Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo Besungu of Kinshasa Archdiocese encouraged the citizens of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to register for the elections to vote.
“It is a small gesture, but with huge consequences for the determination of the number of deputies per constituency. It is also an opportunity for each citizen to use his or her right to choose his or her government at the time of the elections,” said Cardinal Ambongo.
Cardinal Ambongo urged the people in DRC to raise awareness and invited them to register for the election.
The cardinal told Vatican News that "elections have always been a source of hope for the Congolese population for a real change in quality in the management of the country."
He said the Church had always engaged in civic and electoral education, especially by educating electoral observers, since "good elections can open up new prospects for our country and our people."
The upcoming General Elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo are scheduled for December 20, 2023.
Cardinal Ambongo went to the CENI (Independent Electoral Commission) on Tuesday for voting registration.
The center at Saint-Raphaël Catholic School opened for registrations on December 24, along with other centers in 10 regions of the country.
The Archbishop of Kinshasa expected that the candidates would be serious and present good social projects for the nation and its suffering people over three decades.
Cardinal Ambongo urged everyone not to lose hope and to plan their future responsibly because God will act in His time despite human imperfection.
The cardinal asserted that the Congolese people were enduring "extreme distress," suffering and starvation, and "killings in the eastern provinces where people are thrown into the streets, driven out of their homes and work" and also in the western part of Kwamouth.
Cardinal Ambongo worried about a "tendency to despoil the land" of dioceses, and religious congregations possessed before independence.
The Cardinal specified the case of a plot of land in Funa, earmarked for a basilica, the Grand Seminary John XXIII, and that of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Congo (CENCO) surrounding Lake Ma Vallée.
According to the cardinal, the Catholic Church is experiencing the same predation that ordinary citizens experience.
"Ordinary people are also having their land and concessions taken away from them, and they cannot defend themselves against this mafia, which creates a lot of frustration. In accordance with the Framework Agreement between the Holy See and the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Archdiocese has referred the matter to the authorities, who have given instructions to resolve the problem," Cardinal Ambongo said. - With inputs from Vatican News
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