DR Congo: preparing for the elections

CEPAS (Centre d’Etudes pour l’Action Sociale), the Kinshasa-based Jesuit social centre, has recently released a special issue of Congo-Afrique, the centre?s bimonthly magazine, on the upcoming elections in DR Congo in June, the first free elections in 45 years. The polls, which, according the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, will pose ?major logistical challenges if not nightmares?, are to end a power-sharing period after five years of civil war. « Elections and good governance in DR Congo », the outcome of a seminar organised by CEPAS in February 2006, examines the main challenges of the election laws, political stability, good governance and decentralisation, and women?s role in participative democracy. According to a BBC source, more than 1,000 people are estimated to be still dying each day in the country, where fighting continues — particularly in the east. Hostilities between rival militias and government troops still force hundreds of thousands of displaced people from their homes. For further information, contact Fr Ghislain Tshikendwa SJ at [email protected] or Fr Ferdinand Muhigirwa [email protected]