Nearly 5.5 million voters were asked to vote on Sunday. At the beginning of the week, protests and strong tensions shook the central and northern parts of the country.
A torrential rain hit Cotonou, the economic capital of Benin. It was about 30 minutes before Patrice Talon voted in the Zogo district at about 9:30 a.m., facing two close parties with him. The unknown candidates of the United States-the elderly MPs Alassane Soumanou and Corentin Kohoué are the only people allowed to run-the outgoing president will guarantee a second term. On Sunday, April 11, even the sky looked beautiful (in Benin, rain is considered a good sign).
In a special operation, Patrice Eagleclaw, in the final days of the 2016 election, said that he expected a victory in the first round. “The Beninese will choose the plan that best meets their expectations, He said, leaving the polling station. Benin is characterized by its long-term expertise in electoral matters. “ In recent days, violence has disrupted democratic traditions.
Earlier this week, demonstrations and tensions shook the central and northern parts of the country, condemning the outgoing president for confiscation of votes. On Thursday, the army removed the roadblocks and fired live ammunition, clearing the road. At least two civilians were killed in Sawi and Bante provinces, and five others were injured.
On Friday, the European Union, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United States passed their Benin embassy “Call for an end to this violence and restore calm to the situation” And said “Their solidarity with the victims”. The next day, in Tchaourou, the aboriginal village of former President Thomas Boni Yayi (Thomas Boni Yayi), he again became hostile to Patrice Talon.According to sources, the streets of the town of Savè “Almost empty” At the beginning of the day. Of the four polling stations visited by AFP reporters, none of them opened at 9 am, and no electoral materials were deployed when security forces and military patrols.
“These incidents are regrettable, The president said that his thumb was blackened by an indelible vote. But despite intimidation and poisoning, citizens can still vote [la veille du scrutin, du matériel électoral n’avait pu être acheminé dans le nord du pays]. The manipulated children were controlled by the expertise of our police…Two police officers were also injured. Building a country is difficult. It is also consistent, especially when reforms are being carried out. Today’s vote is crucial. “
Patrice Talon, 62, is a former businessman who first made a fortune in agriculture and then in cotton. The “big president” country recorded a welcome growth of nearly 7% in 2019, which fell to 2% after the closure of the land border with Nigeria’s neighbors and the closure of the Covid-19 crisis. But the forecast for 2021 is still encouraging, and it is expected to rebound by 5%. The outgoing president defended his record with his good economic performance and the construction of several road infrastructures.
Participation rate is the biggest unknown in this vote. Its legitimacy depends on it. In this case, the opposition demanded a boycott. “The President did his best to stand alone in front of him, Regretful to Frédéric Joël Aïvo, he was prevented from participating in the competition. I don’t vote because I’m not used to going to churches that don’t get the gospel from the Bible. I invite all Beninese to do the same. ”
At the end of the morning, in Cotonou, very few voters out of the country’s 5.5 million people voted. “I vote for Talon and support the development of my country, Make sure Reckyath Adeoti. He didn’t change my daily life, but he put asphalt on a road near my house. He has a good track record. “ Armel Elisha also paid tribute to the infrastructure he saw emerging from the ground. “Like a stadium, a road”, But the most important thing is “Involve young people in its projects”.
Although the country is questioned by all human rights NGOs and many opponents have been arrested, the young man realizes “Democratic Retreat” In his country. “But you can’t make egg rolls without breaking the eggs. He blurted out. For now, the important thing is development. I am very proud of the progress that Patrice Talon has made Benin from a “poor country” to a “middle country”. There was indeed more democracy in the past, but there was no obvious willingness to move forward. “
At the Marina PK 10 polling station, there was no crowd around 10:30 in the morning. The electoral list of twenty names is signed by only two or three voters. “Not many people, Note that observers from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) came to watch the ballots. At the same time, there will be a large number of municipal elections by 2020. However, at around 11 am after the mass rally, they should start pouring in. “ All parts of the region will close voting at 4 pm, and the results should be announced early this week.