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In remote eastern Congo, consensus is that upcoming election won't be fair

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Congolese will go to the polls on Monday, Nov. 28, in the country’s second democratic elections since independence. For the first time the presidential and parliamentary vote will be combined in the same election. Elections themselves are logistically difficult – Congo is home to over 71 million people, from about 450 tribes, spread over a vast country the size of Western Europe.

Congo is also known for its impressive natural resource wealth, yet it is as rich in resources as it is in atrocities given the fact that it has been ravaged by successive wars for more than 15 years. The province of South Kivu and its capital city, Bukavu, is one of the worst conflict-affected areas in eastern Congo. In light of the conflict and hardship in the East, I asked myself: Do the upcoming elections matter here?

Across the country and here in South Kivu the campaign is the subject of countless conversations among the locals. I spent some time walking around in town to capture the sentiments of people.

When asked about local perspectives of the upcoming elections, a community leader, a note of desperation in his voice, said:

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