Thousands poured out onto the streets of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) capital on Monday, days after five people were killed during demonstrations against the nomination of a new election commission chief.
According to a report by Africa News website, protesters converged on the Boulevard Lumumba, one of Kinshasa’s main thoroughfares, and marched alongside a vehicle carrying former rebel leader and opposition chief Jean-Pierre Bemba.
While police used tear gas to disperse people, some unidentified men in civilian clothes also hurled stones at the protesters, injuring several of them, the report said.
Police also cracked down on similar demonstrations in the eastern city of Bukavu and Kananga in central DRC, it added.
The protests started last week after the National Assembly, the lower house of the country’s Parliament, decided to appoint Ronsard Malonda as chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI).
Critics say Malonda – currently secretary general of the CENI – is an ally of former President Joseph Kabila and played a role in rigging previous polls in his favor.
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