President Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire has been re-elected for a third term with more than 94.27 per cent of votes, the country’s electoral commission said on Tuesday.
Ouattara’s key rivals, Konan Bedie and Pascal Affi N’Guessan received 1.66 per cent and 0.99 per cent of votes respectively, the commission said.
Both opposition politicians say Ouattara’s third-term bid is unconstitutional and had called on their supporters to boycott the Oct. 31 election.
The fourth candidate, Konan Kouadio Bertin, who counted as an outsider, received 1.99 per cent of the vote.
The commission placed voter turnout at 53.9 per cent, with the results still having to be confirmed by the Constitutional Council.
The West African cocoa producer’s election has been feared to cause unrest and threaten political stability, with more than 20 people killed in violence in the run-up to the poll, according to Human Rights Watch.
Ouattara, who has been in power since 2011, initially promised he would step down after his second term.
The 78-year-old, however, announced his candidacy in August, a month after the sudden death of his anointed successor, former Prime Minister Amadou Coulibaly.
Cote d’Ivoire’s constitution allows for only two five-year presidential terms, but Ouattara’s Rally of the Republicans party argues a 2016 constitutional amendment has reset the clock.