U.N. voices concern over delay to Guinea election results

Drum in Guinea
Guinea Vote at Risk

By Saliou Samb


CONAKRY (Reuters) - The United Nations and the international community on Sunday called upon Guinea's electoral commission to publish results of a September 28 election aimed at completing a transition to democracy, saying it was concerned over the delay.

Disputes over a published partial count have held up the final result and raised fears of a resurgence of violence that killed 

about 50 people before the vote.


The opposition is calling for the election to be annulled, dampening hopes for an end to years of instability since a 2008 military coup that deterred investment in the world's largest bauxite exporter.


The United Nations and representatives of the international community including the West African regional bloc ECOWAS, the European Union and the International Organisation of the Francophonie, which brokered a deal with the opposition to end protests and allow the legislative vote, said they were concerned by delays in the publication of the results.


Guinea's "National Election Commission should make every effort to complete the tabulation of preliminary election results for publication in any event before Eid al-Adha," the Muslim feast on Tuesday, said the statement issued by the United Nations and the other entities.


It called upon political parties and the election commission to cooperate in publishing results from the Matoto district in the capital Conakry, one of the country's biggest, which both sides claim to have won.


Partial results from 37 of the country's 38 electoral districts show President Alpha Conde's ruling RPG party leads with 53 seats, opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo's UFDG has 38 seats and former Prime Minister Sidya Toure's UFR has 9.


No party is expected to win an outright majority in the 114-seat parliament, and parties are expected to try to form coalitions after the results are known.


Opposition groups, which have rejected the partial results, last week pulled their representatives out of the election's organizing commission, calling for the vote to be annulled.


"Everyone knows that the opposition won all the five districts of Conakry including Matoto. In that district, we are ahead with over 2,000 votes," Toure told Reuters on Sunday.


The ruling party, however, disputed the opposition claims, arguing that it has requested the vote to be recounted because several result sheets where not included in the count.

(Writing by Bate Felix; Editing by Tom Pfeiffer and Mohammad Zargham)

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