By Aaron Ross | KINSHASA/
Two of the most popular radio stations in Democratic Republic of Congo were jammed on Tuesday for the fourth day in a row, drawing criticism of the government from the United States and opposition groups.
Radio France Internationale (RFI) and the U.N.-funded Radio Okapi have been unavailable since the morning of Nov. 5, hours before a banned protest against President Joseph Kabila’s plan to stay in power beyond the end of his mandate this year.
According to the Central African country’s constitution, Kabila is due to step down when his second mandate ends on December 19. His ruling coalition and some opposition members have agreed to delay the vote until April 2018, citing a lack of preparation, but the main opposition bloc rejects the accord.
The United States said in a statement late on Monday it was “deeply troubled” by the radio signal outages, which it called a “government infringement on press freedoms and the Congolese people’s access to information”.
“Press freedoms and the right to assemble peacefully are essential components of democracy,” the statement added.
SOURCE: News Now/Reuters News Online