Mr Bakiyev, 55, secured an overwhelming 89 percent of the popular vote, the central electoral commission said Monday, with over 70 percent of all ballots counted.

His widely-expected victory allows him to formally replace Askar Akayev, who was ousted as the ex-Soviet Central Asian country’s president earlier this year in a popular revolt.

Results published on the commission’s website, set up to provide constantly updated information on the vote’s preliminary results, gave Mr Bakiyev an overwhelming lead, having secured 88.82 percent of the votes counted thus far.

The closest of his five opponents, Bakir uulu Tursunbai, got just 3.73 percent of the vote, according to the polls.

Turnout among the country’s 2.6 million eligible voters was 74.6 percent, well above the minimum required 50 percent, the electoral commission said.

Mr Bakiyev, who swept to office in March when crowds protesting controversial parliamentary elections overran the seat of government, said the vote marked the country’s first genuinely free poll in years.

“For the first time in recent years the elections are actually elections. Every citizen of Kyrgyzstan has been provided with the right to choose. Nobody is pressuring anyone, nobody is threatening anyone,” Mr Bakiyev said, after voting at a polling station near his Bishkek home.

Full preliminary results, as well as a verdict on the fairness of the poll from the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, were expected in the Kyrgyz capital Monday afternoon.

Voters said they hoped the poll would end the instability that has plagued this mountainous country of five million people since crowds of rock-throwing, stick-wielding youths chased Mr Akayev from office March 24.

Some voters and observers have expressed disappointment however at a lack of genuine competition in a vote seen as all but won by 55-year-old Mr Bakiyev, a former communist party functionary and Akayev-era prime minister.

The vote is being closely watched by the outside world as a potential landmark event, the first time any of the Central Asian former Soviet republics has had a change of leader, except during a bloody civil war in Tajikistan in the mid-1990s.

  • Posted on 10. January 2019
  • Written by admin
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