News / Africa

    Guinea Presidential Candidate Unhappy With Postponed Election

    Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore (C) and mediator in the guinea crisis poses after a meeting with Guinea's presidential candidate Cellou Daleine Diallo (R) and Alpha Conde (R) on 3 Sep 2010 at the presidential palace in Ouagadougou
    Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore (C) and mediator in the guinea crisis poses after a meeting with Guinea's presidential candidate Cellou Daleine Diallo (R) and Alpha Conde (R) on 3 Sep 2010 at the presidential palace in Ouagadougou

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    • Yousouff Sylla, a special adviser to Guinea's presidential candidate and former Prime Minister Cellou Dalein Diallo spoke with Clottey

    Peter Clottey

    A top official of the Union of Democratic Forces in Guinea (UDFG) said Guineans as well as the international community are disappointed after interim President General Sekouba Konate indefinitely postponed the second round of vote originally scheduled for this Sunday.

    Yousouff Sylla, a special adviser to presidential candidate and former Prime Minister Cellou Dalein Diallo said despite the technical challenges the electoral commission is facing, the junta leader should have announced a new date for the second round of voting instead of an indefinite postponement.

    “It’s not only the supporters of Mr. Diallo, it is all the Guineans and even the donor community. We need to know when the elections are going to be organized. This is a major point that everyone is looking for. Unfortunately, in his message, he (Konate) didn’t say anything about that point,” he said.

    In a live nationwide broadcast late Wednesday night, General Konate announced the postponement of the second round of vote without indicating a possible new date for the election.

    Local media reported that officials of the electoral commission will be continuing discussions Thursday on a possible new date for the second round of vote.

    Guinea's acting president General Sekouba Konate, left, speaks with Prime Minister of the transitional government Jean Marie Dore, 26 Jun 2010 (file photo)
    Guinea's acting president General Sekouba Konate, left, speaks with Prime Minister of the transitional government Jean Marie Dore, 26 Jun 2010 (file photo)

    Attorney Thierno Balde, president of Guinea’s Research Institute on Democracy and Rule of Law, a non-governmental organization said it s unlikely the electoral commission will be able to hold the election this weekend, due to what he described as significant logistical and technical difficulties facing the electoral body.

    The second round of vote will pit former Prime Minister Cellou Dalein Diallo against veteran opposition leader Alpha Conde. Mr. Conde and his supporters had demanded the election be postponed after citing voter irregularities during the first round of vote.

    But, Conde’s postponement demand was rejected by supporters of Mr. Diallo who wanted the election to be held this Sunday as originally scheduled.

    Special adviser Sylla said Guineans cannot take pride in the election delay.

    “Even the president is disappointed. Everybody is disappointed maybe except Mr. Conde because he is looking for postponing the elections all the time.”

    Some analysts say heightened tension could potentially trigger violence among rival groups.

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