Opposition's Tshisekedi wins delayed DR Congo presidential poll

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Congo's decision to declare Felix Tshisekedi as the official victor of its presidential election, a result at odds with evidence from polls and independent election observers, is facing a growing tide of skepticism both inside and outside the country.

Although he holds a Belgian diploma in marketing and communication, he has had little political or managerial experience with some detractors even suggesting his diploma is not valid.

It is an accusation Mr Tshisekedi's team denies. Joseph took over in 2001 when Laurent was assassinated.

As a young adult, Felix Tshisekedi was forced to live in internal exile in his father's native Kasai province until the then-government of former dictator Mobutu Sese Seko allowed him to leave for Belgium in 1985.

Speaking to cheering supporters at his campaign headquarters, Tshisekedi paid his respects to outgoing President Joseph Kabila, whom he called "an important political partner", and promised to rule for all Congo's 80 million people.

These elections were seen by many as a hypothesis that the DRC had a first transition of peaceful power since its independence in 1960.

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Tshisekedi, 55, hopes the elections will hand him the presidential prize that eluded his late father Etienne, who founded the DRC's mainstream opposition party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), in 1982.

"It really seems that the declared results... are not consistent with the true results", Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told CNews television.

The United Nations has warned against any resort to violence.

Fayulu supporters say Kabila made a deal with Tshisekedi after Kabila's own hand-picked candidate, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, failed to gain enough support to be a credible victor.

Mr Tshisekedi, who received 38 per cent of the vote according to the electoral commission's results, had not been widely considered the leading candidate and is relatively untested. The influential catholic church, which posted 40,000 election observers, also said the result did not match its findings.

"The results have nothing to do with the truth of the ballot box", he told RFI, and called on observers of the December 30 vote to publish the real results.

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Careful statements by the worldwide community did not congratulate Tshisekedi, merely taking note of official results and urging peace and stability in a country with little of it. Observers appeared to be watching for the reactions of Fayulu's supporters. "They have stolen the Congolese people's victory and the people will never accept that".

Tshisekedi "owes his ascendancy to power to Kabila's control of the electoral commission", and in exchange, Kabila would look for immunity from any prosecution or asset seizure after handing over power, Besseling said.

"Mr Kabila can not stay and make an arrangement with someone who will not have any power".

The election's supervisors had faced mounting pressure at home and overseas to publish the results of the December 30 poll after repeated delays stoked fears for the giant country's stability.

The independent electoral commission is expected to release detailed results on January 15 and the new president will be sworn in three days later.

This is a delicate way of describing the apprehension over bloody violence in the streets, as occurred in the DRC's 2006 and 2011 elections.

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