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Politics

CPP wins Kumbungu by-election

Candidate of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) in the Kumbungu by-election held on Tuesday, Moses Amadu Yahaya, emerged victorious.

The by-election was instanced by the abdication of the seat by Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni, who was appointed earlier this year to serve as the Secretary-General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States.

Yahaya, 61, polled 13,029 votes to beat favourite Alhaji Imoro Yakubu Kakpagu of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

Alhaji Kakpagu polled 11,896 votes out of a total of 39,478 registered voters in the Constituency.

A third candidate, Ahmed Nasiru Mohammed, represented the People’s Progressive Party (PPP). He polled 228 votes to come third.

Rejected ballots numbered 634.

Voter turn-out was 55 per cent.

Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Chavez heir wins Venezuela election

Socialist Nicolas Maduro, hand-picked successor of the late leader Hugo Chavez, has won a narrow victory in Venezuela’s presidential poll.

Mr Maduro won 50.7% of the vote against 49.1% for opposition candidate Henrique Capriles.

Mr Capriles has demanded a recount, saying Mr Maduro was now “even more loaded with illegitimacy”.

He said there were more than 300,000 incidents from Sunday’s poll that would need to be examined.

The electoral commission said the results were “irreversible”.

When the results were announced at 23:15 (03:45 GMT), celebrations erupted in the capital, Caracas, where Mr Maduro’s jubilant supporters set off fireworks and blasted car horns. Opposition voters banged pots and pans in protest.

In a victory speech outside the presidential palace, Mr Maduro, wearing the colours of the Venezuelan flag, told crowds that the result was “just, legal and constitutional”.

He said his election showed Hugo Chavez “continues to be invincible, that he continues to win battles”.

Mr Maduro said he had spoken to Mr Capriles on the phone, and that he would allow an audit of the election result.

He called for those who had not voted for him to “work together” for the country.

But Mr Maduro’s margin of victory was far narrower than that achieved by Chavez at elections last October, when he beat Mr Capriles by more than 10%.

At Mr Capriles’ campaign headquarters the mood was sombre, as his supporters watched the results on television. Some cried, while others hung their heads in dismay,

Shortly afterwards, Mr Capriles emerged, angry and defiant.

“It is the government that has been defeated,” he said. Then, addressing Mr Maduro directly, he said: “The biggest loser today is you. The people don’t love you.”

Divisive legacy

Mr Maduro had been serving as acting president since Mr Chavez died of cancer on 5 March.

He is due to be sworn in on 19 April and serve until January 2019 to complete the six-year term that Mr Chavez would have begun in January.

Mr Chavez was a divisive leader. To his supporters he was the reforming president whose idiosyncratic brand of socialism defeated the political elite and gave hope to the poorest Venezuelans.

He effectively used his country’s vast oil reserves to boost Venezuela’s international clout, and his strident criticism of the US won him many political allies in Latin America.

However, his political opponents accused him of being an autocrat, intent on building a one-party state.

Mr Chavez bequeaths a nation beset by crumbling infrastructure, unsustainable public spending and under-performing industry.

Source: BBC

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Politics

Mornah wins Election Petition suit

General Secretary of the People’s National Convention (PNC) Bernard Mornah has won a writ he filed at the Supreme Court challenging an earlier ruling that hearing on election disputes must be a daily affair.

Mr Mornah was seeking to annul portions of CI 74 which, he says, were inconsistent with the 1992 Constitution.

The PNC scribe argued that provisions in CI 74 contravene Articles 133, 157, 93(2) and 11 of the Constitution and that the CI must, on the basis of that contravention, be declared null and void.

The Court ruled on Tuesday that it was unconstitutional to sit on holidays and has also given parties in election disputes a right to appeal verdicts.

Speaking to TV3’s Thomas Adotei Pappoe moments after the verdict, Mr Mornah commended his legal team for winning this case, adding: “It doesn’t matter anyone who loses because any one can enjoy the full lengths of the law.”

“It is victory for me and victory for you too because you would have been here tomorrow [on May Day] if the law had not been changed,” he told Thomas Pappoe concerning hearing of election disputes on statutory public holidays.

Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Kenyatta wins Kenyan presidency

Kenya’s Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta has been confirmed as the winner of the presidential election.

Mr Kenyatta won 50.07% of the vote on a turnout of 86%, officials said, narrowly avoiding a run-off ballot.

However, his main rival, PM Raila Odinga, alleged voting irregularities and is expected to file a challenge.

Mr Kenyatta is also set to face trial at the International Criminal Court in The Hague over violence that followed Kenya’s 2007 elections.

He is accused of fuelling the communal violence that saw more than 1,000 people killed and 600,000 forced from their homes.

Technical glitches

The IEBC said the latest elections had been complex and difficult but also credible and transparent.

It said the turnout was the largest ever.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Issack Hassan said that Kenyans had voted “calmly, patiently, proudly and peacefully in the full glare of whole world”.

Announcing the final vote count, he said: “I therefore declare Uhuru Kenyatta the duly elected president of the Republic of Kenya.”

Mr Hassan praised the candidates who had already conceded defeat and urged others to follow suit.

However, one of Mr Odinga’s aides – speaking before the announcement – said the candidate had “no intention” of conceding defeat.

Salim Lone told the Daily Nation newspaper: “The level of the failures in the system makes it very difficult to believe it was a credible result.”

Both candidates have complained of irregularities during the course of the count, since Monday’s election.

Mr Kenyatta won 6,173,433 votes out of a total of 12,330,028.

Mr Kenyatta’s Jubilee Coalition party said it was “proud and honoured for the trust” bestowed on it, adding that it had taken a message to the people and that “we are grateful to the people of Kenya for accepting this message”.

Early on Saturday, small groups of Kenyatta supporters celebrated in Nairobi, hooting car horns and singing.

Court process

But the newly confirmed president could face difficult relations with Western countries.

He faces trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in July for crimes against humanity.

Mr Kenyatta’s running mate, William Ruto, also faces similar charges. Both men deny the accusations.

The ICC has agreed to postpone Mr Ruto’s trial by a month until May after his lawyers complained of not having enough time to prepare his defence.

Countries including the US and UK have hinted that Mr Kenyatta’s election as president would have consequences for their relations with Kenya – comments which have been dismissed in Nairobi as unwanted foreign interference in domestic matters.

Kenya’s new electronic voting system was designed to eliminate the chance of vote-rigging and with it any risk of a repeat of the post-poll violence of 2007.

But the count has been plagued with technical glitches, including a programming error that led to the number of rejected votes being multiplied by a factor of eight.

The prime minister’s Cord alliance had earlier complained that votes from 11 constituencies were missing, in effect leaving him more than 250,000 votes short.

Both men passed a second condition needed for victory – at least 25% of the vote in more than half of the 47 counties.

Source: BBC

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Politics

Grenada opposition wins clean sweep in general election

Preliminary results of the general election on the Caribbean island of Grenada suggest a landslide win for the opposition New National Party (NNP).

Election supervisors said the preliminary figures showed the NNP had won all 15 seats.

The governing National Democratic Congress admitted defeat.

If the results are confirmed, Keith Mitchell, who served three terms as prime minister between 1995 and 2008, will return to power.

The main theme during the election was the economic crisis.

Grenada has a 30% unemployment rate and the Caribbean Development Bank recently warned Grenada that it had unsustainable debt levels.

During his campaign, Mr Mitchell promised to make job creation his priority.

After the preliminary results came in, catapulting his party from four seats to 15, he said he would also strive to unite the country.

“The victor is the one who has to reach out, the one who lost can’t be expected to reach out; national unity will be a serious platform,” he said.

He asked Grenadians “to have patience” with the new government, and to give it a chance to implement policies he said would revive the stalled economy.

The country has been struggling to recover from major destruction caused by Hurricane Ivan in 2004.

Dozens of people were killed and 90% of the island’s buildings were destroyed. Grenada’s main export crop, nutmeg, was also devastated.


Source: BBC

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Politics

George Weah wins Liberia senate seat

The former football star George Weah has won a landslide victory in Liberia’s senate elections, in polls disrupted by the Ebola outbreak.

Mr Weah got 78% of the vote for the Montserrado county seat, which includes the capital Monrovia.

He beat Robert Sirleaf, the son of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who took nearly 11%.

Low turnout in the poll, which was first planned for October, was blamed on concerns about Ebola.

Strict health controls were in place to try to prevent the spread of the disease.

Those who came to polling stations had their temperature taken, were told to stand a metre (3ft) apart and wash their hands before and after voting.

Liberia has been one of the countries worst affected by Ebola, with almost 3,400 deaths, the UN says.

Other winners in the senate elections include Jewel Howard-Taylor, the ex-wife of the jailed former president Charles Taylor, and the former rebel leader Prince Johnson. Both retained their seats.

The National Elections Commission chairman, Jerome Korkoya, called the conclusion of the vote “the end of a crucial journey”.

Mr Weah won the first round of the 2005 presidential election, losing the runoff to Ms Johnson-Sirleaf.

He is the only African to be named Fifa’s world player of the year, winning in 1995.

Source: BBC