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Elections update: 10pm (Bukavu)

Voting has wrapped up in many places in the eastern Congo, but continues in some areas and in many places in the West.

Some more information, with the caveat that I have not been able to verify all incidents, so they should be taken a grain of salt.

  • Kinshasa, which has been mostly calm today, saw some problems this evening as Tshisekedi prepared to vote. He was tailed by a crowd of supporters as the police blocked his path several times in Limete as he tried to get to a polling station. According to AFP photographers, police blocked him access to a station later. Apparently he finally voted and returned home;
  • Also in Kinshasa, UDPS supporters clashed with police in Bandal (at the school Joyeux Lutins) after they claimed they weren’t able to vote;
  • Across the country, thousands of people couldn’t find their names on the voters’ lists – the election commission said they could vote anywhere in the electoral district where they registered, but many don’t seem to know this and are protesting. This is the situation, for example, in Matete and Kingabwa in Kinshasa;
  • More allegations have surfaced of pre-marked ballots in favor of a presidential candidate, including in Songololo (Bas-Congo) and Idiofa (Bandundu);
  • In North Kivu, an angry crowd destroyed a voting station at Kasindi-Lubiliha, accusing Gen Kakolele (former rebel commander, now close to Kabila) of fraud. Five people have allegedly been arrested;
  • In Mwenga (South Kivu) six polling stations were not able to open on the Itombwe plateau due to Banyamulenge soldiers’ interference;
  • The president of the voting station in Kalima (Maniema) was arrested due to fraud, as he was discovered with ballots in his private possession on the evening before the vote;
  • Around 100 voting stations were not able to open in Kasai Occidential, including some 43 that were burned down;
  • In South Kivu, fighting broke out between different ethnic communities in Kalehe as Hutu Kabila supporters clashes with Kamerhe supporters from Shi and Havu communities (not clear when this took place), leaving at least seven people injured;

I just heard that the election commission has now extended voting for one more day.

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