Contested election could lead to widespread violence, warns a coalition of 41 NGOs

Kinshasa, 28 October 2011 – The national election campaign officially starts today in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), exactly one month ahead of historic presidential and legislative elections, scheduled for November 28 2011. 41 humanitarian and human rights organizations have expressed concern about the high political tension and deteriorating security situation. They have called upon all Congolese and international actors involved to take urgent measures to prevent electoral violence, better protect civilians and ensure credible, free and fair elections.

“This election in Congo is the ultimate test. Is Congo on course to consolidate its fledging democracy or return to a state of widespread instability, insecurity and violence? Second elections are vital to consolidate democratic peace gains in the country, complete a full electoral cycle and strengthen democratic institutions”, said Thierry Vircoulon, Central Africa Director at the International Crisis Group (ICG). Read the full press release here