President Uhuru Kenyatta was the only head of state present during Democratic Republic of Congo’s new President Felix Tshisekedi’s inauguration.
Reports indicate that 17 other heads of state were invited but did not show up. They include the President of Tanzania, Malawi, South Africa, Ethiopia Sudan, Sudan, Egypt, Sierra Leone, Haïti, CAR, Zimbabwe among others.
President Kenyatta was accompanied by AU’s High Representative for Infrastructure Development Raila Odinga and Special peace envoy Kalonzo Musyoka to the event held at the state’s Presidential Palace in Kinshasa.
Mr Tshisekedi takes over the reigns of power from Joseph Kabila who ruled the country for 18 years.
In a hotly contested race, the 55 year old head of state garnered 38.5 per cent of the votes, while Martin Fayulu, who also comes from the opposition, got 34.8 per cent.
It was also reported that he was briefly taken ill while delivering his inauguration speech only to return 12 minutes later.
“The campaign we had to run… got the better of me,” he explained adding that it was an emotional moment for him.
His supporters, many of them dressed in white, celebrated the historic event outside the Palace of the Nation, the seat of the presidency, in Kinshasa.