UN Sec-Gen, Ban Ki-moon, Urges All Sides to Ensure Election is Peaceful and Credible
A market in the Guinean capital Conakry
25 June 2010 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged the people and institutions of Guinea to play their part in ensuring that Sunday’s presidential polls are conducted peacefully and result in the formation of a government fully reflecting the will of the public.
Two dozen candidates are contesting the presidential race in a country that has been dominated by military regimes and coups d’état since it became independent in 1958.
Last year the military’s bloody suppression of a political protest on the streets of the capital, Conakry, led to the deaths of more than 150 unarmed demonstrators and the rapes and sexual assaults of numerous others. A Government of national unity was set up in January as part of a transition towards a more democratic order.
In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban stressed “the importance of the peaceful conduct” of Sunday’s elections.
“He calls on Guinea’s national authorities, all political stakeholders, civil society and the electorate to continue to contribute towards a conducive environment for the holding of peaceful and credible polls that would result in the election of a Government that fully reflects the will of Guineans.”
Said Djinnit, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for West Africa, is in Guinea ahead of the polls as part of a joint effort between the UN, the African Union (AU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to support the electoral process.
Mr. Ban said in his statement that the UN reaffirms its support of the transitional process and he called on “the country’s partners to continue to accompany Guineans as they strive to restore constitutional order in their country, institute crucial socio-economic reforms and promote respect for human rights.”