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Moise Katumbi challenges Congo President Joseph Kabila to step down

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image captionMoise Katumbi, centre, is the owner of African football champions TP Mazembe

The owner of African's top football club has told the president of Democratic Republic of Congo to step down when his second term in office ends in December.

Moise Katumbi urged President Joseph Kabila to stick to the constitution.

Mr Katumbi has been nominated by seven opposition parties to be their presidential candidate in the elections expected in November.

Mr Kabila took power in 2001 after his father Laurent Kabila was assassinated.

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Mr Kabila has won two disputed elections since he took power in 2001, and is constitutionally barred from contesting the poll.

Violent protests erupted last year over fears that President Joseph Kabila was trying to delay polls.

If Mr Kabila stands down in December he "will go out as a great president who will be praised everywhere," Mr Katumbi told the BBC.

Who is Moise Katumbi?

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Moise Katumbi was governor of the south-eastern Katanga province for almost a decade.

In September last year he broke ties with the ruling party when he accused President Kabila, his former ally, of wanting to cling to power.

His popularity is partly down to his job as the president of a great source of Congolese pride - football club TP Mazembe.

They are Africa's reigning football champions, having won the African Champions League for the fifth time in November.

Mr Katumbi thanked the seven parties whic nominated him on Wednesday as their presidential candidate.

But he didn't confirm whether he would accept the nomination, instead saying he wants even more opposition parties to join the coalition.

"For now, I am continuing my consultations here in Europe for the unity of the opposition.

"I am also consulting all the forces to have a single opposition candidate," he said.

Related Topics

  • Joseph Kabila
  • Democratic Republic of Congo

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