Mauritania: Ghazouani officially wins presidency

# 01:14
2 July 2019

Mauritania’s ruling party’s candidate is the winner of last month’s presidential elections, the nation’s Constitutional Council announced on Monday.

Former Defense Minister Mohamed Ould Ghazouani won 52% of the June 22 vote in the West African country, the council announced in a press conference.

Ould Ghazouani is an ally of incumbent President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, who came to power after a 2008 coup.

Opposition candidates last week rejected initial election results indicating Ghazouani was the winner.

“We do not recognize the results announced by the electoral commission," Mohammed Ould Mouloud, who won only 2.44% of the votes, told reporters in Nouakchott last Monday, claiming “blatant fraud."

The press conference also included opposition candidates Kane Hamidou Baba, Mohamed Ould Boubaker and Biram Ould Dah Ould Abeid.

Following the announcement of the initial poll results, protests broke out in the capital, Nouakchott, and authorities shut down the Internet.

Calm, however, has gradually returned to Nouakchott. Internet service has partially resumed.

Despite opposition claims of widespread fraud, including more votes in rural areas than registered voters, the official electoral commission called the elections transparent and legal.