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Thursday, 06 May 2021

Benin's President Talon wins re-election in first round with 86.36%

Turnout in Sunday's election was at around 50.17%, electoral commission data showed

Reuters , Tuesday 13 Apr 2021
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President Patrice Talon has won re-election in Benin, with 86% of the votes in the first round of a ballot boycotted by some opposition parties, provisional results showed on Tuesday.

Turnout in Sunday's election was at around 50.17%, electoral commission data showed.

The election was marked by violence sparked by objections to Talon's decision to run for a second five-year mandate, and accusations by his opponents that he has undermined Benin's standing as one of Africa's stable democracies.

Violent protests spread in several cities in the nation of around 12 million before the vote, while a coalition of opposition parties called their supporters to stay at home

Among their complaints are Talon's U-turn on a pledge he made as a candidate in 2016 to serve only one term, and changes he pushed through to election laws, which resulted in total control of parliament by his supporters and effectively excluded leading opponents from the presidential race.

The 62-year-old multi-millionaire cotton magnate touted Benin's strong economic growth under his leadership as one of the main reasons for him to seek another term.

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