President charitable

MALABO - Equatorial Guinea President Teodoro Obiang Nguema says he is ready to pardon an exiled opponent sentenced in absentia to 62 years in prison over a failed coup attempt.

MALABO - Equatorial Guinea President Teodoro Obiang Nguema says he is ready to pardon an exiled opponent sentenced in absentia to 62 years in prison over a failed coup attempt.

Obiang said Severo Moto Nsa should return to the country to serve some of his sentence first.

"He must come and if he does even one week (in prison), I'll give him amnesty," Obiang said.

He was speaking in a television interview after a presidential election on Sunday that was likely to extend his 30-year grip on power.

Nguema won 96,7percent of the vote, according to provisional results yesterday of a poll criticised for falling short of democratic standards.

A 2004 coup attempt that would have installed Moto as president of the oil-rich west African state was foiled when dozens of mercenaries were arrested in Zimbabwe. - Sapa-AFP

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