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Senegal : second round ballot for presidential election

Senegal : second round ballot for presidential election
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The presidential race in Senegal will go to a second round with no candidate heading for an outright majority. There will now be a run off between the two leading opponents.

Incumbent Abdoulaye Wade – seeking a third term – still leads the race but is well short of the 50 per cent he needs to return to office. He and his supporters face what one aide described as, “a tough contest” against his nearest rival and former ally, Macky Sall.

Sall has polled around 25 percent in the ballot which was held on Sunday. Results from around half the polling stations are known.

The EU’s 90-member observation mission has questioned the delays in publishing the results as
Cristian Dan Preda, head of the delegation of European parliamentarians explained. “It’s completely regrettable that this lack of information is fuelling tension and suspicion. The administration would gain a lot of transparency if it started publishing in real time the information that it has at its disposal. In the internet era it’s unconceivable that the Senegalese will need to wait until Friday to know the official results”.

Criticism too has been aimed at Wade who brushed aside charges that he was in breach of the constitution by seeking a third term. Weeks of protests in the normally peaceful country in which at least six people died preceded the ballot.