Senegal’s ruling coalition party has lost an absolute majority in the national assembly, according to official provisional results released Thursday by the electoral commission.
Provisional results from Sunday’s vote showed President Macky Sall’s Benno Bokk Yakaar (BBY) coalition won 82 out of 165 seats, one short of the 83 required for an absolute majority, while the alliance of opposition coalitions Yewwi Askane Wi (YAW) and the Wallu Senegal won 80.
“I salute the Senegalese people … for the exemplary nature of our democracy and the credibility of our electoral system,” Sall said on Twitter after the results were released.
The two main opposition forces, Yewwi Askan Wi (Liberate the People) and Wallu Senegal (Save Senegal) obtained 56 seats and 24 seats respectively, according to the results. The other three seats are shared between the three other coalitions. This is the first time that the opposition has won so many seats in the National Assembly.
Aly Ba, the president of the Court of Appeals of Dakar and President of the National Vote Counting Commission read the results Thursday. Parties can appeal to the Constitutional Council which will release final results by the end of next week.
Election officials said 47 percent of the more than 7 million registered voters took part in the election.
The results come hours after the Senegalese opposition demanded the suspension of the publication of the results of the legislative elections of July 31. On Sunday, the ruling party had said they were going to hold a majority.
Story compiled with assistance from wire reports