Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Homegrown Jihadists: France Sets Out Plan to Monitor Web and Support Families

Read more

WEB NEWS

Ukrainians turn Russian 'evidence' into meme

Read more

FOCUS

Copenhagen seeks to decriminalise use of cannabis

Read more

FACE-OFF

French president's advisor resigns: A new blow for François Hollande

Read more

ENCORE!

Films as plays, plays as films and TV at the cinema

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Syria: Former hostages recount 10-month ordeal

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

José Bové, Candidate for the EU Commission presidency, Group of the Greens

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Alexis Tsipras, Candidate for the EU Commission presidency, European Left Party

Read more

FOCUS

'Pope-mania' hits John Paul II's Polish hometown

Read more

  • Fatah, Hamas agree to form Palestinian unity government

    Read more

  • New far-right mayor moves to quash Paris region mosque

    Read more

  • Gay marriage, one year on: ‘French civilisation did not crumble’

    Read more

  • Turkish PM offers condolences to descendants of Armenians killed in 1915

    Read more

  • NYPD public relations campaign on Twitter goes awry

    Read more

  • Russia vows to respond if 'attacked' in Ukraine

    Read more

  • In pictures: Violent protests erupt in Rio

    Read more

  • French hostage Gilberto Rodrigues Leal has died, Islamists say

    Read more

  • 'Pope-mania' hits John Paul II's Polish hometown

    Read more

  • French actress Catherine Deneuve to sell €4 million château

    Read more

  • Chelsea, Atletico draw 0-0 in first leg of Champions League semis

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch offensive in the east after politican 'tortured'

    Read more

  • Echoes of 2pac and Biggie? French rap feud turns violent

    Read more

  • New French film tackles grisly anti-Semitic murder

    Read more

  • Photos link ‘little green men’ in Ukraine to Russian troops

    Read more

  • New anti-radicalisation plans aimed at fighting jihadism

    Read more

  • David Moyes sacked by Man United after just 10 months

    Read more

Africa

Opposition cite ‘fraud’ and demand poll be cancelled

©

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-03-20

Opposition leaders in Guinea Bissau Tuesday demanded that Sunday’s presidential poll be cancelled, saying that it was a sham and riddled with irregularities. The call comes despite observers giving the poll a clean bill of health.

AFP - Guinea-Bissau's opposition demanded Tuesday the cancellation of a presidential poll they charge was a sham, further stoking fears of trouble in the coup-prone state after a high-level assassination.

Vote counting is still under way under increased security after former military intelligence chief Colonel Samba Diallo was shot dead just hours after polling closed on Sunday in the volatile west African nation.

As the United Nations appealed for calm, five leading presidential hopefuls said the vote was riddled with fraud and irregularities, despite observers having given it a clean bill of health.

"For us, the election was not transparent, fair or credible. We have come to the conclusion that fraud was committed," said Augusto Gomes, a spokesman for the candidates.

Former president Kumba Yala, who is seeking the top job again after being ousted in 2003 following three years at the head of a regime plagued by instability, demanded the election be cancelled.

"We demand the cancellation of the election because there were irregularities in the process," said Yala, who is currently placed second in initial vote results.

"Whoever publishes the results will be held responsible for what happens in this country," he added.

Provisional election results are expected this weekend. If no candidate wins outright, a second round will be held between April 22-29

The other presidential hopefuls making the accusations include third-placed lawmaker Manuel Serifo Nhamadjo and another former leader Henrique Rosa, who is coming in fourth.

Initial poll results put ex-prime minister Carlos Gomes Junior, 62, of the ruling African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (APIGCV) in the lead.

In a joint statement, the five opposition candidates said their accusations centred on the use of sham voting registers and fictitious polling stations, double voting, fake voters cards and the movement of voters from one area to another.

They said these "abnormal events" were perpetrated by the government and National Elections Commission.

Sunday's election has been seen as a key test of Guinea-Bissau's commitment to stability after decades of turmoil marked by coups and deadly score-settling between the army and state.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has appealed to the candidates and their supporters "to refrain from any action that could hamper the electoral process, and to respect the official results".

The country's international partners such as the United States and European Union are also looking for signs of stability to reinstate vital support to security sector reform which was frozen after an army mutiny in 2010.

Guinea-Bissau achieved independence from Portugal in 1974, the only west African nation to do so through armed combat.

But ever since then, the army and state have remained in constant, often deadly conflict, with the result that no president has ever completed a full term in office. Three have been overthrown in coups and one was assassinated in office in 2009.

Sunday's election was held after the last president, Malam Bacai Sanha, died in January following a long illness.

Despite a peaceful day of voting, Diallo was shot dead hours later by men in military dress as he sat on the terrace of a restaurant near his home.

Diallo was director of military intelligence until April 2010, when he was arrested with other top officers on suspicion of involvement in a 2009 bombing that killed the then army chief and prompted the murder of president Joao Bernardo Vieira in a revenge attack a few hours later.

The military has denied involvement in the killing while the national elections commission has sought to distance the incident from the vote.

Attorney General Edmundo Mendes said Tuesday that a probe into Diallo's death has been launched.

A dysfunctional state with a porous coastline and an archipelago where hidden airstrips can be set up, Guinea Bissau has also provided fertile ground for Latin American drug lords looking for a hub to ship their cocaine to Europe.

Date created : 2012-03-20

  • GUINEA BISSAU

    Guinea Bissau holds high-stakes election

    Read more

  • GUINEA-BISSAU

    President of Guinea-Bissau dies in Paris hospital

    Read more

  • GUINEA-BISSAU

    Hunt for failed coup suspects turns deadly

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)