Voting machines raise worries in Congo ahead of elections

June 21, 2018 - 5:03 am

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — Congo's government is moving forward with plans to use electronic voting machines in this year's highly anticipated presidential election despite watchdog groups' warnings that transparency and credibility could suffer.

The vast, mineral-rich nation is under pressure to ensure a fair election in December amid concerns that President Joseph Kabila, in power since 2001, will try to run again. He has remained after his mandate ended in late 2016 as the election has been delayed.

As candidates face an August deadline to declare, voting machines have become a focus of growing concern that the vote could be manipulated.

They threaten "the overall credibility of Congo's electoral process," says a new report by The Sentry, an investigative group focusing on the financial networks behind conflicts in Africa.

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