Ivory Coast: Ouattara Emerges As President For Second Term

Ivory Coast: Ouattara Emerges As President For Second Term

Patrick Aigbokhan

Ivorian President, Alassane Ouattara, has again emerged President of Ivory Coast following the results released from the just conluded presidential election in the country.
Ouattara, 73, won the second five-year term after wining about 84 percent of ballots in the first round of the polls on Sunday.
He emerged winner of the election despite calls for a boycott by opposition candidates.
Ouattara, who is said to have been widely tipped to win, has been credited with reviving the economy of the war-scarred country, the world’s leading cocoa producer, but also accused of creeping authoritarianism.
Pascal Affi N’Guessan, his main challenger was ex-prime minister who won just 9.3 percent of ballots and ran on behalf of the Ivorian Popular Front — the party of former leader Laurent Gbagbo.
Ouattara defeated Gbagbo in 2010 but the then president refused to concede defeat, sparking a wave of violence which left around 3,000 people dead.
The pro-Ouattara forces eventually defeated Gbagbo, with the backing of the UN and France, who dragged him from a bunker under the presidential residence where he had hidden for days.
Currently, he is awaiting trial before the International Criminal Court in the Hague for crimes against humanity over atrocities committed in the five-month conflict.
Observers have reportedly questioned whether people would head to the polls after the violence, but According to report, Ivory Coast’s electoral commission said 54.6 percent of those eligible had voted.
The process won praise from observers as being fair and peaceful and the president of the national electoral commission, the CEI, said that after the vote “the crisis of 2010 is behind us”.
It was reported that, before the official results were announced, the National Coalition for Change (CNC), which represents two presidential candidates, had put the turnout figure at 20 percent, calling the vote a “parody”.
Ouattara had reportedly said a high turnout would be key to cementing his mandate for another five-year term from the 23 million people registered to vote across the country.
It was reported, the streets of the economic capital were quiet early on Wednesday after news of the results, in stark contrast to the violence that plagued Abidjan after the last vote, when 34,000 troops including 6,000 UN peacekeepers were deployed to secure the streets.
Ouattara is said to have come under criticism over his alleged role in the post-2010 electoral violence and in the lead-up to the latest vote.