It's been an eventful year for the Democratic Republic of Congo as the country prepares for elections.
Women in the DRC are much more than victims of violence and coming together to effect change.
Emmanuel Shadary is President Joseph Kabila's preferred presidential candidate meaning that Kabila could remain in power if not in office.
Jean-Pierre Bemba is a man with a past. Once accused of crimes against humanity, he is now making a play for the DRC's presidency.
The Democratic Republic of Congo has been in turmoil since President Kabila refused to relinquish power at the end of his term. But there is hope of ending the stalemate.
Too often developments in one country are seen in isolation. In southern Africa events in one affect others in the region.
Some African countries present a facade of democracy. The absence of substantive democracy is contributing to instability on the continent.
The outcome of the race between increasingly artful electoral manipulation and limitless possible manifestations of democratic expression is never entirely certain.
President Joseph Kabila remains in office despite upheaval in the DRC. He can still save face and a change of heart could see him become the first Congolese president to relinquish power.