Date set for Ivory Coast runoff

2010-11-08 09:03
Abidjan - Ivory Coast's constitutional council certified results from last weekend's presidential election despite calls for a recount, setting the stage for what is expected to be a tense runoff vote on November 21.

Opposition front-runner Alassane Ouattara and other challengers to President Laurent Gbagbo had urged authorities to hold a recount of ballots from the October 31 poll, citing irregularities they say led to hundreds of thousands of votes being tallied inaccurately.

But council president Paul Yao N'Dre - who is a member of Gbagbo's ruling party - announced the certified result in a statement broadcast on national television late on Saturday, making no changes to the provisional outcome released during the week. N'Dre also said the second round would be held on November 21, a week earlier than expected.

Ouattara's communications adviser, Massere Toure, declined to comment on the news. She said Ouattara's party will be meeting on Monday to determine its strategy.

Gbagbo came in first place in last weekend's election, which was the country's first in a decade. He won just over 38 percent of the vote, compared to about 32% for Ouattara - both short of the simple majority needed to avoid a second round.

Forged affidavits

Henri Konan Bedie, who was ousted in the country's first coup in 1999, came in third. Before the poll, he had pledged to support Ouattara if there is a runoff. Amid calls for a recount, though, it's unclear whether Bedie will stick to the pledge and unclear how many of his supporters would heed it even if he does. Bedie's support will be crucial for Ouattara and the second round is expected to be a close race.

The charges of irregularities further polarised an already tense runoff that could restore stability to the world's biggest cocoa producer after a decade of unrest.

The opposition coalition cited forged affidavits from polling stations, soldiers voting multiple times and party representatives being barred from the central counting station in Abidjan where national results were tabulated.

"All these irregularities led to the loss of hundreds of thousands of votes for the" Gbagbo's opponents, said opposition coalition spokesperson Djedje Mady.

International observers said in their preliminary reports they had detected no fraud, and cited only minor irregularities.

The ballot was the country's first since civil war split Ivory Coast in two, leaving rebels in control of the north. The country officially reunited in a 2007 peace deal, but deep tensions remain.

Act of conspiracy

Powerful militia run loose in the largely lawless west, ex-rebels are still armed in the north, and political parties are backed by hardcore youth militants ready to take to the streets if things don't go their way.

Bedie was the first to call for a re-count on Wednesday night, just before the final results were announced, but it was clear that he would not advance.

Groups of young Bedie supporters have been protesting in the streets outside his party headquarters ever since.

Also on Saturday, officials said Gbagbo had recalled his ambassador from Senegal after accusing President Abdoulaye Wade of interference in Ivorian domestic politics after he hosted Ouattara on Thursday. Senegalese officials denied the accusation of interference and did not comment on the visit.

"The visit was an act of conspiracy and interference," said presidential diplomatic adviser Alicide Djedje. "We have information indicating that it was an attempt to destabilise Ivory Coast."

- AP
Read more on:    alassane ouattara  |  abdoulaye wade  |  henri konan bedie  |  laurent gbagbo  |  ivory coast  |  west africa

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Inside News24


Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go! - shop online today

Save up to 40% on outdoor accessories!

Tents, sleeping, day packs and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Month End Madness Sale!

Save up to 60% on across a wide range of goods from books to electronics, DVDs and many more. Sale end 31 January 2015. Shop now!

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


There is a tendency to be too fixed on a set way of doing things today. You may get challenged and the best approach is to keep more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.