30 May 2020

Mali holds general elections despite COVID-19 fears

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Voters in Mali went to the polls Sunday to elect parliamentary representatives despite concerns about security and coronavirus pandemic. reports citing foreign media.

Mali has reported 18 cases of COVID-19 so far and the first death from the virus was reported Saturday.

Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita in a televised address on Wednesday night said the elections would be conducted with due respect to preventive measures against the coronavirus spread.

Government this week announced several measures to contain the virus, including night curfew since Thursday.

Civil society organizations had demanded for a postponement of the election.

But President Keita noted the elections were crucial for Mali’s peace efforts.

A national dialogue last December recommended immediate renewal of the mandate of the lawmakers.

The mandate of the outgoing parliament expired in 2018.

Campaigning ended on Friday evening.

Polling stations opened 8am GMT with a few people ready to vote, and will close at 6pm GMT, according to local media.

2020.03.29 / 20:56
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