Guinea’s Election Frontrunner, Cellou Dalein Diallo, Demands Early Vote
Guinea’s election front runner Cellou Dalein Diallo, also former prime minister, is pressing for an earliest possible run-off after the second round of the presidential elections was delayed this week.
The alliance in support of Diallo on Friday called on the Guinean authorities to fix “an immediate date” for holding the vote after the election date was put off from Sept. 19 amid deadly clashes between the camps of the two candidates.
At least one person was killed and 50 others injured in the confrontation between the supporters of the candidates, who kicked off their election campaigns early in the month. The authorities have decided to postpone the second round while suspending the election campaigns.
The “President Cellou Dalein” alliance asked that “in the next few hours, the soonest possible date should be fixed for holding the second round of presidential elections,” the camp’s spokesman Mamadou Bah Baadiko said.
The alliance also expressed regret that “it was only four days before the country goes for the second round when Guineans were told that CENI (electoral commission) was not able to organize the second round of presidential elections by Sept. 19, 2010.”
“The alliance wants to express its fears over lack of political will on the part of the transitional authorities to organize the second round of presidential elections,” Baadiko added.
He declared that the alliance will strongly oppose any attempt to delay or stop the Guinean people from holding the elections.
Diallo, the candidate for the Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea (UFDG), led the first round of presidential elections held in June with 43.69 percent of the votes cast, beating his closest rival Alpha Conde of the Rally of Guinean People (RPG), who got 18. 25 percent.
Conde, however, contests the results in the first round, filing a lawsuit with a tribunal against CENI chief Ben Sekou Sylla, who and another senior election official were sentenced to one year in prison days before the planned date for the run-off.
Sylla died in a hospital in Paris on Tuesday after taking medical treatment for months. He returned to Guinea during the first round of elections.
Conde also demands the current interim chairperson of the electoral commission, Hadja Aminata Camara, step down charging her with siding with his rival Diallo.