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France's ruling party dismisses Sassou Nguesso's victory

Republic of the Congo

France’s ruling Socialist Party has dismissed the re-election of Congolese president Denis Sassou Nguesso.

Prior to the March 20 election, the Socialist Party called for a postponement of the poll saying the incumbent leader was stifling democracy and intimidating his opponents.

In a statement on its website, the party said President Nguesso’s victory was “not credible” and has asked the African Union and the European Union to take up the matter to prevent “a major crisis in the region”.

Francois Hollande’s party criticised the entire electoral process which it said lacked transparency and accused the Electoral Commission of bias.

Maurice Braud, the party’s National Secretary for Immigration and co-development who authored the statement highlighted the disruption in communication with the outside world for nearly 5 days and condemned the attack on three French journalists who had interviewed an opposition candidate.

The French government has not commented on the party’s statement. It has however deplored the “disturbing context” under which the Congolese election was held.

Denis Sassou Nguesso, one of Africa’s longest ruling presidents, has ruled the oil rich Congo for nearly 32 years.

He won the March 20 poll by 60 percent thus securing a third 5-year term in office.

His victory has however not been accepted by the opposition.

The country’s former adviser on peace and security, General Jean-Marie Michel Mokoko who also contested the polls has called for a popular uprising to protest President Nguesso’s victory.

5 other presidential candidates according to AFP have also called for a ghost town action starting this Tuesday to challenge the results.

The candidates in a joint statement urged the Congolese people to “fully exercise their sovereignty … through legally recognised actions (such as) strikes, rallies and peace marches,” AFP reported.

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