Guinea Bissau losing presidential candidate condemns vote as fraudulent

2020-01-04 20:01
Domingos Simoes Pereira, the presidential candidate for the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAICG), votes at a polling station during the second round of the presidential election in Bissau, on December 29, 2019.

Domingos Simoes Pereira, the presidential candidate for the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAICG), votes at a polling station during the second round of the presidential election in Bissau, on December 29, 2019. (SEYLLOU / AFP)

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Guinea Bissau's losing presidential candidate on Saturday said the number of ballot papers cast in two rounds of voting exceeded registered voters by tens of thousands, a day after appealing to the Supreme Court to annul the result.

Domingos Simoes Pereira has already rejected the result, telling party activists on Wednesday the vote was "full of irregularities, annulment and manipulation".

Pereira, who heads the historic ruling party PAIGC, told a news conference on Saturday, the number of ballot papers exceeded those registered by 30,000.

"The results announced by the National Electoral Commission do not correspond to what happened at the ballot boxes," he said.

Some 700,000 voters registered for the presidential election in the former Portuguese colony.

Pereira received 46.45 percent of the votes in last week's presidential runoff, trailing opposition leader Umaro Sissoco Embalo's 53.55 percent.

The PAIGC on Friday filed an appeal against the election result to the Supreme Court, which judges will consider on Monday.

Pereira said that votes "were changed" to favour Embalo.

"The people must have a guarantee that the one who presides over their destiny is the one they actually voted for," he added, appearing visibly annoyed.

Neighbouring countries had been hoping for a smooth transition of power in the chronically unstable country.

Since independence from Portugal in 1974, Guinea-Bissau has been through four coups as well as 16 attempted, plotted or alleged coups.

The PAIGC -- the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC) -- is rooted in a Marxist-Leninist movement that fought to end Portuguese rule.

It is the largest party in the parliament, having won legislative elections in March.

President-elect Embalo, from the Madem party, was in neighbouring Senegal on Saturday to meet the country's president, Macky Sall.

Read more on:    guinea bissau
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