July 27, 2010 / 1:30 PM / in 8 years

Burundi ruling party wins parliamentary election

Burundi's President Pierre Nkurunziza holds a news conference in Brussels October 23, 2009. Nkurunziza is on a three-day visit to Belgium. REUTERS/Yves Herman

BUJUMBURA (Reuters) - Burundi’s ruling party CNDD-FDD secured a big majority in the coffee producer’s parliamentary election, winning 81.19 percent of the vote, official results showed on Tuesday.

Last Friday’s vote was the third in a series of elections held by the landlocked nation since May, sullied by a July 23 presidential poll, which was boycotted by most opposition parties including the Forces for National Liberation (FNL) of former rebel leader Agathon Rwasa.

The national independent electoral commission (CENI) said the Tutsi-dominated Uprona party came second with 11.06 percent, and Sahwanya-Frodebu Nyakuri, a faction of Frodebu party of former Hutu President Domitien Ndayizeye, obtained 5.88 percent of the ballot.

Out of a minimum of 100 seats in the next national assembly, CNDD-FDD obtained 81 seats, Uprona got 17 seats and Sahwanya-Frodebu Nyakuri received 5 seats, CENI chairman Pierre Claver Ndayicariye told reporters.

“We added one extra seat to all the three parties in order to respect the numbers of 60 seats for Hutus, 40 for Tutsis... as recommended in the constitution,” said Ndayicariye.

The law says at least third of the parliamentary seats must be taken up by women. Three more seats will go to the Twa ethnic group.

CENI said turnout in last week’s parliamentary election was 66 percent, lower than the 76.9 percent of voters who participated in the presidential poll last month.

Analysts fear the domination of the lower house will endanger democratic debate in a country ranked by graft watchdog Transparency International as the most corrupt in east Africa.

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