Sit Tight Syndrome: Biya ‘easily’ wins seventh term as president, at 85
Paul Biya,7th term President of Cameroon
Why some African Presidents have remained sit is a question yet to be unravelled as Cameroon’s President Paul Biya, who is termed sub-Saharan Africa’s oldest leader, has easily won a seventh term to remain as Cameroon’s President according to the Constitutional Council after garnering 71.3 percent of the October 7 vote.
Announcing the official results in a state television broadcast, the council president, Clement Atangana said, Biya’s winning was far ahead of opposition candidate Maurice Kamto’s 14.2 percent.
The council, which was appointed by Biya, rejected all 18 legal challenges to the election and defended the process.
“The election was free, fair and credible in spite of the security challenges in the English-speaking regions,” Atangana said.
Major cities saw heavy troop deployment on Monday as the government banned all opposition rallies.
Witnesses told AFP news agency that they heard gunfire in Buea, the capital of the English-speaking Southwest region, on Monday.
On Sunday, an opposition march in Douala to protest electoral “fraud” was banned and around 30 people were arrested, AFP also reported.
Political tension has been high in the two weeks since the vote, as Kamto claimed victory based on his own campaign’s figures, leading the ruling party to brand him an outlaw.
The widely-expected victory extends Biya’s 36-year rule and could see him remain in power until at least the age of 92.
The October 7 election had very low turnout in English-speaking regions after more than 200,000 fled fighting between Anglophone separatists and security forces.