Opposition candidate Mwini Baraka Said Souilihi told reporters on Sunday: “As happened in 2019, we are witnessing fraud in the elections by Razali Ousmani in collusion with the army.”
Souilhi explained that “ballot boxes were stuffed” in several municipalities, adding that “the people of the Comoros did not have the opportunity to choose the president who would determine their fate.”
The opposition announced a number of violations since the opening of polling stations in the traditional strongholds of the opposition, with a small attendance of voters, delays in voting, lack of electoral supplies, and preventing residents from monitoring the proper conduct of voting. A monitoring delegation from the African Union “Polling stations generally opened late.”
The outgoing president's campaign denied any fraud, noting that “the opposition is expressing a spectrum of conspiracy.”
President Ghazali Assoumani attributed the weak turnout to the “bad weather conditions” the country was witnessing, as citizens did not participate in large numbers in the capital, Moroni, due to non-stop rain.
About 340,000 voters choose a president from among 6 candidates for this small country with a population of 870,000 people.
Also on Sunday, voters in this Muslim country, where 45% of its population lives below the poverty line, are supposed to choose the governors of the islands of Grande Comoros, Anjouan and Mohéli, which make up the archipelago.
The Independent National Electoral Commission said the provisional results should be announced this week.
Ghazali Othmani, who is seeking a third consecutive term, won the previous presidential elections that took place in 2019, with 60% of the votes in the first round, but the results were appealed.
Since his return to power in 2016, Gazali Ousmane, the current president of the African Union, has thrown a number of his opponents into prison and pushed others to leave the country.