SomaliPress.com

Niger Voting in Presidential Election

Published on Monday 31st January 2011

Voters in the West African nation of Niger are casting ballots Monday in a presidential election meant to replace military rule with a stable civilian government.The ballot features 10 candidates, including some who were close to ousted president Mamadou Tandja.Niger's military overthrew Mr. Tandja last February when he tried to change the constitution to extend his 10-year rule.  He is now in prison for alleged graft.The military leaders have promised to restore a civilian government.  Junta leader General Salou Djibo said Monday the elections offer a new beginning for the country.Niger is a major uranium exporter, but is facing huge problems including unemployment, a struggle to recover from a major drought and famine, and terrorism from al-Qaida's North African branch.This is the third time since 1993 that Niger is attempting to install a civilian government after a period of military rule.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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