A coalition government was formed in August 2019, bringing together President Tshisekedi’s Direction for Change party (CACH) and the Common Front for Congo (FCC) of the long-time President Joseph Kabila, the two parties sharing 23 and 42 members of the executive respectively.
Cardinal Ambongo’s June 30 criticism of DRC’s coalition government echo those of other Catholic Church leaders three months ago.
In March, Bishops in DRC lamented over the coalition saying, “it is unacceptable that the country should be taken hostage by an agreement, which moreover, is occultic.”
In his June 30 message during Holy Mass, Cardinal Ambongo, a member of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, regretted the poor working relationship in President Tshisekedi-led administration saying, “Government action is completely paralyzed and the legitimate service to be rendered to the population is being sacrificed” as result of these divisions, adding that “the people have been abandoned.”
“As long as this coalition is there, there is nothing to expect from our Government,” the Church leader said and lamented, “This is unacceptable.”
Addressing the controversy surrounding the selection of members of the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), Cardinal Ambongo noted that “there are relentless efforts of the current parliamentary majority to get their hands on the CENI and the Magistracy.”
“These are practices that can never be tolerated,” the Congolese Cardinal said and called on “Christians of the Catholic and Protestant churches to put themselves in good order to block any plans by the government to choose the leaders of the CENI.”
He went on to say, “The coming days will be difficult. I would like to ask the people to be ready. When the time comes, when they insist on passing these laws and these people at the head of CENI, they will have to find us on their path.”
“Therefore, on the occasion of the celebration of the independence of our country, I launch this appeal to all our people, to the Civil Society, to the Catholic Church, which is already in the marching order, to the Protestant Church to rise up, to straighten the front to block these desires which have a sole objective to protect the partisan interests of those who do not want a just system,” Cardinal Ambongo said.
Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.
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