As Presidential campaigns heat up in neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, candidate Matata Ponyo has withdrawn his candidature and rallied behind Moïse Katumbi.
Matata Ponyo a former Prime Minister is a flag bearer of the political party Leadership and Governance for Development (LGD). His withdrawal from the race on Sunday has suprised so many.
The Presidential elections are scheduled to take place on December 20.
Moïse Katumbi is a former governor of Katanga and president of the Ensemble pour la République party.
“I had decided to be a candidate for the presidential election on December 20, the campaign for which begins today. My main objective was to free our nation from this infernal spiral in which the Congolese have been trapped for too long,” he said.
Matata Ponyo explained that he carries within him “the skills and values” necessary to restore the greatness of the DRC, “as was the case during his time as Prime Minister between 2012 and 2016”.
He however, said he decided support Moïse Katumbi in order to form a common force which will “counteract the electoral fraud carried out by the incumbent President Felix Tshisekedi camp”.
“In an effort to maintain power at all costs, the regime in place has intelligently developed a complex system of massive electoral fraud and corruption,” Ponyo said.
He explained that in order to maximize votes and above all to thwart the maneuver of power, it is important to merge our opposition as the best strategy possible.
“Moïse Katumbi Chapwe is the candidate who can lead the opposition ticket represented by four major parties and groups that took part in these meetings,” Matata said.
Matata Ponyo insisted on the fact that his withdrawal from the presidential race responds to the deep aspiration of the Congolese people who “want at all costs for the regime to change”.
“The will of the people is stronger than mine. The deep aspiration of the people must transcend our egos and our personal ambitions,” he said.
Matata Ponyo has also urged the two other participants in the Pretoria work – Delly Sessanga and Denis Mukwege – as well as all the Presidential candidates “concerned about “future of the DRC” and its people to join the president of Ensemble pour la République.