Posted: Sunday 24th February 2013 at 1:17 am

Guinea opposition pulls out of May vote

From L: Guinea's opposition leaders attend a rally on February 18, 2013 in Conakry.  By Cellou Binani (AFP/File)

From L: Guinea’s opposition leaders attend a rally on February 18, 2013 in Conakry. By Cellou Binani (AFP/File)






CONAKRY (AFP) – The leading opposition parties in Guinea announced Saturday they were pulling out of May 12 parliamentary polls, accusing the ruling party and the electoral body of turning the vote into a farce.

“The opposition political parties have decided to withdraw from the electoral process which is supposed to lead the country to the legislative elections,” senior opposition figure and former minister Aboubacar Sylla told reporters in Conakry.

He was speaking in the name of three coalitions representing the bulk of the restive west African country’s opposition.

“We have observed that the electoral has veered completely off track,” Sylla said.

“The electoral commission, set up under the authority of the president (Alpha Conde), is neither impartial nor neutral and is systematically violating every constitutional provision, even its own internal regulations,” he added.

Thousands of opposition supporters marched in the streets of Conakry on February 18 to demand fair transparent elections and protest against the South African company selected to revise the electoral roll.

The vote was due to have taken place in 2011 and has been postponed several times already.

Sylla said more peaceful marches would be organised on February 27 and 28 in a bid to force the electoral commission to drop South African company WayMark and allow the diaspora to vote.


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