Catholic Bishop in DR Congo Cautions Political Candidates against Self-seeking Agenda

Bishop Melchisedec Sikuli Paluku of the Catholic Diocese of Butembo-Beni in DR Congo. Credit: Radio Moto

Bishop Melchisedec Sikuli Paluku of the Catholic Diocese of Butembo-Beni in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has cautioned political candidates in the December 20 general elections against self-seeking agenda.

In his July 16 homily at Holy Spirit Parish Oïcha of Butembo-Beni Diocese, Bishop Paluku said, “Let's not look at politics as a company that is looking for employees, who will go there just for their interests.”

The Congolese Catholic Bishop added, “Rather, true politics is for those who have demonstrated that they can do better.”

“If someone feels they can represent us better, that's fine. But he can start step by step,” Bishop Paluku further said, adding, “Let's not rush into it. If you become a mayor and a good leader, tomorrow everyone can say that you can be a provincial or national parliamentarian.”

On December 20, eligible voters in DRC are to participate in the election of the country’s President, 500 members of the National Assembly, members of the 26 Provincial Assemblies, and, for the first time under the new constitution, members of some 300 Municipal Councils.


In his July 16 homily, Bishop Paluku called on the people of God in DRC to wake up from their slumber “to make a good choice in the December 2023 elections.”

“Our people must choose men and women who are capable of fighting to bring peace back to the region, which has long been shaken by violence,” he said.

Earlier this month, Bishop Paluku appealed to the political leadership of the Central African nation to prioritize citizen’s welfare. 

“I can't say that this crowd I've just seen enjoys that well-being,” the Congolese Catholic Bishop lamented in his address at the conclusion of his pastoral visit to St. Conrad Kasindi Parish of his Episcopal See on July 5, and appealed, “Congolese authorities must ensure the welfare of the population.”

He added, “It's up to us Congolese to see to that. Corruption has become a system.”

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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.