Tension in Guinea over election results delay

Conakry. Guinean President Alpha Conde on Wednesday urged party leaders to accept the results of September 28 legislative polls, as security was ramped up in the capital amid fears of violence.
Guinean opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo prepares to cast his vote at a polling station in Conakry on September 28, 2013. Net photo.
Guinean opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo prepares to cast his vote at a polling station in Conakry on September 28, 2013. Net photo.

Conakry. Guinean President Alpha Conde on Wednesday urged party leaders to accept the results of September 28 legislative polls, as security was ramped up in the capital amid fears of violence.

With results trickling in, Mr Conde praised the vote as the dawn of democracy in the chronically unstable west African nation.

But the opposition has already complained of rigging during the election, which was meant to turn the page on a protracted transitional period.

Guinea’s electoral commission on Tuesday released some partial and provisional results.

Full provisional results had been due on Wednesday, but officials said tally sheets were still being transported from polling stations on Tuesday.

“I would like to say how proud I am... of your amazing mobilisation to make these legislative polls a real success,” Mr Conde said in a speech marking the 55th anniversary of Guinea’s independence from France.

The election “has allowed us to take another step on the path to democracy,” the 75-year-old leader said.

The top UN official in West Africa, Said Djinnit, also warned against any attempt to challenge the impending results in the street.

He urged “political parties to respect the verdict of the ballot box and... resort to legal means to settle any dispute that might arise from the polls.”

But police and military reinforcements were clearly visible Wednesday on the streets of Conakry, with barricades erected around the headquarters of the electoral commission.

Shops and market stalls remained shut in the tense atmosphere, even more than would usually be expected on the independence day bank holiday.

International election observers have therefore called on the electoral body to publish official legislative poll results on their website as they tally them in order to offset tension and suspicion.

This is after it became apparent that the Tuesday deadline for the publication of final results could not be respected.

 

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