News / Africa

UN: Guinea Vote Delay Could Destabilize West Africa

A soldier sits amidst election posters of Presidential candidate Alpha Conde in the entrance of the Guinean People Rally (RPG) headquarters in Guinea's capital Conakry Saturday 18 Sept. 2010.
A soldier sits amidst election posters of Presidential candidate Alpha Conde in the entrance of the Guinean People Rally (RPG) headquarters in Guinea's capital Conakry Saturday 18 Sept. 2010.

The United Nations says further delay in Guinea's presidential election could destabilize the region.   The heads of U.N. peacekeeping missions across West Africa issued a joint appeal for the swift conclusion of Guinea's return to civilian rule.  The second round of voting has been postponed twice and prospects for a vote on October 10 are slipping quickly.

There are problems distributing voting material.  The leading candidate in the run-off, former prime minister Cellou Diallo, also objects to the new head of the electoral commission, who he says favors electoral rival Alpha Conde.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's special representative in West Africa Said Djinit says the U.N. appealed to the leaders of Guinea, and the two candidates in particular, to do all they can to overcome the current difficulties surrounding the leadership of the election commission and to create conditions under which the country can quickly organize the second round of presidential voting in peace and security.  He says the aim is to have elections that are accepted by everyone and enable Guinea to begin a new era of democracy and economic and political reconstruction.

West Africa is largely peaceful now, and the United Nations wants to keep it that way.  Voters in Ivory Coast hope to go to the polls next month for a much-delayed presidential vote.  Liberia and Nigeria hold presidential elections next year and Sierra Leone the following year.  It is a busy electoral schedule for West Africa that the U.N. special representatives say could be a factor of instability and a threat to social peace.

"Sierra Leone, as you may know, has a long border with Guinea, and the people of both countries share cultural, ethnic, and various commonalities," said Berhanemeskel Nega, the U.N. deputy special representative for Sierra Leone. "And anything which happens in Guinea, affects directly Sierra Leone positively or negatively.  So we are watching all these developments."

Diallo's campaign says electoral rules must be respected and further delay could threaten outside investment in Guinea.  Conde's campaign says problems from the first round must be corrected before voters can have confidence in the results of a second round.

Djinnit says it is a process complicated by Guinea's poor political history.

He adds that it is a long process because Guinea has been in crisis since its independence 50 years ago.  It has never had a democratic, multi-party election before this one.

Acting military ruler General Sekouba Konate is trying to return Guinea to civilian rule nearly two years after a military coup.  General Konate has repeatedly reaffirmed his support for the electoral process, but even he appears to be losing patience, telling French radio that, if necessary, he will install a civilian in charge of the country by force.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology 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.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

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