largeBenin voted through the election on Sunday, electing its president after an unenthusiastic campaign. The movement is marked by violence in the central part of the country, where demonstrators protested the votes confiscated by the outgoing head of state Patric Talon.
This former businessman who came to power in 2016 and whose re-election campaign committed the dictatorship of the West African country will leave a little doubt: his opponent is almost unknown by two candidates, the former representing Alassane Soumanou and Corentin Kohoué.
The results are expected to be announced on Monday or Tuesday.
Most of the opponents either went into exile, were condemned by the courts, or were prevented from participating due to the new Electoral Law and institutional reforms.
For a long time, Benin has been praised for its democratic vitality. It has experienced a bland or enthusiastic movement in the south, while serious violence has occurred in the north.
The election platform of Benin’s civil society organization observed: “The special thing about this election is that the election was conducted in an atmosphere of tension and violence.”
Since Tuesday, residents of several towns in the central and northern parts of the country (opposition strongholds) have blocked hundreds of cars and transport vehicles by setting up roadblocks.
On Thursday, the army used live ammunition to dismantle roadblocks and clear the way. During this intervention, at least 2 civilians were killed and 5 others were injured.
“The soldier who shoots at our children is like we are making a movie. If the president has a problem with his opponent, he will pity the poor,” said Philomène M’Betti Tepa, a resident of the northwest town of Bucumbe.
On Friday, representatives of Benin from the European Union, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United States called for “stop violence” in a joint statement, hoping for “freedom, peace and transparency.”
According to the Autonomous National Electoral Commission (Cena), the roadblocks caused delays in the deployment of electoral materials in the north. But he said: “There is no reason not to hold this election.”
It is estimated that 15,531 polling stations will have close to 5 million voters. The counting of votes must begin when the polling station closes at 4:00 pm (3:00 pm GMT).
In this election, Beninians will elect a vice chairman for the first time.
Patrice Talon (Patrice Talon) is the only woman selected as a candidate for the position, she is a 57-year-old philosophy professor Mariam Talata (Mariam Talata), she has a feminist Charm.
In addition to the lack of a strong opposition, the president can have a good economic record and the number of his re-elections: cotton production, one of the country’s main resources, has increased substantially, small-scale corruption has almost been eliminated, and many roads have been built.