Mende particularly thanked AU Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, head of the UN Mission for Stabilization of Congo (MONUSCO) Maman Sidikou as well as the leadership of the Congo National Episcopal Conference (CENCO) for supporting the political dialogue initiative.
“We are happy that everyone is supporting the initiative that will advance the electoral process. Good cooperation between stakeholders, including members of the political opposition, civil society, religious groups as well as international partners, will be important to guarantee an environment for peaceful and transparent elections,” he said.
He recalled that on Jan. 14, Madam Zuma issued a statement supporting the national dialogue in DR Congo “as the only means of overcoming numerous challenges facing the country, and consolidating unity and national cohesion.”
The AU later asked Edem Kodjo, former Togolese prime minister, to spearhead talks in Kinshasa aimed at launching the dialogue.
In December 2015, Ban Ki-moon encouraged Kabila and the DR Congo government to “multiply their contacts with all concerned political and social actors.”
On Jan. 4, officials of CENCO launched an appeal for dialogue and announced the formation of a special committee charged with monitoring different political parties.
In a recent speech to the nation, Kabila called for broader participation of the people in the national dialogue that he initiated in 2015 to guarantee a peaceful electoral cycle. Enditem