Central African Republic President Touadera re-elected

BANGUI, Central African Republic (AP) — Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadera won a second term in office, according to provisional results announced by the electoral commission on Monday.

Touadera was re-elected in the first round of the December 27 presidential vote with 53.9 per cent of the votes, the National Election Authority said. In second place was Anicet-Georges Dologuele with 21.1 per cent of the vote, and Martin Ziguele came in third with 7.4 per cent, according to the results announced.

The vote, and its aftermath, have been marked by violence and the formation of a rebel coalition, amid calls from the opposition to delay the vote. International observers noted the vote in the capital went well, but violence prevented many from going to vote in other parts of the country, despite the presence of peacekeeping soldiers and reinforcements sent in by Russia and Rwanda after a pre-election attack.

The results must now be officially validated by the Constitutional Court, which will field appeals.

The announcement of provisional results comes as armed violence mounts outside the capital, including an attack by rebels on Saturday on Touadera’s second home in Damara, a locality more than 75 kilometres from Bangui.

The attack was repulsed by the Central African Armed Forces with the support of Russians, Rwandans and Congolese soldiers who came to the Central African Republic as part of military cooperation with the nation.

Touadera blamed former president Francois Bozize for the electoral unrest.

“At the head of this association of criminals is former President François Bozize supported by his political allies,” he said. “The attacks were aimed at overthrowing the institutions of the Republic and putting an end to the democratic process and finally to establish a first transition.”

Abacar Sabone, who runs military operations for the rebel coalition known as the CPC, said the operation was a warning to the government that the rebel coalition is capable of attacking Bangui, if Touadera does not open up consultation and dialogue with the coalition.