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Kabila still pulling strings in DR Congo

Kabila and Tshesekedi at the handover ceremony

It is four months since Joseph Kabila handed over office as President of DR Congo to Félix Antoine Tshisekedi but the former president is still a major decision maker pulling the levers of power in Africa’s second largest country.

| The Independent | Kabila’s backed coalition Common Front for Congo (FCC) has 342 of the parliament’s 485 seats which gives him legislative control over Tshisekedi’s executive branch. However Tshisekedi’s appointment of Prof Sylvestre Ilunkamba Ilunga, a Kabila ally, as the prime minister effectively puts Kabila in charge of government control.

Observers were watching the scene to see whether the president could defy his successor and appoint a prime minister of his choice but the new head of state chose to honour a power sharing agreement the two had months earlier in the presidential transition. Kabila’s coalition will also negotiate cabinet appointments. It is widely believed Kabila’s state machinery rigged the December polls in favour of Tshisekedi as a deal was already in the works.

The appointment left the opposition in DR Congo in more disarray in spite of what was touted as the first democratic transfer of power in the country’s history.


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