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FILE - Congo's President Felix Tshisekedi waves to his supporters after casting his ballot inside a polling station during the presidential elections in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2023. Congo’s constitutional court has upheld the results of last month’s election that declared President Felix Tshisekedi the winner, rejecting a petition to annul the vote. The court called a petition by opposition candidate, Theodore Ngoy to redo the vote unfounded. Ngoy, who finished with less than 1% of the vote, was the only candidate to file an appeal. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy, File)

The Constitutional Court in the Democratic Republic of Congo has rejected two legal challenges to the provisional results of a contested presidential election last month and declared President Félix Tshisekedi the final winner.

Mr Tshisekedi got 73.47% of the vote, the court said.

The court validated the incumbent’s victory despite independent observers’ reports of widespread irregularities during the 20th December vote.

Only one opposition contender out of eighteen took the matter to court.

Others including the runner-up, Moïse Katumbi, refused to mount a legal challenge after questioning the independence of the judiciary.

The Constitutional Court ruled that the reported irregularities could not have impacted election results because there was such a big gap between the incumbent and Katumbi, who won around 18% of votes.

The verdict paves the way for Mr Tshisekedi’s swearing in for a second term on 20th January.

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