Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Friday's wise words

    Our proverb of the day:

    Quote Message: Before a bird flies off I've counted the eggs in its belly." from A Krio proverb sent by Ahmid in Waterloo, Sierra Leone
    A Krio proverb sent by Ahmid in Waterloo, Sierra Leone

    Click here to send us your African proverbs

  2. Good morning

    Welcome back to BBC Africa Live where we will bring you the latest news and analysis from around the continent.

  3. Scroll down for Thursday's stories

    We'll be back on Friday

    BBC Africa Live

    Farouk Chothia

    That's it from BBC Africa Live after a momentous day in the Democratic Republic of Congo. We'll be back on Friday. In the meantime, stay in touch by listening to the BBC Africa Today podcast or checking the BBC News website.

    Here's a reminder of Thursday's wise words:

    Quote Message: A hen cannot scratch for food with her two legs simultaneously." from Sent by Jacob Dior Macueng, Rumbek, South Sudan
    Sent by Jacob Dior Macueng, Rumbek, South Sudan

    Click here to send us your African proverbs

    And we leave you with this photo of a supporter of Felix Tshisekedi, the first-ever opposition candidate to be declared the winner of a presidential election in DR Congo - a country roughly the size of Western Europe:

    A supporter of Felix Tshisekedi, leader of the Congolese main opposition party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress who was announced as the winner of the presidential elections, celebrates in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 10, 2019.
  4. Divided opposition 'plays into Kabila's hands'

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    Supporters of DR Congo"s opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi, the leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) party, celebrate after he was declared the winner by electoral commission, in Limete, Kinshasa
    Image caption: Supporters of Felix Tshisekedi have no doubt he won

    Usually within hours of the announcement of an electoral result, even a rigged one, the congratulatory messages from foreign leaders start trickling in.

    But so far there have only been calls for calm in the Democratic Republic of Congo and for the full list of results to be made public so that a proper assessment can be made on whether opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi really won the presidential election.

    The fact that outgoing President Joseph Kabila’s chosen successor, Emmanuel Shadary, was resoundingly rejected by the electorate will be seen by some as a sign that there has been a degree of democracy in action in DR Congo.

    But the influential Catholic Church, which says it had 40,000 election observers across the country, has fuelled the belief that the electoral commission is far from independent.

    It said the official result does not match its findings. Another opposition candidate, Martin Fayulu, says he won and has condemned the official result as an "unacceptable electoral scam".

    So, the opposition's inability to unite behind one candidate appears to have played into President Kabila's hands, and he may remain hugely influential long after a final verdict is given on this chaotic poll.

  5. UK 'very concerned' about DR Congo poll result

    The UK's Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has added his voice to doubts about the credibility of Felix Tshisekedi's victory in the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election.

    He tweeted that the result will be discussed by the UN Security Council on Friday:

    View more on twitter
  6. Suspicion of backroom deal in DR Congo poll

    Analysis

    Moses Rono

    BBC Monitoring

    A billboard of DR Congo"s outgoing President Joseph Kabila burned by supporters of the opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi, the leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) party, is seen in Limete, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 10 January 2019
    Image caption: Joseph Kabila has ruled in DR Congo for 18 years

    Allegations that the Democratic Republic of Congo's President Joseph Kabila cut a deal with opposition candidate Felix Tshisekedi to deny another opposition candidate, Martin Fayulu, victory has raised concerns about the legitimacy of the result.

    A statement by the influential Catholic Church that the result does not reflect the data its observers collected from polling stations will lend credibility to claims of a backroom deal.

    Mr Fayulu, who has rejected the result, has limited choices, unless the Catholic Church and civil society groups mobilise support for him.

    The Constitutional Court - which barred Mr Kabila’s fiercest opponents, former Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba and former regional governor Moise Katumbi, from contesting the election - is seen as loyal to the outgoing president.

    If Mr Tshisekedi assumes power, some of his legitimacy will be eroded because of the suspicion that he struck a deal with Mr Kabila.

    There is the risk of a long-drawn political dispute - and unrest - in a country which has so far never had a peaceful transfer of power.

  7. 'Time for change' in DR Congo

    Louise Dewast

    Kinshasa, DR Congo

    This is a historic moment for the opposition in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who for decades had failed to seize power.

    For many, this is finally the time for change. And supporters of President Joseph Kabila are praising his willingness to hand over power.

    But the challenges facing the next president are immense - and some are doubting Felix Tshiskedi’s independence and his ability to govern.

    A supporter of Felix Tshisekedi, leader of the Congolese main opposition party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) who was announced as the winner of the presidential elections, celebrates outside the party"s headquarters in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 10, 2019.
    Image caption: Supporters of Felix Tshisekedi believe history is in the making

    Political analyst Albert Moleka believes Mr Kabila will try and stay influential behind the scenes.

    "He still doesn’t want to go. He wants to have a control of the system," Mr Moleka said.

    While the ruling party's candidate Emmanuel Shadary has conceded, Martin Fayulu, the losing opposition candidate, has rejected the result and is likely to lodge an appeal in the Constitutional Court.

    So pressure will be on the judges, who will make a ruling on any challenges and announce a final winner.

  8. The power of the Catholic Church in DR Congo

    With the Roman Catholic Church in the Democratic Republic of Congo casting doubts on the credibility of the presidential election result, BBC Africa editor Fergal Keane writes about its influence in the central African state:

    About 40% of DR Congo's population is Roman Catholic and the church has a wide network of schools and hospitals.

    It is seen by many Congolese as a moral voice in a country where politics has so often been tarnished by corruption.

    A man holds a Catholic cross as he takes part, with a group of Catholic faithfuls, in a demonstration outside the St Francois De Sales Church, during a protest called on by the Catholic Church, to push for the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to step down on February 25, 2018 in Kinshasa
    Image caption: The Church pushed for elections in DR Congo

    The Church may now be publicly doubting the results but it will be very wary of any public demonstrations because it knows from the experience of past crackdowns that leading people onto the streets can have tragic consequences.

    The security forces have used live ammunition as well as tear gas and beatings during previous protests.

    Congolese policemen walk near Congo"s Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) headquarters in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 10, 2019.
    Image caption: Police have maintained a strong presence in the capital, Kinshasa, to prevent unrest
  9. Joy in Tshisekedi camp

    In the Democratic of Congo's capital, Kinshasa, supporters of opposition politician Felix Tshsekedi are ecstatic following his victory in the presidential poll, as these photos of show:

    Tshisekedi supporters
    Tshisekedi supporters
    Tshisekedi supporters
  10. 'Four killed' in DR Congo protest

    Two police officers and two civilians have been killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo's south-western city of Kikwit following protests over opposition candidate Felix Tshisekedi's victory in the presidential election, AFP news agency quotes police as saying.

    "In the operation to restore public order today [Thursday] in Kikwit, two policemen and two civilian were killed. We also recorded 10 wounded," city police chief General Dieudonne Mutepeke told AFP.

  11. In video: The drama in DR Congo

    Opposition candidate Felix Tshisekedi has won the presidential election in the Democratic Republic of Congo, electoral officials say.

    The announcement, made overnight, sparked accusations of an "electoral coup" from runner-up Martin Fayulu.

    The Catholic Church said that the result did not match data collected by its election monitors.

    BBC Africa's video unit has captured all the drama:

    Video content

    Video caption: DR Congo presidential election: Joy and dismay as Tshisekedi named winner
  12. Saluting the Congolese people

    A prominent human rights campaigner has tweeted that it's time to salute the wide range of groups which forced President Joseph Kabila to hold the election:

    View more on twitter

    Mr Kabila's mandate ended two years ago, but the poll was repeatedly delayed until it finally went ahead on 30 December.

    Opposition groups staged a series of protests to push the electoral commission to organise the election.

    Some of the protests were brutally crushed by the security forces.

  13. Media reaction to Tshisekedi win

    Supporters of Felix Tshisekedi, leader of the Congolese main opposition party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) who was announced as the winner of the presidential elections, celebrate outside the party"s headquarters in Kinshasa
    Image caption: This is the first time an opposition candidate has won the presidency in DR Congo

    Voters suspect a stitch up - that's the headline for an article in the influential UK-based Economist publication following the declaration of Felix Tshisekedi as the provisional winner of the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election.

    It wrote:

    Quote Message: The declaration marks the end of the ruling party’s long stay in power and means that President Joseph Kabila and his preferred successor must admit defeat.
    Quote Message: But many voters think they have been cheated nonetheless. Mr Tshisekedi was not the man tipped to win.
    Quote Message: Critics say that Mr Kabila was desperate to keep Mr Fayulu away from the throne because he was backed by two of the president’s biggest adversaries [Moise Katumbi, a businessman, and Jean-Pierre Bemba, a former warlord, who were both barred from standing].
    Quote Message: Mr Fayulu appeared to represent real change. He had campaigned on a promise to reduce corruption and enforce the rule of law - an obvious threat to those who have looted this giant, mineral-rich country for decades.
    Quote Message: Mr Tshisekedi, by contrast, is thought less likely to shake things up, or to ask awkward questions about Mr Kabila’s business empire and the dazzling wealth of his cronies."
  14. Tshisekedi's victory 'invented in dark rooms'

    One of the main opposition candidates in the Democratic Republic of the Congo"s presidential elections to be held on December 30, Martin Fayulu (C), addresses the press on December 25, 2018 in Kinshasa.
    Image caption: Martin Fayulu (C) led in opinion polls

    The result of the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election was "invented and fabricated in dark rooms" of the ruling coalition, defeated opposition candidate Martin Fayulu has said, reports BBC Afrique.

    Mr Fayulu - who lost to another opposition candidate, Felix Tshisekedi - added:

    Quote Message: These results have nothing to do with the truth from ballots. This clearly is an unacceptable electoral scam, aiming at creating general chaos all over the country.
    Quote Message: We cannot accept that the will of our people is not respected."
    Supporters of DR Congo"s opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi, the leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) party, celebrate after he was declared the winner by the electoral commission, in Limete, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 10 January 2019.
    Image caption: Felix Tshisekedi's supporters believe history has been made

    In his reaction, Mr Tshisekedi promised to be the president of the entire nation.

    He heaped praise on President Joseph Kabila, whose preferred successor, Emmanuel Shadary, got fewer votes than both opposition candidates.

    Mr Tshisekedi said:

    Quote Message: "No-one could have imagined such a scenario whereby an opposition candidate would emerge victorious."
    Quote Message: I pay tribute to President Joseph Kabila and today we should no longer see him as an adversary, but rather, a partner in democratic change in our country."
  15. DR Congo - a land of riches

    The next president of the Democratic Republic of Congo takes over one of the richest countries in Africa - and will hold our fate in his hands because we rely heavily on its mineral resources.

    In fact, the central African state is central to the boom in electric car sales.

    Among a wealth of other metals, DR Congo is thought to have more than half of the world's supply of cobalt - an essential ingredient in the batteries that power electric vehicles and mobile phones.

    Graphic

    In theory, the reserves of cobalt and other minerals like diamonds, copper and gold, should make DR Congo one of the richest countries in Africa, but its people are among the poorest.

    DR Congo has been exploited for its wealth since the first European explorers arrived in the 15th Century.

  16. Excluded Congo voters 'hold balance of power'

    One of the main opposition candidates in the Democratic Republic of the Congo's presidential elections to be held on December 30, Martin Fayulu (C), looks on after addressing the press on December 25, 2018 in Kinshasa.
    Image caption: Former oil executive Martin Fayulu says he has been robbed of victory

    The BBC World Service's Will Ross has reminded us that people in three key regions in the Democratic Republic of Congo are supposed to vote in March - and they could hold the balance of power.

    The election commission had postponed voting in the eastern cities of Beni and Butembo, citing a deadly Ebola outbreak as one of the reasons for the decision.

    People in Yumbi in the west also did not vote on 30 December, with officials saying unrest in the region made it difficult to hold elections there.

    Our reporter has tweeted:

    View more on twitter

    The provisional results were:

    • Felix Tshisekedi - 7 million votes
    • Martin Fayulu - 6.4 million votes
    • Emmanuel Shadary - 4.4 million votes

    The result can be challenged in the courts.

  17. AU: Poll dispute must be resolved peacefully

    Supporters of Felix Tshisekedi, leader of the Congolese main opposition party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) who was announced as the winner of the presidential elections, celebrate outside the party"s headquarters in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 10, 2019.
    Image caption: The opposition has never before won a presidential election in DR Congo

    The African Union (AU) has called for the dispute over the presidential election result in the Democratic Republic of Congo to be resolved amicably.

    AU commission chief Moussa Faki Mahamat said in a statement:

    Quote Message: It is important that any disagreement over the proclaimed results, notably that they did not reflect voters' wishes, be resolved peacefully, by turning to the relevant laws and through political dialogue between the parties involved."
  18. 'Crackdown' on DR Congo opposition protest

    Security forces opened fired early on Thursday after crowds attacked symbols of government in the Democratic Republic of Congo's south-western Kikwit city, which is 500km (310 miles) from the capital, Kinshasa, Reuters news agency reports.

    At least two people died in the melee, it quoted a local journalist and a UN source as saying.

    Supporters of defeated opposition candidate Martin Fayulu also protested in the north-eastern town of Kisangani, Reuters reported.

  19. Talcum powder and passionate celebrations

    The BBC's Piers Scholfield has tweeted a video of the mood outside the headquarters of Felix Tshisekedi, the provisional winner of the Democratic Republic of Congo presidential election:

    View more on twitter
  20. Catholic Church calls for calm in DR Congo

    Fergal Keane

    BBC Africa editor, Kinshasa

    Supporters of DR Congo's opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi, the leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) party, celebrate after he was declared the winner by electoral commission, in Limete, Kinshasa,
    Image caption: Felix Tshisekedi's supporters are jubilant after he was declared the winner

    The Roman Catholic Church in the Democratic Republic of Congo is now publicly doubting the provisional results from the 30 December presidential election.

    Abbe Donacien Nshole said the figures released by the electoral commission did not match what had been gathered by the church's own observers.

    This statement was followed by loud cheers at the press briefing.

    The church had 40,000 observers across the country during the poll and earlier briefed diplomats that the other opposition candidate, Martin Fayulu, had won the election.

    However, the church will be very wary of any public demonstrations and Abbe Nshole appealed for calm and maturity from the electorate.

    There have been scenes of enthusiastic celebration by hundreds of people at the headquarters of Felix Tshisekedi - the winning candidate.