Cote d’Ivoire elections: Ouattara wins controversial 3rd term

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Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara has provisionally won a third term in office with 94.27 percent of the vote in an election that sparked deadly violence and was boycotted by opposition voters.

Kuibiert-Coulibaly Ibrahime, head of the electoral commission, announced the results on Tuesday. He said the final turnout for 31 October’s election was at 53.90 percent.

Ouattara, 78, received over 90 percent in most districts in Saturday's vote, as much as 99 percent in some of his strongholds.

The results have to be validated by the country's constitutional council which will declare the final winner after hearing any challenges or complaints of irregularities.

The main opposition candidates Pascal Affi N’Guessan and Henri Konan Bédié encouraged their supporters to boycott the vote.

They each got 1 percent and 2 percent respectively while a fourth candidate, Kouadio Konan Bertin, running as an independent, also got 2 percent.

The opposition said Ouattara’s bid for a third term was illegal as it broke rules on Cote d'Ivoire's term limits.

"Maintaining Ouattara as head of state is likely to lead to civil war," N'guessan said.

But supporters of the president disagree and say the approval of a new constitution in 2016 means his first term did not count, allowing him to restart his mandate.

On Monday, the opposition said it was creating a transitional government to organise a new election.

Disagreement over Ouattara’s right to run for re-election led to clashes in the lead up to the vote, in which at least 30 people died. At least nine people were killed during Saturday’s vote according to reports by AFP.