Following his meeting with Congo Brazzaville Sassou N’guesso in Kinshasa on 2 September 2016, Etienne Tshisekedi reiterated his boycott, on behalf of the Rally of Social and Political Forces for Change (Rassemblement), of the dialogue being facilitated by Edem Kodjo.
Door-stepped shortly after the meeting, the National Secretary for External Relations of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), Felix Tshisekedi, and the leader of the Citizenship Commitment for Development (Ecidé), Martin Fayulu, told the media that the Rassemblement will not be joining the dialogue because the opposition coalition rejected the facilitator.
Fayulu said “We already made it clear we will not join the dialogue being facilitated by Kodjo. Tshisekedi rejected the facilitator on 24 July, reiterated the rejection on 31 July, and confirmed it to the international community on 6 August 2016”. Ecidé leader added “we handed over to Sassou the memorandum that we had already submitted to the AU Commission Chair, Ms. Zuma”.
It will be recalled that Vital Kamerhe, co-moderator of the dialogue, proposed in his opening remarks during the dialogue opening ceremony to suspend the forum to allow him to convince G7 and the Rassemblement to join.
Both these opposition platforms rejected the call.
Felix Tshisekedi stressed “Kamerhe is not the facilitator. Kodjo is already posing problem as facilitator, Kamerhe should not complicate the situation further”.
Fayulu concluded saying “Sassou simply listened to us, without proposing any alternative. He met with Kabila, then met with us and promised to discuss with the Nuncio”.