Developing Story: Bashir Retains Presidency
A top official of Sudan’s National Electoral Commission says after “unanticipated delays”, the electoral body will announce the final results of the presidential election Monday.
Media advisor, Abu Bakr Waziri said the electoral commission is pleased with the success of organizing Sudan’s first democratic elections in 24 years.
“Sunday at 3 o’clock, they announced in the evening most of the (results) of the government in the south (with) only five remaining, and we are expecting them this evening. Tomorrow (Monday) by 3 o’clock, we are hoping to announce the final presidential election results in Sudan,” he said.
Waziri said Sudan’s National Electoral Commission (NEC) was able to organize a free fair and impartial election despite criticism that the vote failed to meet international standards.
In their preliminary reports, poll observers from the United States based Carter Center as well as the European Union stated that Sudan’s general elections failed to meet international standards.
But NEC said the assessment was fair, especially when the vote was Sudan’s first in 24 years after decades of civil war.
Waziri said despite the criticisms, the election was peaceful.
“Till this afternoon, we haven’t witnessed any kind of violence, public disorder or any kind of incitement to violence. The response for the participation of the voters was very high. It was about 85 percent out of those who were registered -- 16 million. So the response is great,” Waziri said.
He also said that the electoral commission was able to educate voters about what he called a “complicated” voting process ahead of the vote, adding that the election went well.
There were reports however that the electoral commission abandoned entering the election data into a safeguarded computer system, which could have justified the credibility of the vote.
But Waziri dismissed the reports as unfounded.
“It is actually a wrong news item published by a Reuters correspondent from Khartoum. We are using electronic tabulation (and) we did not give orders to anybody to stop that and to go to the manual one. We corrected this and we are about to call the Reuters man here… the news item was very harmful (to the election). We are still using the electronic tabulation,” Waziri said.
Preliminary results show incumbent president Omar Hassan al-Bashir and his National Congress Party will win the vote.
But opposition groups, including the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) and the UMMA party, boycotted the presidential election, claiming widespread irregularities.
Waziri maintains that the election was successful.
“After 24 years of no-election in Sudan, it was successful, and the participation was good. And it attracted the attention of the (entire) world. And many of the media were here to cover this process. It was successful,” Waziri said.