Provisional results from the presidential election in the Central African Republic have confirmed a surprise early lead for former Prime Minister Faustin Archange Touadera.
A former maths teacher as well as a politician, Touadera is considered an outsider by many analysts.
Thirty candidates contested the poll, which is likely to go to a run-off between the top two on 31 January.
Touadera was prime minister in the government of ex-President Francois Bozize, ousted in 2013 by mainly Muslim Seleka rebels.
The UN peacekeeping mission in the CAR has hailed the election as a “success”.
#Centrafrique:Les résultats provisoires du scrutin à Bangui place F.Touadera à la tête https://t.co/POM0aKBvtH#CARcrisis— RJDH-RCA (@RJDH_RCA) January 2, 2016
FranceBangui</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/RFI">RFI