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SG/SM/18398-AFR/3518
31 December 2016

Secretary-General Hails Democratic Republic of Congo Political Agreement as ‘Significant Step’, Urging Concrete Measures to Prepare for Polls

The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

The Secretary-General welcomes the signing today in Kinshasa, by the opposition and the Majorité présidentielle, of a political agreement on the holding of elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and transitional arrangements leading up to the polls.

This long-awaited development builds on an initial agreement signed on 18 October between part of the opposition and the Majorité présidentielle.  It represents a significant step towards a peacefully managed transition, consistent with the democratic principles enshrined in the country’s constitution.

The Secretary-General commends all actors involved in this effort, including the leaders of the opposition and of the Majorité présidentielle, and the Conférence épiscopale nationale du Congo for leading the mediation.  He calls on them to abide by the agreement just signed.  He underscores the commitment of the United Nations to support its implementation, in line with resolution 2277 (2016).

Concrete steps must now be taken to prepare the ground for the holding of elections without further delay.  The update of the voter register must proceed in a timely fashion.  All political actors must work to ensure an environment conducive to free, fair and credible elections, including by refraining from violence.  The Secretary-General encourages the Government to redouble its efforts to uphold fundamental rights and freedoms, which are essential to a credible electoral process.

On his final day at the helm of the United Nations, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon wishes continued success to the people and the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in their efforts to achieve peace and stability.

For information media. Not an official record.