The country is a “landscape of horror,” according to the U.N. commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Raad Hussein.
Constitutionally, the Democratic Republic of the Congo is a presidential republic. The people elect a president for a finite term and then elections are held after the completion of that term.
However, dictator-like leaders have dominated the political landscape since the country’s independence from Belgium in 1960. These leaders have suspended elections in favor of continuing their power along with low approval ratings. The most recent scheduled elections for November 2016 were suspended by current President Joseph Kabila to extend his reign.
President Kabila’s decision to postpone elections has led to massive protests and the potential breakdown of the Congo’s “democratic” system.