"It's natural, tonight, to feel some disappointment. But tomorrow, we must move beyond it and work together to get our country moving again." These are words we often hear from losing candidates in the US elections, after the results have been publicized. As we are moving closer to the Congolese election, I wonder if a losing candidate would be capable of saying such words.
What is an election? An election is a formal decision making process by which the population chooses an individual to hold a public office. In simple terms, in less than 40 days, Congolese voters will select a new leader or give President Kabila another term.
At this moment, all candidates are presumed winners. Yes! All 11 Presidential candidates have high hopes to win the election on November 28th, but only one will indeed be proclaimed President.
Running a marathon will be the best way to describe this scenario. After months of preparation, diets, body conditionings you feel prepare to run and win until you meet a Kenyan who can run 5 times faster. Like in running, politics has its realities and the truth is that every presidential candidate should expect to win just as well as they should expect to lose.
All candidates including referees (MONUSCO; Church; Carter Centers; Independent observers etc.) should agree on the rules to be played by all, which will not change during the course of the race. As long as the rules agreed upon aren't and shouldn't be violated, then all candidates should expect one winner and 10 losers. A candidate should expect to be the winner, just like he should expect to be the loser.
The losers of this election will indeed be champions. They will be champion because they walk and talk like champions by respecting the electoral process and rules established by law; therefore setting positive attributes for future Congolese elections.
Congolese democracy is very fragile and at its infancy. We must have trust and hope on our leaders to make the best judgments for the benefits of all. We must also understand that in a democracy, the rules are set in a "vox pupuli" fashion, and we shall respect the outcomes of the elections as the voice of the people.
For the people! What system do we want? What values do we seek? We should condemn when we hear tough rhetoric about war if such and such person doesn't win. True Congolese are tired of fighting and wars. We have seen the cost of a war. Believe me! No money can pay what have been lost. We have seen the devastation war does to a country and its society. We have seen the horrific images of women and children being killed and raped like animals. We have seen the death toll of 6 million of our people. So please! I beg you my friends; I beg you countrymen; I beg you countrywomen. Do not talk to me about war. Instead, we all should play a part in identifying what we, as individuals, can do to help our country prosper.
All candidates should have an alternative plan for what would happen after Novermber28th, 2011. On the top of that alternative plan should be a pledge to respect and accept the official elections results deemed fair by all national and international organizations.
Come on people. We can do this. Let's show it to the world and put Congo on a new path.
Note: "It's natural, tonight, to feel some disappointment. But tomorrow, we must move beyond it and work together to get our country moving again." (John McCain Concession speech to Obama)
Loleka mission is for Congolese people to judge candidates by their merits and what they bring on the table to resolve Congo's issues. We are an intellectual democratic platform dedicated to elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo
and we present you the political candidates.