CONAKRY, Oct 27 (Reuters) - Guinea’s presidential election run-off is to be postponed to Nov. 7 from Oct. 31, state television said on Wednesday.
“After wide consultation with the different parties in the transition, the date of Nov. 7, 2010 has been set for the second round of the presidential election,” the head of the election commission, Siaka Sangare, said on state television.
“It is a date that has been agreed upon, cannot be changed, and, dare I say it, I think will be the last one set for this election that the Guinean people are waiting for so much,” Sangare, a Malian general called in to run the election commission, said.
He said the poll had been delayed to allow political leaders to restore calm among supporters on both sides.
The landmark vote, meant to end nearly two years of military rule, has been repeatedly postponed since the first round in June amid outbursts of violence between rival political camps and a lack of adequate preparation.
Junta leader General Sekouba Konate had yet to ratify the Oct. 31 date and one candidate, ex-premier Cellou Dallein Diallo, said it was premature — raising worries that his supporters would vigorously contest the outcome if he lost.
Diallo took 43.69 percent in June’s first round, relying on support from his ethnic Peul, who make up about 40 percent of the country.
Veteran opposition leader Alpha Conde, one of the Malinke who make up about 35 percent of the country and have tended to enjoy political power since independence, took 18.25 percent of the first round. (Editing by Myra MacDonald)