News / Africa

Ivory Coast President Confident Ahead of Runoff Vote

A supporter of President Laurent Gbagbo watches election results in Abidjan (File)
A supporter of President Laurent Gbagbo watches election results in Abidjan (File)

In Ivory Coast, a spokesman says President Laurent Gbagbo is confident of victory as he prepares for a runoff election later this month against former Prime Minister Alassane Ouattara.  The election is the first presidential ballot in the West African nation in 10 years, when Mr. Gbagbo became head of state.

Neither President Gbagbo nor former prime minister Ouattara won a majority in Sunday's much-awaited presidential vote, so they will face each other in a second round run-off ballot at the end of this month.

Both campaigns are taking a break until Ivory Coast's constitutional court validates provisional results that show Mr. Gbagbo leading with about 38 percent of the vote, to just over 32 percent for Mr. Ouattara.  Former president Henri Konan Bedie finished third with 25 percent of the votes, and his party is calling for a recount.

In Abidjan Friday, Mr. Gbagbo's campaign spokesman, Affi N'Guessan, congratulated Ivorians on a peaceful, democratic poll and predicted Mr. Gbagbo would win the runoff, currently scheduled for November 28.

He says, in the first round Mr. Gbabgo dominated the southern part of the country, regardless of ethnicity.  According to the spokesman, Mr. Gbagbo won more than 45 percent of the votes in Abidjan, the West African nation's commercial capital, and also finished first in the western part of the country.  In the east, N'Guessan says, the president won more ballots than Bedie.

Supporters of presidential candidate and former President Henri Konan Bedie demonstrate outside his headquarters in Abidjan on 04 Nov 2010
Supporters of presidential candidate and former President Henri Konan Bedie demonstrate outside his headquarters in Abidjan on 04 Nov 2010

The campaign for both remaining candidates now focuses on winning over the 25 ercent share of the electorate that backeed Bedie.  The former president and Ouattara are part of the same opposition coalition, and they had pledged mutual support in the event of a runoff.  Still, President Gbagbo may be able to attract Bedie voters who are uncomfortable with Ouattara; the former prime minister was prevented from running for president in the past because of questions about his nationality.

Spokesman Affi N'Guessan says elections and politics are not simple arithmetic, and that one should not automatically conclude the opposition will win the second round because the sum of Bedie and Ouattara's first-round votes was larger than Gbagbo's total.  More important, the spokesman says, is the second-choice candidate for the voters who originally supported Bedie.

N'Guessan says Mr. Gbagbo's party is investigating suspicions of electoral irregularities in the northern part of Ivory Coast, where Ouattara dominated the first-round of the election.  The presidential spokesman says there large increases in the numbers of registered voters in that region.

The presidential election is meant to reunite Ivory Coast, which has suffered through years of instability.  A failed coup against Mr. Gbagbo in 2002 led to civil war that split the country between a rebel-held north and a government-held south.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

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

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid