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Guinea's top court confirms election results

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Guinea's Supreme Court on Friday confirmed the results of September elections that handed power to President Alpha Conde's party, rejecting an challenge by his rivals.

The court upheld provisional results published on October 18 giving Conde's Rally of the Guinean People (RPG) party 53 seats in the national assembly.

The results gave the RPG together with its allies an absolute majority in the 114-member parliament, but were challenged by the opposition parties, which won a total of 53 seats in the September 28 polls.

The opposition coalition alleged "massive fraud", claiming the polls were marred irregularities including ballot stuffing, voter intimidation and minors casting votes.

International observers also said serious flaws had affected the credibility of the polls, but on Friday the Supreme Court confirmed the provisional results.

"We are disappointed because we worked day and night to present to the Supreme Court all the anomalies that could have restored our rights," said Thierno Souleymane Balde, lawyer for the main opposition party, UFDG.

Opposition leaders were due to meet Saturday to decide how to proceed after the court's decision.

The RPG's lawyer, Mory Doumbouya, said the ruling party would try to "convince the opposition to hold their political debates in parliament, and not on the street".

None of the leaders of the major parties was present for the declaration of final results, which were announced by individual constituency and took more than two hours.

In 2010 Conde became the first democratically elected president of the west African country, which has a long history of political and military turmoil and bloody crackdowns on protesters.

Legislative elections should have taken place within six months of his inauguration in December 2010.

However, they were pushed back, with opposing factions unable to agree on conditions for the elections, leaving the role of parliament to be played by an unelected National Transitional Council.

The last parliamentary elections in Guinea took place in June 2002 during the dictatorship of General Lansana Conte, who died in December 2008 after 24 years in power.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/131115/guineas-top-court-confirms-election-results-0