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Burkina's Compaoré Wins by Landslide

  • Anne Look

A man casts his ballot during Burkina Faso elections at Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, 21 Nov 2010

A man casts his ballot during Burkina Faso elections at Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, 21 Nov 2010

Burkina Faso President Blaise Compaoré won a landslide victory in the country's presidential poll, according to provisional results announced Thursday. Four opposition candidates are now contesting those results and calling for the president of the electoral commission to resign.

Burkina Faso's electoral commission announced provisional results Thursday for the November 21 presidential poll.

Electoral commission president, Moussa Michel Tapsoba, says provisional results show Mr. Compaoré winning 80 percent of votes. Opposition frontrunners, Arba Diallo and Bénéwendé Sankara, followed with eight and six percent of votes respectively.

Diallo and Sankara, along with two other opposition candidates, say they are contesting provisional results, citing irregularities.

On Thursday, a judge upheld a complaint filed before the vote by four opposition candidates, who had argued that voter cards did not conform to the electoral code and were therefore invalid and could lead to fraud. The court ruled that some voter cards did not contain all the required information, specifically place of birth.

Opposition leader, Sankara, had refused to vote last Sunday in protest of the fraudulent cards.

Sankara says they are calling for the president of the electoral commission to resign immediately and without condition. He says they are calling for a new electoral commission to be put in place to redo this presidential poll in the hopes that the law will be respected.

Mr. Compaoré's campaign did not express concern over the legal disputes.

Mr. Compaoré's campaign director, Assimi Kouanda, says Burkinabe have once again demonstrated their attachment to democracy, freedom and Mr. Compaore. He says we are naturally very satisfied with these results.

Mr. Compaoré has been in power since a 1987 coup and won the last election in 2005 with 80 percent of the votes.

Analysts say Mr. Compaoré has brought stability to the poor, landlocked West African country which has experienced five coups since independence in 1960.

Independent candidate, Maxime Kaboré, says he is not contesting results.

Kaboré says those who are contesting are sore losers. He says there were certain shortcomings that need to be improved upon, but the election was transparent overall. He says he can understand that voters would want to keep the same president and preserve continuity, so long as there is peace.

Burkinabe voters said this election held little suspense for them. The electoral commission announced Thursday that just over half of Burkina Faso's 3.2 million registered voters went to the polls.

Mr. Compaoré's party is seeking to abolish constitutional term limits for the presidency. According to the current limit of two five-year terms that was put in place in 2002, this election would be his last.

Burkina Faso's constitutional court has one week to review complaints and confirm results of the poll.