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US Threatens ‘Individuals’ Repressing Africa’s Democratic Process1 minute read

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The United States’ Secretary of State, Michael Pompeo, has said the US government will take action against African leaders who are choking efforts to enhance democracy on the continent.

Pompeo’s warning came via a statement on Friday. He noted that several African leaders had refused to uphold principles of democracy.

He said: “We will watch closely the actions of individuals who interfere in the democratic process and will not hesitate to consider consequences, including visa restrictions for those responsible for election-related violence.

“As long-time partners to the nations of Africa, we care about the region’s democratic trajectory and are committed to working constructively with international and regional partners.

“The United States is committed to supporting free, fair, inclusive elections. The conduct of elections is important not only for Africans but also for defenders of democracy around the world.

“We believe all sides should participate peacefully in the democratic process. Repression and intimidation have no place in democracies.”

The statement comes days after President Emmerson Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe said that the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is discussing the importance of foreign observers in local elections.

He made the remarks after Malawi “successfully” held elections without foreign observers due to the coronavirus pandemic which blocked travelling.

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Inconsistencies In Guinea’s Presidential Election Results Worrisome – US

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The US has expressed concern over “inconsistencies” in preliminary results of Guinea’s presidential election.

In a statement, the US embassy spoke of a “lack of transparency in vote tabulations and inconsistencies between the announced results and tally sheets results from polling stations”.

Guinea’s 82-year-old leader Alpha Condé won a controversial third term in office, according to preliminary results, amid violent protests across the country.

The US has urged all parties to peacefully resolve electoral disputes through established institutions. It said it supported diplomatic efforts by the West African regional bloc, Ecowas, the African Unions and the UN.

The main opposition leader, Cellou Dalein Diallo, had declared himself winner and was prevented from leaving his house until Wednesday when he said the security officers outside his home had been withdrawn.

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Tanzania Election: Mwinyi Becomes 8th President of Zanzibar

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The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party’s presidential candidate in Zanzibar, Hussein Mwinyi, has won the presidency of the semi-autonomous state, beating 14 other candidates.

Mwinyi polled 76.27 per cent of the vote which was equivalent to 380,402 votes.

His rival Maalim Seif Sharif of the Alliance for Change and Transparency (ACT) was arrested while trying to vote on Tuesday before being released hours later.

Mr Mwinyi is the son of Ali Hassan Mwinyi who served as the second President of the United Republic of Tanzania from 1985 to 1995.

Zanzibar has a history of contested polls, including in 2015 when they were annulled for not being free and fair. The opposition boycotted the re-run and the CCM party’s candidate was declared the winner.

Ali Mohammed Shein is now stepping down after serving two five-year terms in office.

Zanzibar had 566,352 registered voters with 498,786 turning up at the polling stations on Wednesday October 28, a number that was equivalent to 88.07 per cent.

Mwinyi becomes the eighth President of Zanzibar since the revolution in 1964.

He has called on all the other contestants to come together to build one Zanzibar because as citizens they will need each other to build a prosperous Zanzibar.

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Senegal’s President Sall Dissolves Government

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Macky Sall - Re-elected President of Senegal

Senegalese President Macky Sall has dissolved his 32-strong government team with immediate effect.

Sall signed a decree to terminate the functions of all ministers and state secretaries, the presidency said in a statement late on Wednesday.

Presidential spokesman, Abdou Latif Coulibaly said Sall had signed a decree to that effect but gave neither a reason for the move nor a date for the formation of a new cabinet.

In separate decrees, he also dismissed the president of the economic, social and environmental council, the minister of state and the secretary-general of the government.

Extending his clearing of the decks further, Sall also dismissed another former prime minister Aminata Toure from her post as chair of the country’s economic, social and environmental council (CESE).

Toure, a former justice minister, is believed to harbour presidential ambitions.

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