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Vital Kamerhe Denies Calling for Elections to Be Annuled

Forum des As | Published on December 01, 2011
Vital Kamerhe, president of the Union for the Congolese nation (UNC)
Presidential candidate Vital Kamerhe has denied having called for the November 28 presidential and parliamentary elections in DR Congo to be annulled.

“As of today, I have not signed a joint press release asking for the elections to be annulled,” Mr. Kamerhe said in a statement on Wednesday.

Media reports claimed on Tuesday that Mr. Kamerhe and three other presidential candidates had called for Monday’s elections to be annulled.

The president of the Union for the Congolese Nation (UNC) asked instead the Independent National Electoral Commission to release the partial results of the elections as they are being tallied.

Mr. Kamerhe said that releasing the results before a final count would assure more “transparency” and avoid “tempering in compilation centers.”
During a press conference on Wednesday in Kinshasa, Mr. Kamerhe warned that there was a “risk” that unofficial partial results claiming a victory by one of the candidates may  lead their supporters to violence if the official results released next week are different.

Asked if he had cut contacts with Etienne Tshisekedi after negotiations on a joint opposition candidacy failed, Mr. Kamerhe replied “Not at all.”

“I am president of a political party, as is Etienne Tshisekedi. I rejected the famous joint candidacy of the opposition in favor of the strategy of encirclement. If I had abandoned in favor of Etienne Tshisekedi, it would have meant opening the way for an easy victory for Joseph Kabila in the east.”

Asked if he would agree to join a unity government if incumbent President Joseph Kabila wins, Mr. Kamerhe said that he was pleased that Mr. Kabila said he was open to the idea if he wins.

“The UNC is a political party with structures. It is not up to me to give the position of my party at this stage. When the moment comes, the party will decide.”

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