Democratic Republic Congo opposition candidate Martin Fayulu rejected a court ruling that his rival won a presidential election, declaring himself president in a move that could stoke further unrest.
“The Constitutional Court has just confirmed that it serves a dictatorial regime by validating false results and enabling a Constitutional coup d’etat,” he said in a statement.
The court confirmed Felix Tshisekedi’s presidential election win on Sunday, throwing out two challenges against it.
Second-placed Fayulu has accused both, Tshisekedi and DRCongo’s ruling party, of stitching up the poll.
He says the results were the product of a secret deal between Tshisekedi and outgoing President Joseph Kabila.
Kabila’s camp and Tshisekedi’s have denied making any such arrangement.
Provisional results in the election showed Tshisekedi winning with a slim margin over Fayulu.
But if Fayulu’s supporters reject the result, it could worsen unrest that’s already seen over 30 people killed.
The DRC’s Constitutional Court is widely seen as beholden to Kabila, who has been in power since his father was assassinated in 2001.
The election is meant to enable DRC’s first democratic transfer of power in almost six decades.
But independent monitors have flagged major flaws in the vote, including faulty voting machines and polling stations where many were unable to vote.
The Catholic Church has denounced the provisional result and the African Union has called for final results to be postponed, citing serious doubts about the election’s credibility.
On Friday, the DRC rejected that request.
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