img_9062In a statement issued on 22 September 2016, leaders of various religious groups gave their stance on the two days of violence that erupted in the DRC on 19 and 20 September 2016.

The leader of the Congo Protestant Church, Bishop Marini Bodo, indicated “religious leaders condemn the acts of violence that have affected our families and destroy the economic and social fabric of our country”.

Alluding to the dialogue, he added “religious leaders call on all fellow Congolese involved in the dialogue unfolding at the Cité de l’Union Africaine to continue working so as to reach a consensus that guarantees a peaceful electoral environment for our country”.

They further urged political stakeholders boycotting the dialogue to “avail their contribution in arriving to adequate solutions to the common issues facing our country”.

It is worth mentioning the Catholic Church did not endorse the statement. It suspended its participation in the dialogue, making its return contingent upon a clear date for the presidential election being set and president Kabila vowing not to run for that election.

The two days of violence in Kinshasa and other major cities have claimed 32 lives, according to the official toll given by the Congolese Police (PNC). The opposition, however, says 100 people were killed.