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5 Guinea Bissau candidates claim poll fraud

Ex-President Kumba Yalo claiming fraud in Sunday's pollEx-President Kumba Yalo claiming fraud in Sunday's poll (Photo: rnw.nl)
March 21, 2012

Five of Guinea Bissau’s nine presidential candidates are claiming there was fraud in last Sunday’s election, with the official results expected to be announced on Thursday.

The election is to replace former President Malam Bacai Sanha who died last month in a Paris hospital.

The five candidates, including former President Kumba Yala, spoke of widespread irregularities and said any results arising from the process would not be credible.

But after Sunday’s polls closed, African and European election observers praised conduct of the poll, which was held in a peaceful manner.

Reports say there are strong indications that a runoff is likely, as none of the candidates has got enough votes to win outright in the first round.

President Sanha’s death in January came just a week after authorities announced a foiled plot to overthrow the government led by the former naval chief.

It also happened in the aftermath of a series of street protests which called for the removal of the country's Prime Minister Carlos Gomez Junior, one of the nine presidential candidates in last Sunday’s election.

Prior to the 2009 polls won by the late Sahna, Guinea Bissau had seen repeated incidents of political assassinations, the last being the assassinations of ex-President Jao Bernando Vieira and his military chief.

Less than 24 hours after the latest election, the country’s former military intelligence chief was gunned down near his home in the capital reportedly by someone in military uniform.


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