DR Congo court confirms Tshisekedi’s poll victory

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Felix Tshisekedi

The Constitutional Court in the Democratic Republic of Congo has rejected two legal challenges to the provisional results of a contested presidential election last month and declared President Félix Tshisekedi the final winner.

Mr Tshisekedi got 73.47% of the vote, the court said.

The court validated the incumbent’s victory despite independent observers’ reports of widespread irregularities during the 20 December vote.

The poll was also marred by widespread logistical problems, which the opposition said were part of a deliberate plan to rig the results in favour of Mr Tshisekedi.

Only one opposition contender out of eighteen took the matter to court. Others including the runner-up, Moïse Katumbi, refused to mount a legal challenge after questioning the independence of the judiciary.

The Constitutional Court ruled on Tuesday that the reported irregularities could not have impacted election results because there was such a big gap between the incumbent and Mr Katumbi, who won around 18% of votes.

The verdict paves the way for Mr Tshisekedi’s swearing in for a second term on 20 January.

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