Vote counting is underway in Sierra Leone following Saturday’s presidential and parliamentary poll. Turnout was as high as 55 percent in the first general election in the country since UN peacekeepers withdrew two-years-ago. There had been tension prior to the vote but police reported no serious incidents. The election was only the second since Sierra Leone emerged from a decade-long civil war which killed an estimated 50,000 people.
Vice-President and a ruling party candidate Soloman Berewa is considered favourite but he faces a challenge from opposition party leader Ernest Bai Koroma. Despite progress since the end of the conflict in 2002 analysts believe that the root causes of the war corruption, poverty and unemployment remain. Full results are due within 12-days.