The voting period for the elections was due to end today, the 13th April, but due to various problems, has been extended by two days.
Problems delivering ballots in the south meant that the National Electoral Commission (NEC) decided to “compensate the lost time” by prolonging the voting period, although in some areas, they will freeze the elections because of “logistical issues”. There have been also problems of voter registration, and the lengthy process of locating voters’ names on the electoral lists (photo, above) has also caused large queues at polling stations.
The Sudanese People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), the ruling party in the South, has called for an extension of four days, although some believe, particularly in the North, that those who intend to vote have done so already. Omer Mahmoud, a BBC correspondent in Khartoum, describes the voting mood in the capital as “lacklustre”, and quotes the head of one polling centre in Bahri saying that 85% people had cast their vote, most on the first two days.
In Darfur, James Copnall, the BBC correspondent for Sudan, finishes his piece on voting in Darfur by saying:
But the people most opposed to President Omar al-Bashir are the least likely to have voted.
— James Copnall, BBC Sudan correspondent
An extension to the voting period means a longer delay in the announcement of the results. Counting will commence on Friday, with final results scheduled for next Tuesday, the 20th April. This seems rather optimistic.
It looks like my stay in Khartoum, and Sudan, will be somewhat longer than expected…
» More photos: Sudanese Elections.