MONUSCO/Alain Likota Voters look for their names in the lists during Presidential and Legislative elections in in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (30 December 2018).
France was quick to react to the surprise win of opposition candidate Felix Tshisekedi in the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election. He added: "The Catholic Church of Congo did its tally and announced completely different results". She said Shadary would make a statement on the results in a few hours.
The secretary general of DRC's Catholic Church would not reveal who won the vote but, according to diplomats briefed on the results, rival opposition candidate Martin Fayulu won by a comfortable margin.
Just hours later, the Church said election results tallied by its 40,000 observers scattered across the country showed a different victor, without specifying who.
Vote tallies by Congo's Catholic Church had Favulu as the victor, according to two diplomats briefed on the findings. Two diplomats also said that all major observation missions, including from the African Union and the Southern African Development Community, showed similar results with Fayulu the victor.
Fellow opposition candidate Fayulu who was backed by former Katanga governor Moise Katumbi - considered a traitor by Kabila - and ex-warlord and former vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba, had also sounded a conciliatory tone.
Losing candidates can contest Tshisekedi's victory before Congo's constitutional court, which has 10 days to hear and rule on any challenges.
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According to news reports, the preliminary results announced by the independent electoral commission, known by its French acronym, CENI, which declared opposition candidate Felix Tshisekedi the victor of the 30 December election, do not tally with the unofficial figures gathered by independent poll observers.
With 7 million votes, or 38 percent, Tshisekedi outpaced Fayulu, another opposition frontrunner, who came in second with more than 6 million votes.
Residents celebrate in Kinshasa, Congo, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, after learning that opposition presidential candidate Felix Tshisekedi had been declared the victor of the elections.
The result is certain to fuel further suspicion that Tshisekedi, who the last opinion polls before the election showed was well behind Fayulu, struck a power-sharing pact with Kabila.
Fayulu's supporters say the authorities rigged the result on behalf of Tshisekedi as part of a deal to protect figures from the outgoing administration.
Mr Kabila has ruled since 2001 in the troubled nation rich in the minerals key to smartphones around the world and has amassed vast wealth. "This is the beginning of national reconciliation". The electoral commission on Sunday delayed it indefinitely.
Congo's government cut internet service the day after the vote to prevent speculation on social media.
Happy Tshsekedi supporters in Kinshasa, a lively opposition stronghold, said they were delighted by their candidate's win and happy to see Mr Kabila step down.
The current president, Joseph Kabila, is stepping down after 18 years in office.