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DR Congo opposition party sacks 33 for joining parliament

By AFP

KINSHASA (AFP) - An opposition party in the Democratic Republic of Congo has dismissed 33 of its members for serving in parliament, even though the party chief had already declared their election void.

The November 28 presidential and legislative elections were marred by fraud claims, and the leader of the opposition Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), Etienne Tshisekedi, had dismissed the results.

"These are people have been declared elected by the CENI (National Independent Electoral Commission), and not by the polls," UDPS interim secretary general Raymnond Kahungu, told AFP.

UDPS became DR Congo's main opposition party with 41 elected members of parliament.

During a party meeting, "we noted that of the 41, there were just eight" who declared that they would not serve in parliament, said Kahungu.

The 33 who failed to declare likewise have been "struck off UDPS members' files."

Since then, "we have received several calls from some who said they will not serve," he said.

"We told them to write us to as it would have to be based on those documents that we may be able to reconsider the decision," added Kahungu.

The party had already excluded Timothee Kombo Nkisi after he accepted the post as the assembly's provisional president.

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