The National Election Commission (NEC) on Wednesday announced the extension of the official three-day voting process with one day. Two presidential candidates announced their withdrawal. The police in Khartoum has been pressured to vote.
Because of the very poor voters’ turnout throughout the country, the NEC on Tuesday had already extended the voting time for Wednesday, the third and officially the last day of the presidential and parliamentary election, from 6pm to 7pm.
“The extension of the voting period will enable the ruling party to rig the election dramatically.”
A number of presidential candidates rejected the extension of the election period. Mahmoud Abdeljabar told Sudan Tribune that the extension “will enable the ruling party to rig the election dramatically and solicit people who do not have any proof of identity, and give them residency affidavits to cast their votes.”
Two presidential candidates, Ahmed Radi and Omar Awadelkareem, announced their withdrawal, in protest against “serious violations” of the electoral law.
At a press conference in Khartoum on Wednesday, Awadelkareem pointed to the abuses he had witnessed at several polling stations in the capital, “called irregularities by the NEC”. He had noted that the serial numbers were missing on the ballots, and that voters were allowed to identify themselves with residency affidavits, instead of their voter registration cards.
‘No vote, no salary’
A policeman in Khartoum reported to Radio Dabanga on Wednesday that senior police officers ordered their personnel to participate in the elections by voting for the ruling party. If they would not cast their vote, the payment of their salaries would be delayed or cancelled.
“We were instructed to present our electoral registration number to the police administrative unit, to ensure our participation in the election.”