Guinea Election Fraud Complaint 'Must Wait for Final Tally'


Guinea's electoral commission said on Tuesday it would not consider accusations of electoral fraud by the country's main opposition until a final tally of votes cast on September 28 was finished.

"If they (the opposition parties) have results they want to contest, we don't know anything about it," said the commission's top lawyer, Amadou Kebe.

"Once we have the votes and they are confirmed by (the commission), only then can we deal with complaints," Kebe said.

An opposition spokesman said Monday it had "alarming reports" of votes being counted multiple times in southern Guinea, overseen by the army, and of "parallel commissions" being set up to falsify voting tallies from polling stations in the cities of Kankan and Siguiri.

But balance sheets with results from certain districts were still being transported from polling booths on Tuesday, a separate source from Guinea's electoral commission told Agence France Presse Tuesday.

"We have not yet received all the tallies," the source said, without providing a date for the publication of provisional results, or for final figures to be published by the Supreme Court.

Under Guinea's election law, the supreme court has to rubberstamp the final results within 10 days of polls closing.

Former prime minister and opposition spokesman Sidya Toure said Monday his Union of Republican Forces would "not accept" the results of "election tampering".

"If no correction is made, we will denounce the voting process and decide on further action," he said.

The commission had said it would publish "partial and provisional" results on Monday and Tuesday before releasing full preliminary results on Wednesday, but they have so far failed to materialize.

"This is a critical period, and the longer it lasts, the more worrying it is," said Mamadou Alio Barry, president of the national observatory for democracy and human rights.

"Even if there is no tampering, the party that loses will say it is because (the other) cheated," he said.

Barry criticized the "amateurism" of the electoral commission, which he said should have given some indication of voting patterns by Tuesday.

Guineans were registered to vote for among 1,700 candidates vying for 114 seats on September 28 in a national assembly that will replace the transitional body that has run the country since military rule came to an end in 2010.

Meanwhile, the coalition led by President Alpha Conde's Rally of the Guinean People (RPG), was poised to claim victory, but said it would not publish unofficial results and would only confirm "significant breakthroughs".

Before the election, the opposition had accused head of the electoral commission, Bakary Fofana, of being too close to the government and redrawing districts in their favor.

The polls, originally due within six months of the swearing-in of President Alpha Conde in 2010, had been delayed amid disputes over organization, stoking deadly ethnic tensions that have dogged Guinean politics since the country's independence from France in 1958.

The voting passed peacefully, but the final days of campaigning were marred by violence between government and opposition activists which saw more than 70 people wounded and a trainee policeman killed.

Comments 0