Former Malagasy head of state Andry Rajoelina on Saturday promised a clear victory in the presidential election, according to partial results, but the camp of his rival Marc Ravalomana shouted at fraud and “manipulations” “.
The latest count published in the afternoon by the Electoral Commission (Ceni) after counting more than 3.5 million ballots, for an estimated participation of just under 5 million voters, credited Mr. Rajoelina with 55, 7%.
Ravalomanana won 44.2% of the vote, according to the figures for almost three quarters of the polling stations.
The complete provisional results, before any appeal before the Constitutional High Court, should be made public by Ceni around Christmas.
“We are still waiting for the full results of the Ceni but I believe that the current results are irreversible,” said AFP a close friend of Andry Rajoelina, former Minister Hajo Andrianainarivelo. “Victory is ours !”
The other side categorically rejected the partial results.
“According to the minutes that have reached us, it is Marc Ravalomanana who is in the lead,” pleaded AFP Fanirisoa Erinaivo, a candidate battered in the first round who joined his lap. “The Ceni only releases the minutes where Rajoelina is in the lead,” she added, “we fear manipulation”.
According to his entourage, Marc Ravalomanana should speak Sunday night on the situation.
For weeks, the electoral duel between the two former heads of state feeds tensions in the country, accustomed to political crises since its independence from France in 1960.
By the evening of the second round on Wednesday, the two candidates had proclaimed their victory in front of their supporters and have since accused each other of fraud.
After the publication of the first trends Thursday, Marc Ravalomanana himself denounced to AFP “massive fraud” and warned that he would respect the results of the ballot “if they correspond to reality”.
Sure of their victory, Andry Rajoelina and his entourage had also accused their rival of “manipulations” and challenged him to prove his allegations.
– “Transparent balloting” –
The head of the mission of the observers of the European Union (EU) coldly beat their assertions assuring Friday not to have found significant irregularities.
“The Malagasy voted in a peaceful atmosphere in a transparent and well-organized poll,” said Cristian Preda.
“Even before the first round, the candidates talked about massive fraud, we did not see them in the field … We have to tell them, if you see them, that the campaign is over,” he said. he added, ironically, “I hope that calm will come once the results are very clear”.
In the same vein, the African Union (AU) congratulated the “two candidates, the whole political class and the Malagasy people who, despite the differences (…) were able to show restraint”.
In the first round, Rajoelina had already won with 39.23% of the vote, against 35.35% to his opponent.
Andry Rajoelina, a 44-year-old ex-advertising and disc jockey, has a fierce rivalry with 69-year-old Marc Ravalomanana, who has made his fortune as head of a dairy group since the 2009 crisis.
Elected president in 2002, Ravalomanana was then forced to resign in the face of a wave of violent protests fomented by Rajoelina, recently elected mayor of the capital Antananarivo.
The latter was then installed by the army at the head of a transitional presidency he left in 2014.
The two men had been banned from running for president in 2013 as part of a post-crisis agreement approved by the international community.
For several weeks, the very personal trick taken by the duel between Andry Rajoelina and Marc Ravalomanana and the enormous financial means they have engaged feed fears of trouble in the proclamation of results.
Their account-balancing campaign largely overshadowed the country’s bottom line, one of the poorest on the African continent. According to the World Bank, 75 percent of its 25 million people live on less than $ 2 a day.
Source: Seychelles News Agency