News / Africa

    Ivory Coast Elections Could be Delayed Again

    Ivory Coast Elections Could be Delayed Again
    Ivory Coast Elections Could be Delayed Again

    Multimedia

    Audio

    Controversy over the voter list in Ivory Coast is threatening to once again push back long-delayed presidential elections.  Election-related protests erupted around Ivory Coast this past week.

    Ivorian investigators have confirmed evidence of "fraud" in the voter list for the country's upcoming presidential elections.

    President Laurent Gbagbo accused the Independent Electoral Commission in January of approving a voter list that contained the names of almost a half million foreigners.  The accusations were followed by calls for electoral commission head, Robert Mambé, to resign.

    Announcing the investigators' findings Friday, spokesman Mohamed Diakité said the consequences of this alleged fraud were "extremely serious."

    He says despite opposition from electoral commission members, its central committee and President Gbagbo, electoral commission head Robert Mambé gave the unauthorized names to the technicians who then added them to most of the lists.  He says this finding brings the legitimacy of the electoral list into question.

    Mambé, an opposition member, said he does not plan to resign and the voter list in question should never have been released.

    He says he will continue to fight to finish what he knew from the beginning would be a difficult mission.  He says he did not commit fraud nor did he instruct others to commit fraud.

    The vote is an attempt to find a lasting political solution to nearly a decade of internal conflict in the once stable West African nation, but voter registration issues have prompted Ivory Coast to push back the election several times since President Laurent Gbagbo's mandate ran out in 2005.

    Questions of nationality were at the heart of the civil war in 2002 and remain sensitive in Ivory Coast, which has a large immigrant population.  Observers say recent political stalemate demonstrates just how far the country is from resolving the questions of "Who is Ivorian?" and "Who can vote?"

    Last week, mounting frustration erupted into violent protests outside courthouses around the country, first in Katiola and Divo, where one police officer was killed, and finally in Man, near the Liberian border, on Friday.  Thousands of people there stormed the courthouse, accusing the magistrate of trying to strike them from the voter list.

    The former rebel faction in the North, the New Forces, had released a statement earlier denouncing what they called attempts to remove northerners from the provisional voter rolls, by questioning their nationality without proof.  They cautioned against the "unpredictable consequences these attempts to strip people of their nationality could provoke."

    Justice Minister Mamadou Koné has not only condemned the outbreaks of violence, but also called for local magistrates to follow proper legal protocol when seeking to remove people from the voter rolls.  State security forces prevented him from reading his statement on national television.

    Opposition members have accused Mr. Gbagbo's party of pressuring courts to remove people from the voter list and of stalling elections to remain in power.  The opposition continues to call for the poll to happen in March, as planned.

    The U.N. peacekeeping mission in Ivory Coast has called for calm and continues to urge the country to organize elections as soon as possible.

    The deadline for the publication of the definitive voter list has been pushed back to February 14, and observers say recent political disputes make holding an election in March near impossible.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Who Are US Allies in Fight Against Islamic State?

    There is little but opportunism keeping coalition together analysts warn — SDFs Arab militias are not united even among themselves, frequently squabble and don’t share Kurds' vision for post-Assad Syria

    Learning Foreign Language Helps US Soldiers Bridge Culture Gap

    Effective interaction with local populations part of everyday curriculum at Monterey, California, Defense Language Institute

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora