Friday, December 9, 2016

Final Negotiations Between Majority And Opposition Under The Aegis Of The Church

In DRC, final negotiations began on Thursday, December 8, between majority and opposition under the umbrella of the Catholic Church. The goal is to find a solution to the ongoing political crisis while December 19 marks the end of the second and final term of Joseph Kabila without that elections have been held.
In October, a political agreement was reached between the government and a section of the opposition. But the heavyweights of the opposition rejected the Episcopal Commission that Congo has offered to give political actors around the same table.

"Build bridges, not walls." This formula of Pope Francis mentioned at the opening of the new talks sums up the issue. Because the climate of mistrust between the majority and the opposition has been rising in recent months, with each side accusing the other of brinkmanship.

Representatives of power and the historical opposition in DRC agree to sit on a round table is, therefore, an important first step. But it will go further, also reconcile the positions of each other. "  The rigid requirements must yield to the concession and compromise  ," warned Archbishop Marcel Utembi, president of the Congolese Episcopal Church, in his speech.

The challenge for the authority is to convince the opposition to accept a transition with Joseph Kabila to the organization of the forthcoming elections. Disclaimer as to any call for protests on 19 December.

The opposition is seeking a binding date for holding the elections. She also wished that the 18-month deadline passed last October is shortened to organize presidential end 2017.

The Congolese church hopes to reach a final agreement by next Wednesday 14 December. It relies on these negotiations in closed session with 30 delegates to go to the essentials. Because the room for maneuver is very small and the time counted for a consensus before the end of the mandate of Joseph Kabila in 10 days.

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