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    DR CONGO : JOSEPH KABILA DECLARED WINNER OF THE COUNTRY'S PRESIDENTIAL POLL

    Joseph Kabila, the incumbent president of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has been declared the provisional winner of the country's presidential poll, the DRC election commission has announced.

    The provisional results were announced on Friday, after several days of unplanned delays.

    Kabila won 48.97 per cent of the 18.14 million ballots cast, with veteran opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi winning 32.3 per cent, election commission chief Daniel Ngoy Mulunda announced. Voter turnout was 58.8 per cent, he said.

    "These results are not a huge surprise. Preliminary results or partial results have been released by the election commission since last Friday, that really indicated that the incumbent Joseph Kabila had an unassailable, insurmountable lead in these elections," reported Al Jazeera's Yvonne Ndege from Kinshasa, the country's capital.

    The opposition had earlier rejected those partial results, and threatened "serious unrest" across the country if President Kabila was declared the winner, Ndege reported.

    A spokesman for Tshisekedi told the Reuters news agency that the result was "totally unacceptable".

    "It is a totally unacceptable result. You can just look around Kinshasa or the rest of the country to see how many
    people are against these results. The population is totally disoriented," Alexis Mutanda told Reuters, minutes after the
    election commission issued the results.

    Mutanda said that his party had not yet decided on its next move, but that it had "no faith" in the credibility of the country's Supreme Court, which is to ratify the results.

    In the tightly controlled pro-Kabila downtown neighborhood in Kinshasa, near the election commission, people hung out of balconies cheering after the results were released.

    Police in riot gear in trucks stood at attention.



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