Cameroon court rejects bid to quash presidential vote

Cameroon’s supreme court on Thursday rejected an opposition bid to annul this month’s presidential election, paving the way for the results to be published.

Incumbent Paul Biya is widely expected to return for a sixth term following the October 9 vote which the opposition argues should be nullified due to electoral fraud.

The supreme court, which sat into the small hours of Thursday, threw out the opposition’s objections and is now due to announce the election results on Friday.

The main opposition Social Democratic Front, whose candidate John Fru Ndi faces defeat, put up nine of the 18 objections, most of which were rejected while the rest were withdrawn by the plaintiffs.

“There is no justification, It is therefore rejected,” the court repeated as the various claims were brought forward.

During the hearing Fru Ndi asserted that “we need justice. Give us the chance to have democracy and justice.”

As he left he added: “I am going to protest. I can no longer accept all the mismanagement in this country.”

Cameroon’s opposition had warned even before the vote that Biya (78) who has been in power 29 years, had locked down the entire electoral process in his favour and described polling on October 9 as “chaotic” and riddled with irregularities.

The court also invited all candidates in the October 9 vote “to kindly attend a cocktail… on October 21 following the announcement of the results,” one candidate said.

France, which backed Biya’s rise to power three decades ago, said it had no reason to believe the ballot was egregiously flawed.—Sapa-AFP

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