May 26, 2016 5:41 AM EDT

RIVAL ON THE RUN

Under the guise of a medical emergency, presidential candidate Moise Katumbi flew to South Africa on May 20 as Congolese authorities issued a warrant for his arrest. Katumbi, the popular head of Africa’s champion football club TP Mazembe, calls the coup allegations a “grotesque lie.”

RUNNING OUT THE CLOCK

The country’s constitution bars Kabila from a third term in office, but he has been doing everything in his power to delay elections, from refusing to fund the election board to demanding a census. On May 11, Congo’s courts ruled that if elections don’t take place in November, Kabila could stay in power until they do.

CHAOS LOOMS

Even though the U.S. has threatened sanctions on Kabila and his allies if elections fail to take place, few think they will before mid-2017. With outrage building over Katumbi’s arrest warrant, violence could follow. Protests over the first announcement that elections might be delayed, in January 2015, resulted in 40 dead. Another outbreak could be just the kind of disruption that Kabila needs to postpone elections indefinitely.

–ARYN BAKER

This appears in the June 06, 2016 issue of TIME.

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