News Brief
image of Congolese ballot via Monusco

Internet Shut Down in Democratic Republic of Congo Continues

Here are some updates on the contested election

The internet has been down in the Democratic Republic of Congo for three days now following a controversial voting process.

This year, President Joseph Kabila will be stepping down from office after 18 years in power. The presidential race between the new candidates Martin Fayulu and Felix Tshisekedi has been filled with controversy from the fire that destroyed voting machines earlier on in the elections. Following that incidence, BBC reports that 1.26 million voters were excluded from the voting process because of the ebola outbreak and logistical reasons, 20% of polling stations opened late, and the military was reported to be intimidating voters.



On Monday, the internet was shut down as voting ended. According to a representative from vodacom, the government ordered service providers to shut down the internet. The internet was shut down in Kinshasa, Goma, and Lubumbashi and might be down until the results come out at the end of the week.

Commenting on why this internet shutdown was necessary, the senior adviser to President Kabila, Barnabé Kikaya bin Karubi said that the government wanted to stop any fake results from circulating and inciting unrest. "That could lead us straight toward chaos," he concluded.

Alongside an internet shutdown, text messaging has been difficult for most people and the censorship against the media has escalated. The signal for Radio France Internationale (R.F.I.), a news source that was tracking the election, is also down. On Monday, the government had banned the main correspondent for RFI Florence Morice from commenting on the election after accusing her of putting out fake results. The ongoing censorship has caused many people to doubt the credibility of the elections.

The results of the election are scheduled to be revealed on January 6.



News Brief
Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images.

43 World Health Organisation Experts To Land in South Africa as Coronavirus Infection Rates Peak

South Africa receives help from WHO experts who are flying into the country to help combat possible second spike of infections.

Health Minister Dr. Zweli Mkhize has announced that a rescue team of 43 WHO pandemic experts will arrive in South Africa. Coronavirus infection rates in the country have reached over half a million with deaths almost at 10 000. The announcement comes in the wake of ongoing investigations of a PPE corruption scandal that implicates government officials. Health workers are at a higher risk of contracting the virus due to shortage of crucial PPE that is used to prevent the transmission from patients.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Raoul Peck’s, 'I Am Not Your Negro,' Is a Must-Watch In the Wake of George Floyd’s Murder

Revisiting James Baldwin's writing from decades past, this documentary shows just how little the Black experience in the US has changed.