News / Africa

UN Calls for Calm as Guinea Election Postponed

The United Nations is calling for calm in Guinea after the suspension of campaigning and the postponement of presidential elections following violence between supporters of the two remaining candidates.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is calling on voters in Guinea to stay calm amid uncertainty over a second round of presidential elections that have been postponed without the announcement of a new date.

In a written statement, the Secretary General warns those who may attempt to disrupt an orderly and peaceful transition that they would be held accountable by Guineans and by the international community as a whole.

This vote was delayed, in part, because of two days of violence between supporters of former prime minister Cellou Diallo and long-time opposition leader Alpha Conde that killed one person and injured at least 50. The electoral commission suspended campaigning last Sunday after police used tear gas to break up those clashes.

The violence followed the conviction of two senior electoral officials accused of falsifying results from June's first round of voting.

Conakry's military governor Sekou Resco Camara told a meeting of local leaders that security forces will not allow that violence to be repeated. Camara said military patrols are now conducting a neighborhood-by-neighborhood search for illegal weapons in the capital because of last Sunday's violence.

But it is not just the political violence that is delaying this presidential run-off. The electoral commission is still awaiting delivery of 450,000 new polling cards that are scheduled to arrive Sunday or Monday.

The process is further complicated by the destruction of an untold number of voter cards and ballot papers in a fire at an electoral commission warehouse Thursday. Authorities say the  fire was started accidentally by an electrician.

The electoral commission was to meet with interim prime minister Jean-Marie Dore Thursday to announce a new date for the vote, but that meeting never happened. So both candidates await not only the resumption of campaigning but an election date toward which to campaign.

Makale Traore is Conde's campaign manager. Traore said it is not a question of an election date. What is important is that Conde's party wants to organize elections in Guinea that, for the first time in history, are transparent. Traore says delaying the poll will give voters more confidence in its eventual outcome.

Traore says the entire world has seen the irregularities in the first round of the electoral process, so Conde's party is insisting on certain conditions before the second round.

Among those conditions are additional polling stations in rural areas where some people had to travel too far to vote in the first round. The electoral commission is expanding the number of rural polling stations in consultation with both candidates, and that too is delaying the process.

Diallo is seen as the front-runner in this second round, having won more than 40 percent of the first-round vote compared to Conde's less than 20 percent. Diallo says electoral delays may discourage private sector investment in mining, which is Guinea's main source of foreign currency.

Diallo said everyone in Guinea should act democratically. They have all fought for people to be able to choose their leaders. But going into such a competition, Diallo says candidates should accept the fact that they might lose. And if they do, they should accept the results.

Acting military ruler General Sekouba Konate has been trying to return Guinea to civilian rule nearly two years after Captain Moussa Dadis Camara took power in a military coup. General Konate has reaffirmed his support for the electoral process and says the military will support whoever emerges as the winner.

You May Like

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers 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.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More