Ivory Coast President Moves Closer to Clinching Third Term  

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara is moving closer to securing a controversial third term in office, with more than half the ballots tallied showing him with a majority of votes, even as two opposition candidates attempted to discredit the preliminary results. The top opposition candidates, former President Henri Konan Bedie and ex-Prime Minister Pascal Affi N’Guessan, say they will not recognize a Ouattara victory, claiming it was slanted because they called for a boycott of the October 31 election. They also said Quattara’s run for a third term is illegal because it violates the constitution, which allows presidents to serve two terms. Ouattara rejected that notion, saying the approval of a new constitution in 2016 allowed him to seek a third term.  The opposition announced late Monday, the formation of a transition council that helps create an alternative government, which will outline a blueprint for a fair presidential election.  The Ivory Coast government did not issue an immediate response to the opposition’s plans. 

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