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Cablegate: Senegal: Presidential Election Sitrep 5: Provisional

VZCZCXRO2805
OO RUEHMA RUEHPA
DE RUEHDK #0479 0610800
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 020800Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY DAKAR
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7700
INFO RUEHZK/ECOWAS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS DAKAR 000479

SIPDIS

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

STATE FOR AF/W, AF/RSA, DRL/AE AND INR/AA
PARIS FOR POL - D'ELIA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM PGOV PINS KDEM SG
SUBJECT: SENEGAL: PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION SITREP 5: PROVISIONAL
RESULTS

REF: DAKAR 0450 AND PREVIOUS

SUMMARY
-------
1. (SBU) With the announcement of provisional election results,
Senegal's voters gave incumbent President Abdoulaye Wade a
comfortable victory. He won in 32 two of Senegal's 34 departments,
gaining a national majority of 55.72 per cent with a vote tally of
1,873,907. With 70 percent turnout, the results underscore the
strength of Senegal's long democratic tradition -- plus the power of
incumbency, patronage and money. END SUMMARY.

LANDSLIDE VICTORY
-----------------
2. (U) Provisional results published by departmental committees
show that President Wade won all but two of Senegal's 34
departments. The Department of Thies was taken by former Prime
Minister Idrissa Seck and that of Nioro was won by former Prime
Minister Moustapha Niasse.

FIGURES SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES
----------------------------
3. (U) Out of a total of 3,414,771 votes cast, Senegalese
Democratic Party (PDS) leader Wade won 1,873,907 (55.79 per cent);
Idriss Seck received 503,493 (14.99 per cent); Socialist Party
leader Ousmane Tanor Dieng was third with 459,513 votes (13.68 per
cent); and Moustapha Niasse came in fourth with 198,523 votes (5.91
per cent). Four middleweight candidates received a combined
percentage of 7.25 percent of the vote with Socialist Mayor of
Ziguinchor Robert Sagna taking 2.61 percent, followed by Abdoulaye
Bathily with 2.2 percent, Landing Savane with 1.9 percent, and Talla
Sylla with 0.54 percent.

4. (SBU) Even in the troubled Casamance region the electorate voted
to re-elect Wade despite his facing off against the charismatic
Sagna. In a surprise result, Sagna only received 25 per cent of the
vote in his hometown, while Wade won 58.7 per cent. Turnout in the
Casamance was affected by rebel attacks on February 24 that left one
soldier dead and 13 wounded and some polling places without election
materials.

FINAL RESULTS COULD TAKE ANOTHER WEEK
-------------------------------------
5. (U) The departmental results will now be scrutinized by the
National Vote Count Commission, which has until March 2 to provide
final results to the Constitutional Court. If one or more
candidates contest the results, the Court has until March 10 to
review them and render a definitive result.

COMMENT
-------
6. (SBU) Although the Socialists and Bathily are claiming massive
fraud to provide some explanation for their resounding defeat, the
U.S., other international and national observers view the election
as free and fair albeit disorganized. Organizational problems
favored no particular candidate, and the 70 percent turnout was
impressive both for its size and for the patience that it required.
If anything, the results again underscore the strength of Senegal's
long democratic tradition -- plus the power of incumbency, patronage
and money. END COMMENT.

7. (U) Visit Embassy Dakar's classified website at
http://www.state.sgov/gov/p/af/dakar/.

JACOBS

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