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Civil Society, Parties Claim Guinea Poll Irregularities

June 30, 2010

Guinea: Civil society, parties claim Guinea poll irregularities
News – Africa news

Conakry, Guinea – The National Council of Civil Society Organizations (CN OSC) in Guinea on Tuesday denounced what it said were several cases of fraud during Sunday’s presidential poll.

It said there were several cases of irregularities in the capital, Conakry, and the countryside.

Some 4.297 million Guineans voted in more than 13,000 polling stations to choose a new president.

The Union of the Democratic Forces of Guinea (UFDG) of former Prime minister Cellou Dalein Diallo, has also alleged ballot rigging in the commune of Matam in Conakry, a stronghold of the Union of Republican Forces (UFR) led by the other former Prime minister, Sidya Touré.

UFDG also claims fraudulent activities in the commune of Ratoma in Conakry and has asked for the suspension of vote counting.

For its part, the Guinean People’s Rally (RPG) led by Alpha Conde is claiming cases of fraud and vote manipulation in Upper Guinea and Forest Guinea, its traditional strongholds.

European Union observers who were in those two regions say they noted “technical faults’ related to the refusal to let voters to cast their ballots but would not say whether these problems could have an impact on the results.

The Independent National Electoral Committee (INEC) has refrained from giving preliminary results arguing that it wants to wait until all the results reach its headquarters late on Tuesday evening at the latest.

The transitional President, General Sekouba Konate, is said to be willing to put a plane at the Committee’s disposal to collect the results from polling stations countrywide.

Meanwhile in Conakry, businesses mainly held by the Peulhs, a major ethnic group, are still closed for fear of looting and plundering that might follow the proclamation of results.

Guineans voted last Sunday in historic presidential election that observers see as the first truly democratic vote since independence.

Twenty-four candidates contested the polls that will see the end of a transition period supervised by the National Council for Democracy and Development (CNDD) military junta that seized power when Lansana Conte, one of the West African country’s two dictators, died in December 2008.

The vote took place under the Ouagadougou Accords brokered by the Burkina Faso President Blaise Compaore that drew a roadmap for the country’s return to constitutional rule.

The process for a return to constitutional rule was accelerated when the CNDD leader Moussa Dadis Camara was shot by an aide, Aboubacar “Toumba” Diakite, after a bloody crackdown by the military on an opposition rally at a sports stadium in Conakry and he was flown out of the country for medical treatment.

Sekouba Konate, the second in command of the CNDD who took over, stuck to his promise to organise free and fair elections and return the country to constitutional rule.

Conakry – Pana 30/06/2010

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