Accessibility links

Breaking News

Polls Close in Botswana's General Election

Polling officers verify ballots from ballot boxes arriving at a counting center in the Ledumang Senior Secondary school for the Gaborone North constituency, in Gaborone, Oct. 23, 2019.

Voters in Botswana continued to line up late Wednesday to cast their ballots even after the polling stations had closed.

Independent Electoral Commission said the voters who managed to make it inside the polling places were being allowed to cast their ballots but those outside, even those in the lines, would not be allowed to vote.

The results will be announced within two days, the IEC said.

The Botswana Democratic Party, which has ruled the diamond-rich southern African nation since gaining independence from Britain in 1966, is facing a strong challenge from the opposition Umbrella for Democratic Change coalition, led by Duma Boko. The opposition has gotten a boost from ex-President Ian Khama, who is feuding with President Mokgweetsi Masisi.

Masisi was Khama's hand-picked successor when the latter stepped down last year, but the two split over Masisi's policies, including a decision to scrap a ban on elephant hunting imposed by Khama.

About 925,000 registered voters in a country of over two million are voting for 57 members of the National Assembly, who will choose the president.