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WINDHOEK - Four Namibian opposition parties, including the main challenger to the ruling Swapo, complained yesterday of voting irregularities in the country's two-day presidential and parliamentary elections.
First results were expected to be known about midday, with President Hifikepunye Pohamba and his South West Africa People's Organisation (Swapo) forecast to win another five-year term.
The opposition Rally for Democracy and Progress (RDP), expected to become the official opposition, said some ballot papers lacked an identification stamp, making them invalid, and the ink identifying voters was removable in some cases.
"There are a lot of people who have been deprived of their right to cast their votes by the recklessness of the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN)," Jesaya Nyamu, RDP general secretary, told Reuters.
Three other parties, the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance, Republican Party of Namibia and South West Africa National Union also raised concerns about irregularities and Swapo's youth league asked the ECN to investigate.
"The process is going to be credible because there are observers here but the irregularities still have to be addressed," youth league leader Elijah Ngurare told Reuters.
The electoral commission was meeting to discuss the matter yesterday.
"The politics are over. Let's count the votes now," ECN director Moses Ndjarakana said.
Counting began after the more than 3000 polls closed on Saturday but the ECN said final results might not be available until Wednesday. About 1,18 million people were registered to vote.
Lying between economic powerhouse South Africa and oil-producing Angola, resource-rich Namibia has enjoyed a long period of political and economic prosperity that has made its 2,2 million people the envy of many in Africa. - Reuters