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Senegal’s Bassirou Diomaye Faye takes early lead in presidential election | Elections Information


Opposition supporters take to streets in celebration however ruling coalition says a run-off can be wanted to find out the winner.

Supporters of Senegal’s presidential candidate Bassirou Diomaye Faye have taken to the streets of the capital, Dakar, in celebration as early outcomes from Sunday’s vote confirmed the opposition contender within the lead.

The celebrations got here as at the very least 5 of the 19 candidates within the race issued statements congratulating Faye on what they referred to as his victory.

However his principal rival from the ruling coalition, former Prime Minister Amadou Ba, mentioned the celebrations have been untimely.

“For our half, and contemplating the suggestions of the outcomes from our group of specialists, we’re sure that, within the worst case state of affairs, we’ll go to a run-off,” Ba’s marketing campaign mentioned in a press release.

There was no rapid remark from Faye.

Hundreds of thousands in Senegal passed off in Sunday’s vote to elect the nation’s fifth president. It adopted three years of unprecedented political turbulence that sparked violent antigovernment protests and buoyed assist for the opposition.

At stake is the potential finish of an administration led by outgoing President Macky Sall, who’s stepping down after a second time period marred by unrest over the prosecution of opposition chief Ousmane Sonko and issues that the president wished to increase his mandate previous the constitutional restrict.

The incumbent was not on the poll for the primary time in Senegal’s historical past. His ruling coalition picked 62-year-old Ba as its candidate.

Sonko, in jail till just lately, was disqualified from the race due to a defamation conviction. He’s backing Faye, the co-creator of his now-dissolved PASTEF celebration, who was additionally detained nearly a 12 months in the past on fees together with defamation and contempt of court docket.

An amnesty regulation handed this month allowed their launch days earlier than the vote.

He and his colleague Diomaye have campaigned collectively underneath the banner “Diomaye is Sonko”.

About 7.3 million individuals have been registered to vote within the nation of roughly 18 million. Turnout was at about 71 p.c, in keeping with state tv RTS.

Election day ran easily with no main incidents reported.

The primary set of tallies introduced on tv confirmed Faye had received nearly all of votes.

Jubilant crowds gathered in Sonko’s neighbourhood in Dakar, with supporters setting off fireworks, waving Senegalese flags and blowing vuvuzelas.

“That is actually an uncommon election,” mentioned Al Jazeera’s Nicolas Haque, reporting from exterior Sonko’s house. “Persons are celebrating exterior the house of a politician who shouldn’t be even within the working – Ousmane Sonko. For the individuals right here, the truth that this election even passed off is a purpose to have fun. There was a lot pent-up emotion being launched. On these streets simply weeks in the past, there have been riots, demonstrators protesting for this election to happen.”

He added: “Nobody has claimed victory. The counting continues to be underneath method, however there are some notable candidates who’ve all congratulated Faye.”

They included one of many principal contenders, Anta Babacar Ngom, who wished Faye success as chief of Senegal in a press release.

“Congratulations to Bassirou Diomaye Faye on his unquestionable victory,” she mentioned on X.

It was not clear how most of the 15,633 polling stations have been counted to date.

Last provisional outcomes are anticipated by Tuesday. A second spherical of voting will solely happen if no candidate secures the greater than 50 p.c majority required to forestall a run-off.

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