Friday, August 17, 2007

Sierra Leone elections

The Sierra Leone election results were supposed to be declared today, but the count had only been half completed by yesterday evening. The ballot boxes have to be transported from polling stations around the country and checked for irregularities before their summaries are added to the totals. Yesterday the UN said they would offer the use of their helicopters to bring in the boxes from the most remote areas.

The votes counted for the three main candidates up to last night are given in the first column of the following table, and the projected final results in the second column:

Actual Projected

Koroma 400,081 835,195
Berewa 310,321 678,070
Margai 120,231 261,100

The calculation assumes that the votes cast for each candidate in the polling stations that remain to be counted are in the same proportion as those already logged.

On this assumption, Koroma will end up ahead, but will not reach the 55% threshold necessary to give him the Presidency on the first round. In a run-off, although Margai (son of former PM Sir Albert Margai) has leaned towards Koroma, his supporters may prefer Berewa for ethnic affinity reasons. It could be a tight finish.

PS Blogger does allow a link to a Google spreadsheet, so the detailed calculation is given above. This is a really useful facility, but it isn't easy to find on Blooger Help.

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