Martin Fayulu, who came second in the Democratic Republic of the Congo‘s presidential election last month, has appealed to the country’s Constitutional Court to cancel the provisional result.
“The request seeks the annulment of the result declaring Felix Tshisekedi president,” his lawyer Feli Ekombe told reporters outside the court on Saturday.
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“You can’t manufacture results behind closed doors,” Fayulu said in front of a crowd of his supporters.
“I am hoping that the constitutional court will call the electoral commission to recount the ballot papers. “They are false, fabricated, nothing to do with the truth. The truth has to come from the recount of the ballot paper.”
Tshisekedi’s victory shocked pollsters and was immediately disputed by the opposition and Western powers.
The influential Catholic Church also rejected the official result, based on tallies by its 40,000-strong observer team.
“The results as published do not match the data collected by our own observation mission,” Marcel Utembi, the head of the country’s National Episcopal Conference of Congo (CENCO) said.
“We have a recommendation: To publish as quickly as possible all the records and minutes from the counties and the polling stations to allow candidates to compare”.
‘All eyes on the court’
The DRC has been tense in recent days with rising violence across the country raising fears of a breakdown of law and order, similar to the violence that broke out in the central African country after the 2006 and 2011 elections.
There have been isolated incidents of post-election violence around the nation of 80 million people, and on Friday, police confronted opposition protesters in the eastern city of Goma, killing at least one person.
Al Jazeera’s Haru Mutasa, reporting from DRC capital Kinshasa, said judges were expected to meet early next week to go over the supposed evidence that claims Fayulu won the election.
“If the judges feel there is no case they will throw the matter out. Felix Tshisekedi will be declared the president-elect and will be sworn in on January 18.
“If that happens, some people fear Fayulu could tell his supporters to go onto the streets and there could be an of escalation violence. Not just in Kinshasa, but elsewhere around the country. So a lot of people are calling on the Congolese people to remain calm.
“But all eyes will be on the court when they do meet, and a lot of people will be wondering how independent they are going to be”.