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Ben Ali reelected with 89 per cent

Article published on the 2009-10-26 Latest update 2009-10-26 11:27 TU

Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.(Photo: AFP)

Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.
(Photo: AFP)

Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali was re-elected with 89.62 per cent of the vote in Sunday's elections. Final results released Monday by the Interior Ministry bring him into a fifth term in office after two decades in power.

The results from all of the north African country's 26 constituencies showed Ben Ali's score ranging from 84.16 to 93.88 per cent of the vote. But he did even better among overseas voters who gave him a whopping 94.85 per cent.

Ben Ali's little-known rivals trailed far behind, with two candidates close to the government, Mohamed Bouchiha and Ahmed Inoubli, getting around five and 3.8 per cent respectively.

The only candidate who openly opposed the incumbent, Ahmed Brahim, came in last with 1.57 per cent of the vote. Brahim expressed his surprise that Ben Ali’s score was not above 90 per cent, as “habitually astronomical” as it has been in the past.

In the parliamentary election, Ben Ali's Constitutional Democratic Rally (RCD) party won 161 of the 214 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, with the remaining 53 to be divided proportionally between six of the eight competing parties.

Ben Ali, 73, ousted Tunisia's first elected president since independence from France, Habib Bourguiba, for senility in 1987. At every vote since then, his opponents have cried fraud over the scale of Ben Ali's win.

In the last elections in 2004, Ben Ali was returned to office with 94.4 per cent of the vote, while his RCD won an overwhelming majority in parliament.