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International News

Sep 23, 2018
9:36PM

Maldives: Counting of votes for Presidential elections begins

AP
In Maldives, counting of votes has begun for the Presidential elections held today and provisional results are expected by Monday morning. 

Incumbent President Abdullah Yameen is seeking reelection for second term and is in straight contest with Joint opposition candidate Ibrahim   Mohamed Solih. 

A candidate must secure 50 percent of the vote to win. Earlier, high voter turnout was reported and polling hours were extended by three hours to allow maximum voters exercise their franchise. 

Local media had quoted several voters complaining that it took them hours during the voting process. 

Maldives election commission said that no incidence of irregularity has been reported so far. 

The elections are being held amid fears by opposition and foreign monitors of election commission involvement in rigging the polls in favor of President. 

Maldives government had imposed emergency in the country in February after Supreme Court ruled for fair trial of convicted opposition leaders including former President Nasheed, who is in exile now.

AIR Correspondent reports, the voting percentage is expected to be quite high and extra hours were provided to compensate for delay caused by use of tablets for voter verification. 

Some of the voters complained that they had to stand for hours to exercise their franchise. 

Opposition asserted that their exit polls show their candidate getting 63 percent of votes polled. 

However, they added that President Yameen will declare himself victorious only through rigging of votes. 

The election process may get over in coming days but politics over its will continue for weeks to come. 

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