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Members of the Congolese Diaspora Express Joy at Being Able to Vote

In an unprecedented move since independence in 1960, DRC’s election will extend beyond the borders of the vast Central African state with nearly 100 million inhabitants, allowing voting from abroad — a right guaranteed by electoral law but never implemented. Embassies in the five countries selected by the electoral commission for this “pilot” experience — France, Belgium, South Africa, the United States, and Canada — registered their nationals on the electoral lists earlier this year. The diaspora also makes a significant contribution to the Congolese economy (1.7 billion dollars in 2022 according to the World Bank), helping families pay for education or healthcare in a country rich in minerals but where two-thirds of the population lives below the poverty line.