Kinshasa, September 30th, 2022 (CPA) – The Senate voted, on Thursday, at the People’s Palace, the bill extending the state of siege proclaimed since May 3rd, 2021 by presidential order on part of the national territory, namely Nord Kivu and Ituri.
Out of 76 senators who took part in the vote, for 109 elected members who make up the Upper House of Parliament, 67 voted yes, 7 no and two members abstained. The text of the law consisting of three articles will be transmitted to the Head of State for promulgation.
The National Assembly voted Tuesday the same text of law, of which elements were not modified by the plenary.
Senator Bikenge however noted that the element on the siege of Bunagana city was not mentioned, the author having only mentioned armed groups.
By correspondence addressed to Parliament, the Head of State, Felix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo, justified to both chambers the merits of the continuation of operations by the National Defence Forces.
Adoption in the Senate of the calendar for the September 2022 session
In addition, on the same day, the Senate adopted, without debate, at the People’s Palace, the draft timetable for the September 2022 session as well as the distribution of matters in committees, during a plenary session chaired by Prof Modeste Bahati Lukwebo, President of the Upper House of Parliament.
This calendar, which remains open, includes in particular the verification of the mandates, by the political, administrative, legal and human rights commission, of the substitutes of the senators who were appointed as judges of the Constitutional Court, elected governor of the Tshopo, and deceased, as the late Raymond Omba Pene Djunga.
This same commission will work on the draft law amending and supplementing the decree of January 30th on the Congolese Penal Code on the prevention and repression of human trafficking.
The Commission for Relations with Provincial Institutions and Decentralized Entities will examine the fundamental principles relating to the free administration of the provinces. The Economic, Financial and Good Governance Committee, for its part, will examine the finance bills for 2023 year and the one on accountability, especially since it is a budgetary session.
The bill on public finances will also be on the program, we note.
Other commissions, such as the socio-cultural one, will look into leasing, a bill from the government, as well as the bill relating to the safeguarding and enhancement of the material and immaterial cultural heritage of DRC.
For the first time in several months, it is reported, the former President of the Senate, Me Alexis Thambwe Mwamba, participated in the plenary, after treatment outside the country.
In addition, the President of the Senate, Modeste Bahayi Lukwebo welcomed, on behalf of all the senators, the last « masterful speech » of President Felix Antoine Tshisekedi at the 77th General Assembly of the United Nations, by which he mobilized the Congolese populations and the defence forces to bring peace to the DRC.