The first round of presidential elections in Mauritania took place on June 22nd.
“The European Union commends the high turnout at this poll held in a peaceful atmosphere and generally satisfactory conditions”.
“Still waiting for the final results, the European Union is concerned by the statements of some candidates and calls everyone to calm and restraint and to resort to legal channels for possible disputes” says the statement of the European External Action Service spokesperson.
Algerians went to streets calling on President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to leave office in the country’s biggest anti-government demonstrations since the Arab Spring eight years ago.
The protests started as peaceful but degenerated to some clashes between police and demonstrates broke out in capital Algiers near the presidential palace.
Several protesters and policemen were wounded during clashes in Algiers, state television said. Local sources reported around 60 wounded, and 45 detained.
Bouteflika (82) has not directly addressed the protesters. Last week the officials said he would travel to Geneva for medical checks. Fading health of the President has been central to debate about his capabilities to function, as he has almost disappeared from public view since he suffered a stroke (2013). Citizens rarely had an opportunity to see the wheel-chair bound, and visibly frail President, however the the country’s powerful clans prefer him to stay on as a guarantor of their might.
Incumbent President on Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari is an unequivocal leader of the election race according to the provisional results.
The results showed that incumbent President main rival, businessman and former vice president Atiku Abubakar, could no longer catch up.
The candidate with the most votes nationwide is declared winner as long as they have at least one-quarter of the vote in two-thirds of Nigeria’s 36 states and the capital Abuja, otherwise there is a run-off. Buhari has already secured enough votes to avoid a run-off vote the officials said.
Incumbent Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari (76) and his main opponent, businessman Atiku Abubakar (72) cast their ballots in presidential election voting after a week’s delay. The two candidates lead among more than 70 challengers.
The voting has started with an episode, animating social networks with a video depicting President Buhari checking his wife’s choice of the candidate.
Out of 84 million registered voters, 72.775 million Nigerians will be able to cast their ballots.
The materials include 707,892 ballot boxes and voting cubicles have been supplied. “We have accredited 120 domestic and 36 international observer groups, deploying accumulative number of 73,000 observers“, the Independent National Electoral Commission reported.
While casting his vote Atiku Abubakar said he would accept the elections outcome.
Sudan parliamentary committee mandated with amending the Constitution to allow President Omar al-Bashir to run for another mandate informed it would indefinitely postpone a meeting to draft these changes, state news agency SUNA reports.
The decision comes amid almost daily street protests since mid-December, initially sparked by rising food prices and cash shortages, against Al-Bashir’s three decades rule.
President Muhammadu Buhari said he was “deeply disappointed” but urged people to refrain from “civil disorder“, while he reacted upon the decision to postpone the vote announced by the electoral chief, Mr Yakubu, who said: “Our decision was entirely taken by the commission. It has nothing to do with security, nothing to do with political influence.”.
Yakubu insisted the delay was down to problems with the transportation of electoral materials – ballot papers and results sheets – to some regions of the country.
Main rival Atiku Abubakar called for patience but accused the administration of “anti-democratic acts“.
Election officials cited “logistical” reasons for delay in presidential and parliamentary polls.
Nigerian media reported about President’s Buhari decision to sack the INEC chairman Yakubu for the failure to organise the elections according tot he declared schedule.
Mallam Nasir El-Rufai – a poweful ally of Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari warned “people from overseas” who sought to intervene in the country’s election to be held in little over a week would go back in “body bags“.
“We are waiting for the persons who will come and intervene. They will go back in body bags because nobody will come to Nigeria and tell us how to run our country,” said El-Rufai.
The governor of the northern state of Kaduna, Nasir El-Rufai made the comments during a discussion programme on the Nigerian Television Authority when the subject of the international community’s role in elections was raised. It followed after an international reaction in support of a suspended Nigeria’s top judge.
“We have got that independence and we are trying to run our country as decently as possible,” El-Rufai added.
The talk about the role of foreign countries in elections was raised on the programme in which reference was made to concerns expressed by the European Union, the United States and the United Kingdom over the suspension of Walter Onnoghen over allegedly breaching asset-declaration rules.