NOUAKCHOTT, Mauritania (AP) — Mauritania’s electoral commission has declared that the candidate backed by the outgoing president has won the country’s weekend election.
The winner of the presidential race is Mohamed Ould Ghazouani, a retired general who served as Mauritania’s defense minister before being chosen as the chosen successor to retiring President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz.
The electoral commission announced late Sunday Ghazouani received 52 percent of the vote. Biram Dah Abied, a human rights activist who has campaigned against slavery in the West African nation, received nearly 19 percent.
The election will pave the way for the first peaceful handover of power since Mauritania’s independence from France nearly 60 years ago, although the election’s outcome was widely predicted.
Aziz was barred from seeking a third term under Mauritania’s constitution.