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  • Ex presidents and current candidates, Marc Ravalomanana (L) and Andry Rajoelina

    Ex presidents and current candidates, Marc Ravalomanana (L) and Andry Rajoelina | Photo: Reuters

Published 27 December 2018

Ex-president and current candidate Marc Ravalomanana trails opponent Andry Rajoelina, who is also a former head of state.

Madagascar’s electoral authority was charged to put off declaring the results of the recently concluded scandal-plagued presidential election, citing complaint from one candidate.

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An investigation has been launched into corruption allegations but an official announcement will be made on the cusp of the new year, on the originally planned date - December 31, according to an Independent National Election Commission (INEC) statement Wednesday.

“Candidates’ representatives asked for the comparison of the minutes, the verification of the used and non-used ballot. In the name of transparency, the INEC accepts,” Thierry Rakotonarivo, deputy chairman of the electoral commission stated in a news conference Monday.

“Also, to show the will of the INEC, we can also publish the counting sheets, the ballots that have been used and that have been not used if it is needed, even it is not our competence.”

Following the planned year-end announcement, Madagascar’s High Constitutional Court (HCC) will have eight days to accept or reject the provisional results and make a decision prior to January 4.

Ex-president and current candidate Marc Ravalomanana rejected the outcome of the polls which placed him behind another former head of state Andry Rajoelina’s 55% (or 2,567,142) of the votes with 44 percent (2,052,823 votes).

The electoral authority of the African nation reported the numbers after 99 percent of the polling station were tallied.

“It is true that I said that I will respect the results if the rules are respected. Unfortunately, it is not the case,” Ravalomanana said, calling on his supporters “whose rights have been violated, to stand up and defend their choices.”

Amid Ravalomanana ’s allegations of "massive fraud" and insistence that the INEC and the HCC to recount the ballots, Rajoelina has planned a swearing-in ceremony to be held on January 7, 2019. 

“Fraud and violence have prevailed and this has an impact on the results. The results of this election are not credible and the election is not transparent,” Ravalomanana added in a statement Sunday. “I have noticed massive fraud. There are electoral cards that are fake,” Ravalomanana told AFP Thursday.

European Union Observer Mission declared the polling process as being successful.

“The Malagasy people voted in a peaceful atmosphere in a transparent and well-organized election,” Cristian Preda, head of the mission, said.

Ravalomanana had garnered 35 percent behind Andry Rajoelina, who got 39 percent, in the first round of the election. Incumbent Hery Rajaonarimampianina only managed 8 percent.

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