Veteran Guinea opposition leader to challenge President Conde in October election

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Cellou Dalein Diallo, opposition presidential candidate, speaks during a news conference in Conakry, Guinea, on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015. With 43 percent of its population of 12 million people living on less than $1.25 a day, Guinea ranks as the ninth least developed country globally, according to United Nations data. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Cellou Dalein Diallo, opposition presidential candidate, speaks during a news conference in Conakry, Guinea, on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015. With 43 percent of its population of 12 million people living on less than $1.25 a day, Guinea ranks as the ninth least developed country globally, according to United Nations data. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Guinea’s veteran opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo was picked on Sunday by his UFDG party to challenge President Alpha Conde, who is seeking a third term in the Oct. 18 presidential election despite protests from the opposition.

Conde, 82, who defeated Diallo in a runoff in 2010, and won in the first round of the 2015 presidential election, pushed through a constitution amendment in a referendum in March that lifted a term-limit, allowing him to run again.

A UFDG party executive Abdoulaye Diouma Diallo said the party’s national council had selected Dalein Diallo as their flag-bearer for the presidential election.

Dalein Diallo, whose UFDG party had joined forces with other opposition parties to lead protests against the constitutional change, had previously said he did not recognize the new constitution.

The 69-year old Dalein Diallo, is expected to be Conde’s toughest challenger after another opposition leader, Sidya Toure, who came third in the 2010 and 2015 elections, said he would not participate this year.

Dalein Diallo, 69, was prime minister under ex-President Lansana Conte from 2004 to 2006.

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