CAR Legislative Polls Annulled, Presidential Runoff Vote Set

The top Central African Republic court has annulled last month’s legislative elections, but confirmed that two former prime ministers will face off for the presidency.

The C.A.R.’s Constitutional Court ruled late Monday the first-round legislative vote on December 30 was marred by numerous irregularities, and said some candidates appeared to be involved in them.

Court president Zacharie Ndoumba said election officials had received more than 400 complaints about the polls.

The court did give the green light for a presidential runoff election between the top first-round vote-getters, Anicet Georges Dologuele and Faustin Archange Touadera.

In results announced earlier this month, Dologuele won 24 percent of the vote, followed by Touadera with 19 percent. The runoff vote was originally scheduled for January 31 – this Sunday – but is almost certain to be postponed.

Dologuele, 58, is an economist who served as prime minister from 1999 to 2001 under the government of President Ange-Felix Patasse.

Toudera, also 58, is a mathematician who was prime minister under President Francois Bozize from 2008 to 2013.

It was Bozize’s ouster by the Seleka rebel group in 2013 that triggered the C.A.R.’s political crisis. Since then, sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians has displaced nearly 1 million people.

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