The Democratic Republic of Congo’s court of Cassation accepted Vital Kemerhe’s appeal and overturned his 13 years prison sentence over corruption allegations. The case is now referred to Kinshasa-Gombe Court of Appeal where new judges will be appointed.
For the last two years, President Felix Tshisekedi’s former cabinet director has been accused of the embezzlement of nearly 50 million dollars meant for the construction of prefabricated houses for the military and police.
Kamerhe, 63, was first convicted to 20 years in prison in April 2020. It was reduced to 13 years in prison on appeal in June 2021.
Last December, the senior politician was granted a conditional release for health reasons.
In 2018, Kamerhe withdrew in favor of Tshisekedi at the end of the presidential campaign and, according to an agreement between the two men, was to be a candidate in the next election scheduled for 2023.
His lawyers claim his treatment is to prevent him from running in 2023 as the congolese law does not permit people convicted of corruption to participate in the race for presidency.