Presidential elections took place on 24 November in the West African nation of Guinea-Bissau. They are expected to bring an end to the country’s instability that began in 2015.
Two former prime ministers will compete in a runoff on 29 December, the electoral commission has announced. Domingos Simões Pereira, representing the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC), topped the election with 40%. Umaro Cissoko Embalo, who represents Madem, an opposition party composed of PAIGC rebels, is second with 28%.
Incumbent President José Mário Vaz failed to advance to the second round, receiving 12% of the vote. He is the first president in 25 years to reach the end of his corruption-shaken mandate without being forced out in a military coup.
The European Union hailed the “peaceful, orderly and transparent conduct of the elections” confirmed by international observers and national civil society monitors, and promised to continue to follow the situation closely, as well as work with regional and international partners “to ensure the consolidation of democracy in the country”.
“It is important that all actors respect the next steps in the electoral process and the agreed Code of Conduct. Any possible complaints should be resolved by legal means”, the EU stated.
Following years of political instability, the country’s main challenges include poverty, corruption, drug trafficking, and improvements in health care and education. Another round of campaigning will kick off 13 December.
Source: New Europe