EU observers assess Madagascar elections

Polling stations have been opened at 6 AM local time (03:00 GMT) and closed at 5PM (14:00 GMT).  Despite long queues, no anomalies were detected in the polls, according to the head of the European Union’s observer mission, Cristian Dan Preda.

According to the country’s electoral commission, the CENI, turnout was around 40 percent.

Incumbent President Hery Rajaonarimampianina has many competitors, including  four former presidents seeking for a mandate,  however his two main challengers are both former heads of state: Marc Ravalomanana and Andry Rajoelina.

All three major competitors have crisscrossed the island in a chase for votes and each has pledged to accelerate recovery for an economy the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts will grow at more than five percent this year, its highest rate in a decade.

Civil society groups accuse three wealthy front runners of profiting from politics,  all candidates vehemently deny.

EU delegation led by Member of European Parliament Cristian Dan Preda (Romania, EPP) will address press on Friday, 9 November to conclude the work of the EU monitoring  mission.

The European Union is one of the largest donors of the official development assistance in Madagascar, with the European Development Fund (EDF) being the main financial instrument. For the period 2014-2020, an indicative amount of € 518 million has been set. Its main objective is to fight against poverty, through the strengthening of good governance and the promotion of a sustainable economy.

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