi, the elected member of parliament in the constituency of Tshangu in Kinshasa, believes it is high time to act before the country deteriorates further. It is very important for the establishment of the Preparatory Committee to define the terms of reference of the dialogue. A Preparatory Committee will also be responsible for reviewing each other’s responses to gain a broad support. To do so, the Preparatory Committee should establish direct contacts with the anti-dialogue parties. Unless there is a last-minute change, Edem Kodjo, the envoy of Nkosazana Zuma, was due to meet Mbikayi.

Steve Mbikayi is concerned that the forces opposed to the holding of a dialogue to resolve the election crisis are standing their ground, regardless of the future of the nation. Asked whether the dialogue can be held without the participation of the UDPSEtienne Tshisekedi, Mbikayi stated:  It would be madness on my part, if I refuse to recognize the merits of Tshisekedi. I know he has a great influence. He has more experience than me. He has a career and more political experience than me. But I think we can not paralyze an entire nation to meet someone. In 2006, the UDPS did not take part in elections. The Congolese nation continued to live. I believe that the dialogue will be without Tshisekedi as the 2006 elections.” Further, Steve Mbikayi neverless recognized the UDPS as important and the dynamics of the opposition that take part in the forum will decide the future of the country.

However, Steve Mbikayi was surprised that as an independent country, we have to make a call to the UN Secretary General to convene a future political dialogue. According to him, it is necessary that we respect the independence of the country: “The DRC is a great nation. I think we are mature enough to decide the fate of our country,” he said.

Steve Mbikayi also reaffirmed his party’s commitment to continue pushing for a transition before the elections. He stressed moreover that no one is more Congolese than the other. He is convinced that this is the only way to get the good organization élections. Explaining the contours of the transition it offers, Mbikayi stated: ” When we say we want a transition that will be led by the opposition, it means we are suggesting a compromise of cohabitation. We mean, in other words, that the Opposition who, consensus will be the majority in Parliament, will head the government because in a transition, power belongs to no one.” The transition will be based on a constitutional convention.

He added that for a fair and democratic electoral process during the transition, CENI needs to be restructured. The Constitutional Court and the territorial, totally devoted to the cause of the Presidentialal Majority, will also need to be restructured.

With regard to motivation for a dialogue, Steve Mbikayi recalled that the mandate of the President of the Republic expires in 2016. This means that after 2016, there will be a vacuum. This is exactly the opportunity to decide on action, especially since everyone knows that there will be no elections within the constitutional deadlines, given the delay so far accumulated by the Independent National Electoral Commission.

Steve Mbikayi does make comments regarding his political opponents on their proposals. “They can all tell me, I remain what I am. That’s good to insult and call me evil, but what do they offer in return? I think and I act. I await the ideas contrary to mine. I am a leader. It is normal that when I speak, people can criticize. But I promise you that people will follow me with my idea of ??transition,” he concluded.

 

 

 

 

 

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Darell Maurice

Darell Maurice is a Journalist based in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s capital city Kinshasa and works for Canal7kintv. He also blogs here.

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