Oh dear

December 4, 2010 § 3 Comments

This is a blog post in two halves. In the second half I am going to go through a number of elections we missed. I had preciously been rather suspicious of Wikipedia’s list of upcoming elections and had tried to find more official sources. However these have let me down a few times now so I’m going to use Wikipedia in future. In the meantime we’ve missed coverage of elections in the Comoros, Guam, Guinea, and Moldova. So I will go through what we’ve missed.

But first we need to talk about the Ivory Coast. This is very sad. As we discussed earlier, the run off election looked set to be very close between Alassane Ouattara, who is backed by the northern former rebels, and current President Laurent Gbagbo. The results were originally announced with Outtarra winning by 54% to 46% and he was duly sworn in as president, that should have been at the end of it.

Instead Gbagbo went to the supreme court, insisted many thousands of Outtara’s votes were fraudulent and got them to invalidate several thousand of Outtara’s votes – enough to overturn the result. Gbagbo has now been sworn in as president. Prime Minister Guillaume Soro, the leader of the rebel forces, has resigned in protest at the reversal and withdrawn his support for Gbagbo’s government and – whilst 7,000 UN troops are in the country to prevent a return to civil war – the conditions are now ripe for voilence to resume. Gunshots have already been heard in some areas.

It’s all very tense, and oh so avoidable.

Anyway here’s a round up of what we’ve missed:

Guam is an island in the pacific. It is an unincorporated territory of the USA, meaning the USA rules it but it can elect its own governor. This it did on the 2nd of November, the Republicans won.

The Comoros are a small archipelago of islands in the Indian Ocean. They had a first round presidential election on the 7th of November; the second round will be on December 26th.

In Comoros the three main islands take it in turns to supply a president. So last election the only candidates were from the island of Anjouan. This time round all the candidates will be from the island of Mohéli. This election is more interesting that most in that it follows the failed attempt of the Anoujouan President Ahmed Abdallah Sambi to extend his term. Whilst elections have tended to be non partisan in the past, Comoran politics seems to be moving towards a party system – or at very least towards pro and anti Sambi factions.

Elections are held in two rounds, in the first round only the people of the nominating island (Mohéli) vote. The top three then go on to a second round where the entire archipelago vote. Current vice president – and firm Sambi supporter – Ikililou Dhoinine won the most votes with 28%. Sambi’s support had at one point threatened to split into two factions but the other faction failed utterly to make an impact. Former Mohéli governor Mohamed Said Fazul came second with 23% of the vote and is now seen as the main opposition hope.

Controversially Abdou Djabir was awarded third place over Bianrifi Tarmidhi. Both have around 10% of the vote; Tarmidhi was originally awarded third place, but the courts stepped in and invalidated a crucial few hundred of his votes.

Guinea is a country in Africa. Politics has been chaotic since the death of President Conté in 2008, the instant resultant military coup, and the assassination of the head of the junta in 2009. A first round election was held in June of 2010 which resulted in the necessity for a runoff between RPG (a democratic opposition party) leader Alpha Condé and Cellou Dalein Diallo – leader of the UFDG (another party to oppose the coup, this party had links to Conté’s regime). The junta delayed the second round a number of times but when it finally went ahead, on November 7th, it was thought to be pleasantly free and fair. It was also very close but Condé edged it.

Finally Moldova had an election. World elections covered it on detail and there’s not much more to add, except it now seems that at last Moldova will be able to form a government.

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