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Rajoelina, Ravalomanana Lead Madagascar Presidential Race

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Rajoelina, Ravalomanana Lead Madagascar Presidential Race

Madagascar’s former presidents Andry Rajoelina and Marc Ravalomanana were neck-and-neck in the country’s presidential race according to partial results published by the electoral commission on Thursday.

Rajoelina won 43.5% of votes cast in Wednesday’s vote, while Ravalomanana secured 42.44%, according to results from 147 polling stations out of 24 852 nationwide.

The country’s most recent president Hery Rajaonarimampianina trailed with 2.93% of the votes counted so far.

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The Ceni electoral commission estimated turnout at 47.18%.

Following the vote, Rajoelina and Ravalomanana both told their supporters they were confident of victory.

Rajaonarimampianina has yet to comment.

Bitter rivals

A candidate must reach 50% to win outright, otherwise a second round will be held on December 19.

Thirty-six candidates ran in the election, which is considered an acid test of the democratic credentials of the large Indian Ocean island nation which has a history of coups and instability.

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The key battle was expected to be between Rajaonarimampianina, 60, Ravalomanana, 68, and Rajoelina, 44, according to analysts and the findings of a banned pre-vote poll seen by AFP.

Ravalomanana and Rajoelina are bitter rivals and it is the first time they have faced each other at the polls.

Ravalomanana ruled from 2002 to 2009 until he was ousted in a military-backed coup, followed by Rajoelina who was in power until 2014, and then Rajaonarimampianina until earlier this year.

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Both Ravalomanana and Rajoelina were banned from contesting the last elections in 2013 under international pressure to avoid a repeat of political violence that engulfed the island in 2009.

Campaigning for Wednesday’s polls passed off without incident and voting was peaceful, according to officials.

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African News

Prime Minister And Cabinet Members Resign In Burkina Faso

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Prime Minister And Cabinet Members Resign In Burkina Faso

The cabinet of Burkina Faso President, Roch Marc Kabore, has resigned according to a statement released on national television by the country’s president.

Prime Minister Paul Kaba Thieba, a former economist, had held the position since January 2016 when he was nominated by President Roch Marc Christian Kabore. Kabore accepted the resignations and said, a new government is to be form as soon as possible while no explanation was given for there resignation.

The government  is faced growing pressure over a rise in the number of kidnappings and attacks. The country lies in the heart of the vast Sahel region, which is struggling with a bloody Islamist insurgency.

Canadian Edith Blais, 34, and her Italian partner Luca Tacchetto, 30, have been missing since mid-December, and late Wednesday a Canadian geologist kidnapped by suspected jihadists was found dead at a remote gold mine in the northeast.

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Breaking: Court Grants Dino Melaye Bail On Health Ground

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Dino Melaye Granted Bail On Health Condition

Senator Dino Melaye has been granted bail by a High Court in Maitama, Abuja. Justice Yusuf Halilu granted bail to Melaye on health ground. Halilu was of the view that the Senator must be healthy to stand trial.

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The ruling was granted after an application by Melaye’s lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN). The senator is currently being held in a police health facility in Abuja.

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As terms for his bail, the defendant is expected to produce three sureties, one of whom must be the Clerk of the National Assembly.

The judge said the other two sureties must be owners of properties within the Abuja metropolis.

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Ghana: Undercover Reporter Cries Out Over Death Threats

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Ghana: Undercover Reporter Cries Out Over Death Threats

Ghanaian undercover reporter Anas Aremeyaw Anas has said, his team face death threats on a daily basis. He was speaking after his colleague Ahmed Hussein-Suale was shot dead while driving home, after a politician called for retribution against him.

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Reports say Ahmed Hussein-Suale was near his home in Madina Suburb on Wednesday when two men on a motorbike pulled up next to his car and shot him at close range.

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The journalist died instantly after being shot twice in the chest and in the neck.

He was an investigative journalist with tiger eye private investigations, run by Anas. Hussein had exposed Ghana’s soccer corruption that led to the head of the Ghana Football Association resignation.

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