Monday, May 10, 2021

DR Congo Prime Minister Ilunga resigns after vote of no confidence | News Democratic Republic of Congo

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This decision allows President Tshisekedi to appoint his own prime minister supported by a new parliamentary majority.

The Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo has resigned, a decision that will allow President Félix Tshisekedi to appoint his own Prime Minister backed by a new parliamentary majority.

Prime Minister Sylvestre Ilunga Ilunkamba was constitutionally bound to resign after being censored by the National Assembly on Wednesday.

He is a close ally of former President Joseph Kabila, whose supporters have been locked in a power struggle with Tshisekedi since coming to power two years ago.

Presidency spokesman Giscard Kusema told AFP news agency that llunga “said he had learned the consequences of the developments in the political situation”.

Kusema said it was “too early” to say when Tshisekedi would appoint the next prime minister.

Ilunga, 73, was appointed by Tshisekedi in May 2019 as part of a power-sharing deal he and Kabila reached upon handing over the presidency – the first peaceful transition in DRC history.

Kabila’s decision to step down after 18 years in office paved the way for a December 2018 election which was controversially won by Tshisekedi, the son of a former opposition leader.

Brawl in Parliament

But on the same polling day, a strong pro-Kabila majority emerged in the National Assembly, preventing Tshisekedi from having a grip on all political levers of power.

He was forced to join a coalition – a leviathan of a government with 65 ministers, two-thirds of whom belonged to the pro-Kabila Common Front for Congo (FCC).

Tensions quickly escalated and came to light last year when Tshisekedi said his reform agenda was stalled.

On December 6, he announced the end of the coalition and said he planned to seek a new government backed by the National Assembly, a move that sparked brawls in parliament.

On Wednesday, a motion of censure against Ilunga and his government was approved by 367 deputies out of 377 present in the 500-seat legislature.

The “Sacred Union of the Nation” proposed by Tshisekedi now enjoys the support of 391 lawmakers, according to an envoy, Senator Modeste Bahati, who was appointed to try to forge a majority.



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