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Comoros

Yearbook 2002

Comoros. According to Countryaah website, President Azali Assoumani, who has governed the Comoros since the 1999 coup, resigned at the beginning of the year to take part in the federal presidential election in April. Power was temporarily taken over by a transitional government in which the opposition also participated. However, opposition politicians left the government after a short time.

2002 Comoros

Before the presidential election, each island would have adopted its own statutes that would be approved in referendums. The same happened in Anjouan and Mohéli as early as 2001. At Grand Comore, the vote was not held until March, but the constitutional proposal was then rejected by voters. However, the new constitution was approved by voters in April.

Regional presidential elections were held on March 31 at Anjouan and Mohéli. In Anjouan, military leader Mohammed Bacar won by almost 70% of the vote. At Mohéli there was a dead race between two candidates. A new round of elections was held in early April and won by Mohammed Said Fazul.

In the April 14 federal presidential election, three candidates, in addition to Azali Assoumani, also placed Mahmoud Mradabe, a wealthy businessman, and Said Ali Kemal, descendants of the princes of Grand Comore.

The latter two claimed that irregularities had occurred during the election movement and called for a boycott. Several violent incidents were reported during Election Day. Voter turnout was low on all islands. According to preliminary results, Azali Assoumani won with 75% of the vote. International observers said the election had been carried out correctly, but refrained from calling it free and honest. However, the election was annulled by the National Electoral Commission, which ordered a new vote. The election was later approved by a new electoral authority.

Azali Assoumani took office as president in late May. Shortly before, opposition politician Abdou Soule Elbak had won the Grand Comore regional presidential election. This was seen as a setback for Assoumani.

A power struggle between the two created new tensions on the main island, and in June the military surrounded several government buildings. According to several analysts, the conflict was mainly about who would have control over the economy.

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