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Ivory Coast votes in first post-war presidential poll

Oct 29, 2015 Ivorians recently headed to the polls to vote in the country’s presidential election, in which incumbent president, Alassane Ouattara has been heavily favored to win.

Ouattara, whose leadership has helped the West African nation re-emerge as a rising economic star on the continent, faced a divided opposition.  According to experts, a peaceful election is crucial in reassuring investors who have flooded into the country over the past three years.

Vote counting begun as soon poll closed. However the election commission was forced to extend voting after logistical problems delayed voting in several polling centers.

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Prior to the elections, several Ivorians shared their expectation on the outcome of the elections.

Herve Lole, an Abidjan Resident said:

“There are no stakes. There are expectations in this election. We will participate in this election, all the dices have been played, and that’s a problem, but that’s life.”

Another resident, Abigael Podiogo said:

“I want the election to take place in a calm atmosphere so that we can go back to normal, to a calm life. No fighting, no crisis like in 2011, just peace after the elections. Each person will vote for the president that they want and life can go on.”

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Jean Marie Amessan said:

“I want our leaders to put in action what they promised the people, especially when it comes to youth employment. They need to make sure that young people can get work because we cannot go to the next elections if young people are still unemployed,”

With memories of the 2011 post-election violence that killed over 3000 people still fresh, Jean Claude Coulibaly, a political analyst said:

“Everything we experienced in 2011 is still fresh in our hearts. I don’t think that Ivorians want to relive those moments. It’s true that there is bitterness and resentment, and there are still many problems to solve and scars, but I think at the right moment, good sense will prevail and all these things that people say may happen will not happen,”

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