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Issue-based political debate in the DRC. Photo Credit: NDI DRC Field Staff
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)


Democratic development in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) faces a myriad of challenges, including a legacy of exploitation and conflict, lack of physical and communications infrastructure, extreme poverty and continuing pockets of insecurity. NDI’s activities in the DRC began in 2004 with assisting the country’s unarmed political organizations to participate in the Inter-Congolese Dialogue, which established a framework for transitioning from government by armed groups to an elected democracy. NDI returned to the DRC in June 2011 to strengthen the capacity of Congolese political parties to effectively compete in elections that year.  Other past NDI programming in the DRC included supporting political parties in collaborating and cross-party initiatives for reform, the rights of persons living with disabilities, and womens' political participation, among other topics.  

Since 2011, NDI has been promoting broad-based discussions among Congolese political and civic leaders on elections and their impact on the DRC’s democratization process. Through strengthening Congolese capacity to build transparency and inclusion into the election and ongoing reform process, NDI is also assisting political parties and CSOs to better respond to and represent citizens’ concerns. During the leadup to the December 2023 elections, NDI worked with political parties and civic activists to support an analysis of the electoral framework and an  analysis of political party compliance with reform measures. Current NDI programming focuses on leveraging recently passed electoral reforms to strengthen electoral credibility in the DRC and regional collaboration among civic actors to strengthen strategic collaboration among democracy and human rights activists to safeguard civil liberties.


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