Congolese Opposition Leader Confirms He Will Run For The Presidency

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Democratic Republic of Congo opposition leader Martin Fayulu confirmed on Saturday that he will submit his candidacy for the December presidential election.

The 66-year-old former Exxon Mobil executive came second to Tshisekedi in the contentious 2018 election.

Fayulu’s party, the Engagement for Citizenship and Development party, the African Union and Congo’s influential Catholic Church questioned the outcome and Fayulu challenged the results in court.

However, since then, he has remained a strong opponent of Tshisekedi’s presidency, threatening to boycott the Dec. 20 ballot in protest at alleged fraud linked to the voter list – a decision he now says would have played into his opponents hands.

“Many preferred for me to stay away, the better to cheat,” he told a news conference in the capital Kinshasa, saying he would formally register his candidacy with the election commission on Oct. 4.

In an effort to allow greater scrutiny, his party is pushing for election results to be announced by polling station unlike the 2018 vote, which pre-election polls had predicted Fayulu would win by a landslide.

“We will continue to fight for transparency in the elections, and if we don’t have transparency in the electoral register, we will have it in the monitoring of the elections,” Fayulu said.