Security forces in the Republic of Congo cast their ballots Wednesday ahead of presidential elections in which veteran leader Denis Sassou Nguesso is frontrunner.
According to reports, a polling station opened in the southern city of Dolisie, where 1,203 soldiers, police and gendarmes were scheduled to vote, a civic duty in this country. Also called Congo-Brazzaville, the republic is an oil-rich but also poverty-stricken neighbor of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Sassou Nguesso, bidding for a fourth term, is a 77-year-old retired general who first ruled from 1979 to 1992 before returning at the end of a civil war in 1997. Henri Bouka, president of the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), said there were between 55,000 and 60,000 votes cast across the country.