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Mbeki: Situation in DRC 'is worrying, SADC must act'

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Mbeki: Situation in DRC 'is worrying, SADC must act'

Photo by Duane Daws
Former President Thabo Mbeki

24th August 2017

By: News24Wire

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Former President Thabo Mbeki has reportedly said that the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo is "worrying", adding that the Southern African Development Community (SADC) must act to avoid the killing of more people.

Mbeki said this just before the start of the African Leadership Forum meeting which he would be co-hosting with Tanzania’s former president Benjamin Mkapa in Boksburg.

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The meeting was set to run from August 24-25.

Mbeki's remarks came as the security situation in the DRC has become increasingly fraught after a December deadline for elections was missed and a peace agreement brokered by the Catholic Church in December fell apart.

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The opposition demanded that elections be held before the end of this year, but this was unlikely, particularly after a SADC summit over the weekend noted that there were still some consultations "aimed at finalising this matter".

'More people may very well die...'

The eNCA on Thursday quoted Mbeki as saying: "The situation in the Congo is very worrying and there has been an agreement that they would hold elections. I notice there was one of the SADC resolutions that they say they take note elections will not take place as planned and say the electoral commission something has gone wrong with regard to that."

"Part of what has happened in the Congo - more people may very well die if the matter is not resolved. SADC should act on that."

SADC was set to send a former head of state to the central African country as a special envoy to assess the situation.

President Jacob Zuma, who assumed the SADC chairpersonship at the weekend's summit, said in his closing address on Sunday that the summit had urged the DRC's Independent National Electoral Commission to publicise the revised electoral calendar.

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