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Vote counting underway in Jonglei State.

By Philip Thon Aleu April 15, 2010 (BOR) -- Polling stations closed peacefully on Thursday as elections staffs began vote counting today Friday, while the national electoral board announced cancellation of election in one constituency in Jonglei.

Counting Staffs sorting ballots in Kolnyang Primary School on April 16, 2010 (ST)

In the centers visited by Sudan Tribune, turnout ranges between 52% to a surprising 99.7% in constituencies where the election race is tight. The head of Jonglei State Election High Committee, Mecak Ajang Alaak lauded the peaceful and smooth completion of polling operation. He urged the citizens to remain calm and respect the final results which "will be exactly as counted at polling stations." Few voters trickled to polling stations on Thursday. In some centers, polling staff spent the whole day dozing for expected voters never turn-up. At 8:00am local time on Friday, sorting and counting of votes commenced. In Kolnyang Primary School polling center, vote counting for the executives and national assembly was tallied by midday. The officials expect the counting in that center to be completed by 6:00pm local time on Friday. In neighboring Makuach Payam centers, security forces deny press entry to counting rooms citing orders from "above". However the head of polling staffs said counting would be completed lately Friday or early Saturday and that all party agents and representatives of independent candidates have unlimited access to counting process. After vote tally and tabulation in each polling station, the result will be published there and copied to the Chief Election Officer (CEO) to be forwarded to the State Election High Committee. The data will be entered into computers by staffs hired locally and send to NEC head office in Khartoum. But the announcement of preliminary results is expected at States' level before final declaration of the elections winners in Khartoum next Tuesday. Speaking to the Sudan Tribune, the State High Election chair Mecak Ajang Alaak said he is moved by the successful conduct of elections in Jonglei. Analysis before the start of the election had claimed there was a potential ground for fighting during polls in Jonglei. Mr. Ajang said this calm during the voting period can be explained by the timely arrival of election materials and the speedy distribution to polling stations. He also praised the cooperative esprit among the elections teams. Asked to assure Jonglei citizens of transparency, fairness and neutrality during the tallying of votes, he responded that "we will never alter any figure. Results will be exactly as counted at polling stations." ONE CONSTITUENCY CANCELLED IN BOR The National Election Commission in Khartoum decided to cancel election in Athoc North in Bor County, constituency number 27 for State Legislative Assembly. The move was prompted when Kuol Bol Ayom, an independent candidate, had his symbol of padlock changed to a bucket. Mr. Kuol Bol, who is contesting against SPLM nominee Daniel Deng Kut and another independent candidate Buol Lual, had complained to the NEC for printing of wrong symbol that would not be recognized by his voters. (ST)

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Publication:Sudan Tribune (Sudan)
Date:Apr 17, 2010
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