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

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike in Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital 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.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid