DRC – Déjà vu all over again

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, La Conscience reports, via RFI, that President Kabila has appointed a commission to evaluate various reforms to the 2006 constitution (available here in French). The existence of a commission has been denied by the DRC authorities.

According to the report, the commission is evaluating three proposals: the shelving of further decentralisation reforms, the proposition that the president should have a seat on the Higher Council of the Judiciary, and, wait for it, the idea that the president’s term should be extended to seven years and that term limits should be abolished.

This latter proposal is reminiscent of what seems to be a general trend in a lot of Central Asian, African and Latin American countries (in presidential regimes there).

Rather like the situation in Niger earlier this year, the idea of abolishing presidential term limits contradicts Art. 220 of the 2006 constitution, which explicitly indicates that term limits cannot be abolished by constitutional reform.

We know what happened in Niger. Let’s hope that the commission is indeed a fabrication, or that it decides not to address the issue of term limits.

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