Congo riot police deploy at electoral commission ahead of vote result

Congolese policemen drive past Congo's Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) headquarters in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.

Congolese policemen drive past Congo's Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) headquarters in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.

Reuters

KINSHASA - Riot police have been deployed at the electoral commission headquarters in Kinshasa on Wednesday amid fears of a disputed result in a Democratic Republic of Congo presidential election marked by accusations of vote fraud.

The tally could be announced later in the day after the commission met all night and into the morning.

Police also took up positions along the city's main boulevard, as Congolese fretted about possible violence amid suspicions that the government was negotiating a power-sharing deal with one opposition candidate.

The commission (CENI) announced on Tuesday evening it had initiated "a series of evaluation meetings and deliberations, at the end of which it will proceed to the publication of provisional results from the presidential election".

A CENI source and a diplomat said they expected results to be announced later on Wednesday.

READ: Congo braces for election results after commission meets overnight

Another diplomat, however, said that not all the vote tallying had been completed and that the announcement might have to wait until Thursday.

Kinshasa residents went about their normal activities, but some parents kept their children home from school.

People were back on the streets too in the eastern city of Goma, which were deserted on Tuesday evening after a rumour spread that the announcement was imminent.

Even so, some Congolese said they were gearing up for potential unrest.

"Everyone ... voted against the government in place. We are preparing fully to demand victory if it is stolen from us," said Augustin Bujiriri, a 25-year-old student in Goma.

The results were originally due last Sunday but were postponed due to delays tallying the vote.

Source
Reuters