Guineans will head to the polls on Sunday, October 18, to elect the country’s next president, in a tense election that comes after months of deadly unrest.
The Guinean political scene was shaken up in late August when the current president Alpha Condé said he would officially run for a third term.
Between October 2019 and July 2020, at least 50 people were killed in protests, mostly by security forces, and more than 200 were injured. Other rioters were arbitrarily detained, according to a report by Amnesty International.
The Guinean election will be handed out by the electoral commission CENI. Almost five million voters are eligible to cast ballots in the presidential contest. 12 candidates will be running for president, amongst which current head of state Alpha Condé.
Condé and Diallo, old rivals face-off
If Condé fails to clinch outright victory with more than 50% of the vote, the president will probably have to face off against his leading opponent, Cellou Dalein Diallo, in a run-off .
Condé, 82, is seeking a controversial third term after pushing through a revamped constitution earlier this year that critics denounced as a plot to sidestep a two-term limit on presidential mandates.
The new constitution was overwhelmingly supported by voters in a March 22 referendum that was boycotted by Condé’s political rivals and civil society organisations. The result means Condé could potentially now remain the country’s president for 12 more years.
Diallo, 68, was at the forefront of mass demonstrations against the proposed changes, which were met with a harsh crackdown by security forces.