The Republic of Congo’s Interior Minister announced Tuesday longtime incumbent President Denis Sassou Nguesso has won another five year term.
Raymond Zephiri Mboulou said in a national address that Sassou Nguesso secured just more than 88 percent of the vote in Sunday’s election, extending his more than 36 years as leader of the Central African nation.
His main rival, Guy-Brice Parfait Kolelas, who died suddenly as people were going to the polls, was a distant second, receiving less than eight percent of the vote.
The remaining votes were split between five other candidates.
A spokesman for Kolelas’ campaign said the 61-year-old died of COVID-19 as he was being evacuated from Brazzaville to France for treatment.
Kolelas was challenging Sassou Nuguesso for a second time in Sunday’s election, finishing second to the country’s longtime leader in 2016.
Sassou Nuguesso first took office in 1979 and served until 1992. He has served uninterrupted since winning the presidency again in 1997.
Voice of America – English