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Guinea’s Diallo Widens Lead After Three Days of Vote Counting

Guinea’s Cellou Dalein Diallo, a former prime minister of the West African nation, widened his lead after three days of counting ballots cast in the Nov. 7 presidential election.

Diallo had 59.6 percent of the votes counted in 15 of the country’s 38 electoral districts and 10 overseas embassies, according to Bloomberg calculations based on data provided by Pathe Dieng, a spokesman for the electoral commission, in Conakry today. Opposition leader Alpha Conde polled 40.4 percent.

The election is Guinea’s first democratic transfer of power since it won independence from France in 1958. It comes almost two years after the army seized power following the December 2008 death of President Lansana Conte, who ruled the world’s biggest bauxite exporter for 24 years.

“While this is one step in a long and complex process, a strong foundation is being laid for a sustainable democracy,” the Atlanta-based Carter Center’s election observation mission said in a statement published on its website yesterday.

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