Guinea’s opposition leader and presidential candidate Cellou Dalein Diallo has held his final rally ahead of Sunday’s election, denouncing President Alpha Conde’s decision to run for a third term in office, calling it unconstitutional.
This will be the third face-off between Conde and 68-year old Diallo, who first ran against each other in the country’s historic 2010 election that came after more than a half-century of dictatorship.
For months, tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets in Guinea, and dozens have died in demonstrations opposing another term for Conde. The current president insists he is following the will of the people by running in October 18 vote, after a public referendum approved it in March.
Diallo, of the Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea party, warned last month that Guinea has an unreliable voter registry, where more than three million people are not correctly registered and that the electoral commission has said it is unable to correct the shortcomings.
While the incumbent president previously defeated Diallo in both the 2010 and 2015 elections, many in Guinea say that Conde’s popularity has sharply fallen as a result of his decision to seek a third term.
Opponents now believe that Conde, 82, will use the new constitution to restart the clock on his term limits, potentially giving him another decade in power.