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Low voter turn out in Mali's legislative polls

Mali

<p>Officials in Mali said Thursday that voter turnout for the country;‘s legislative elections was just 36 percent.</p> <p>Mali’s territorial administration minister, Boubacar Alpha Bah said many chose to stay away from the ballot box due to threats of violence and <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 pandemic.</p> <p>“A total of 797 out of 22,147 polling stations could not open, accounting for 2,800,508 voters or 3% of the electorate. Votes cast was 2,627,320, turnout 35.73%, total number of lists 547, total number of candidates 1,417 of whom 430 were women, giving a participation rate of 30% for women and 70% for men”, Alpha Bah said.</p> <p>On Sunday, Malians went to the polls to elect new lawmakers in an election that has been long delayed over security concerns.</p> <p>Releasing the provisional results Thursday, Alpha Bah said of the 7.6 million registered voters, 35.73 percent cast their votes.</p> <p>Polling day was marked by several violent incidents in the volatile north and centre, including the kidnap of officials.</p> <p>Last week’s election followed the kidnap of leading opposition figure Soumaila Cissé, a first in Mali for a politician of his stature.</p> <p>But analysts said the election to the 147-seat parliament was critical to implementing reforms that could lead the former French colony out of its cycle of violence. </p> <p>Provisional results indicate Cissé was elected in the first round, but also show a second round of voting will be needed in some districts where no candidate won a majority.</p> <p>Preliminary results show many candidates who support President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta will likely face a second round of voting on April 19, according to an <span class="caps">AFP</span> tally.</p> <p><strong><span class="caps">AFP</span></strong></p>

A total of 797 out of 22,147 polling stations could not open, accounting for 2,800,508 voters or 3% of the electorate.

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