Winner asks for the verification of "over 2000" void and blank votes

The president of São Tomé and leader of ADI, Patrice Trovoada

The Independent Democratic Action (ADI), winner of São Tomé and Príncipe's legislatures, asked the Constitutional Court to "verify" the "more than 2000" blank and void votes, which could guarantee the party an absolute majority, a spokesman announced.

"We are aware that there are, at a national level, more than 2000 votes considered null and void and almost all of them are useful votes in favor of the ADI, " party spokesman and congressman Abenildo Oliveira said today at a press conference.

ADI, led by the departing Prime Minister Patrice Trovoada, believes that there was "electoral fraud prepared by the opposition parties, when it comes to counting at the polling station," he added.

According to provisional results, ADI won the legislative elections, reaching 25 seats in the National Assembly (55 deputies), with 32,805 votes. The Movement for the Liberation of São Tomé and Príncipe/Social Democratic Party (MLSTP-PSD) had 31,634 votes (23 members), while the PCD-MDFM-UDD coalition received 7,451 votes, winning five terms. The Movement of Independent Citizens of São Tomé and Príncipe, however, managed to elect two deputies, with 1,659 votes.

According to CEN data, there were 2,351 void votes and 885 blank votes, in addition to 125 complaints.

With this result, ADI won with a relative majority and is seeking an understanding with the independent deputies, which would guarantee 27 parliamentary mandates, one less than those held by the MLSTP and the coalition, who claimed victory by absolute majority in these elections.