Today 9th January 2019, H.E. President Cyril Ramaphosa received H.E. President Lungu of the Republic of Zambia and the SADC Chairperson for the Organ on Politics, Defense, and Security Cooperation who is on a working visit to South Africa.

During their meeting, the two Presidents were briefed by the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Zambia, Hon. Joseph Malanj who led the SADC Electoral Observer Mission (SEOM) during elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Presidents Ramaphosa and Lungu reiterated comments made by SEOM that considering the number of voters, the vast area had to be covered and the new technology implemented by the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), the elections were generally peaceful and the right to vote was protected.

The two Presidents commended MONUSCO and the DRC security forces for supporting CENI in ensuring that the people vote in a peaceful and secure environment.

Presidents Ramaphosa and Lungu have called on CENI to speedily finalise the vote tabulation and release the election results in order to maintain the credibility of elections. The two Presidents underscored that the delay in releasing the results of the elections can lead to suspicions and compromise peace and stability of the country.

The two Presidents also called on all the political parties and the generality of Congolese to remain calm and exercise total restraint while waiting for CENI a constitutionally mandated authority to release the final results.

The two Presidents agreed to monitor the situation in DRC and committed SADC's support and solidarity.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: Department of International Relations and Cooperation.