Côte d'Ivoire delays presidential run-off vote

Côte d’Ivoire will hold the decisive second round of its long-delayed presidential election on November 28, a week later than previously announced, Prime Minister Guillaume Soro announced on Tuesday.

The run-off pits incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo against challenger Alassane Ouattara.

“For practical, technical and equipment reasons, the independent electoral commission asked for an extra week to prepare the election in the best possible conditions,” Soro told a news conference.

The vote is aimed at ending the years of political deadlock that have discouraged investment in the top cocoa grower since a 2002 to 2003 civil war divided it into a government-controlled south and rebel-held north.

Results of an October 31 first round put Gbagbo on 38% and Ouattara on 32% with a voter turnout of about 80%, one of the highest seen in a genuinely multi-party African election.—Reuters

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