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Ivory Coast Elections: Voters go to vote in the context of a boycott by the opposition



People wait to vote in the presidential election in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, October 31, 2020.

image copyrightReuters

image captionEveryone voted for theirs in the controversial election

Votes were taken in the controversial Ivory Coast presidential election.

At least 14 people have been killed since riots erupted in August after President Alassane Ouattara said he would run again after the sudden death of his preferred successor.

The main opposition candidates, Pascal Affi N’Guessan and Henri Konan Bédié, consider Mr. Ouattara to run for a third term as illegal.

They boycotted the vote and called on the people to disobey.

The polls close according to the schedule at 18:00 local time (GMT). According to Reuters, the votes are currently counted.

There were reports of turmoil in the opposition strongholds on Saturday, with streets blocked off and election materials burned.

After voting in Abidjan, Mr. Ouattara called for an end to the protests.

“I call on those who call for civil disobedience, resulting in loss of life, to stop,” he said.

image copyrightEPA
image captionPresident Alassane Ouattara urged everyone to participate in voting for him

“They should stop because Côte d’Ivoire needs peace, these are criminal acts and we hope that all of this can be stopped, so that after the election this country can move on. that they have achieved over the past few years. “

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He also urged people to vote on their own.

“I just fulfilled my citizenship. I am asking all of our peace-loving and patriotic citizens to vote. It is an important day for democracy,” he said.

Why is it so controversial?

Under its constitution, Ivory Coast has a presidential limit of two terms. Mr. Ouattara – who was elected twice – initially said he would refuse.

media annotationPresident Ivorian Ouattara’s election decision sparked protests, while the opposition was calling for a boycott.

However, in July, the ruling party’s predecessor, Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, died of a heart attack.

Mr. Ouattara then announced that he would run for president.

His supporters argue that a constitutional change in 2016 reset the clock and his first term does not count.

Those who oppose him do not share such views, instead claiming that Mr Ouattara running for a third term is illegal.

What is the background of stress?

There has been a decades-long quarrel between some of the country’s top political figures.

In 2010, Laurent Gbagbo, then president, refused to give in to Mr. Ouattara after that year’s election and this sparked a fierce civil war.

More than 3,000 people were killed in the violent five months.

Mr. Gbagbo also voluntarily ran for election this year, but the election committee blocked him because he was sentenced in Ivory court.

He is one of the nearly 40 potential candidates rejected by the committee.

Who are the four presidential candidates?

  • Alassane Ouattara, 78, an economist. Become president in 2011, serving his second term after years of opposition.

    Party: Rallying the Houphouëtists for Democracy and Peace (RHDP)

  • Henri Konan Bédié, 86, career politicians. Holding the presidency from 1993 to 1999, was overthrown in a coup. Party: Ivory Coast Democratic Party (PCDI)
  • Pascal Affi N’Guessan, 67 years old, politician. Served as prime minister from 2000 to 2003 under President Laurent Gbagbo. Party: Popular Ivory Front (FPI)
  • Kouadio Konan Bertin, The 51-year-old, career politician known as the KKB, used to be the youth leader in the former Ivory Coast’s ruling Democratic Party, is now a congressman. Independent candidate

Related topics

  • Ivory Coast


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