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Reuters/Luc Gnago
Choose your leader.

Photos: Guinea’s second democratic election took place in old buses and petrol stations

By Lily Kuo

Millions of Guinean voters went to the polls this weekend to choose their next president, with some voters waiting in the rain for hours to cast their ballots in old buses and petrol stops turned into polling stations.

The election is Guinea’s second-ever democratic election since gaining independence in 1958. Results are expected on Thursday (Oct. 15) but many expect a victory for incumbent president Alpha Conde in a second round of voting scheduled for later in the year. Conde has been credited with lessening the military’s influence over the former military dictatorship as well as increasing electricity.

Reuters/Luc Gnago
A woman prepares to cast her vote in an old bus which is used as a polling station during a presidential election in Conakry, Guinea.

Election violence in the past has analysts worried about stability once the vote is announced. Leading opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo has made an appeal for peace. ”I call on citizens of all parties to accept differences of opinion and to respect the choice of each,” he said.

However, opposing political parties also threatened not to recognize the results if voting was not delayed to give time for more voters to receive registration cards. The Independent National Electoral Commission said on Saturday, the day before polls opened, that 7% of the voting population had not gotten their cards.

Security check points have been set up around the capital city of Conakry and soldiers are patrolling the streets. A dozen were killed last week as rival camps clashed over a court decision not to delay the vote, as requested by Diallo’s camp.

Here is how election day looked on Sunday (Oct. 11):

Reuters/Luc Gnago
People wait for the opening of the polling office at Hamdalaye neighbourhood during a presidential election in Conakry, Guinea October 11, 2015. REUTERS/Luc Gnago – RTS3XVP

 

People wait for the opening of the polling office in the Hamdalaye neighborhood.

Reuters/Luc Gnago
People wait for the opening of the polling office at Hamdalaye neighborhood during a presidential election in Conakry.
AP Photo/Youssouf Bah
Guinean Opposition presidential candidate Cellou Dalein Diallo, of the UFDG party, casts his vote in the Bambeto neighborhood of Conakry.
Reuters//Luc Gnago
Incumbent president Alpha Conde leaves a polling station in Conakry.
Reuters/Luc Gnago
A woman casts her vote at a petrol station in Conakry.
Reuters/Luc Gnago
A petrol station in Conakry is turned into a polling station.
Reuters/Luc Gnago
A bus is used as a polling station in Conakry, Guinea.
Reuters/Luc Gnago
A woman casts her vote in an old bus being used as a polling station.
AP Photo/Youssouf Bah
Guinean soldiers and civilians queue to cast their votes in Conakry.
AP Photo/Youssouf Bah
Electoral officials sort out ballot papers in Conakry.