Benin votes, with just one choice | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 29, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:06 AM, April 29, 2019

Benin votes, with just one choice

The people of Benin yesterday voted for a new parliament but without a single opposition candidate to choose from, as rights groups warn of a crackdown in a country once seen as a model for democracy. When polls opened at 7:00am (0600 GMT), voters in the small West African state were given the choice to select their 83 members of parliament from two parties both allied to President Patrice Talon. In the run up to polling, protests have been broken up by force. Late on Saturday, some roads were blocked by angry demonstrators in opposition areas. Internet access was tightly restricted with blocks on the main social media and messaging apps. Five million people are registered to vote, but on Sunday morning, turnout was slow at voting booths in the economic capital Cotonou.The main opposition parties, unable to field candidates, have asked their supporters to boycott the polls.

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