Ministry urges calm as Congo presidential election nears.

By October 23, 2006

Congo-Kinshasa (MNN)–The Democratic Republic of Congo holds its second round of presidential elections in just six days.

The run-off is meant to crown a three-year peace process following Congo’s civil war. Beginning in 1998 and ending in 2003, the conflict sucked in neighbouring states and caused a humanitarian crisis that has killed over four million people.

However, recent fighting highlighted the potential threat to the upcoming polls posed by the private armies of both candidates, President Joseph Kabila and his challenger, Vice President and former rebel chief Jean-Pierre Bemba.

Grace Ministries International’s staff is praying for a peaceful process and transition. Aside from the obvious concerns over the impact of large-scale rioting, the GMI team is expressing unease over delays such trouble could present to missions work already delayed by bad weather.

GMI had been working to open a malnutrition center at their partner hospital in Kipaka when a storm dismantled it. At the beginning of October, the walls and half of the metal roofing were done on the malnutrition center at the hospital.

Post-storm, instead of dedicating, the team is rebuilding, racing the clock now as they strive to meet physical and spiritual needs of the poorest Congolese.

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