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Vol 42 No 18

Published 14th September 2001


Seychelles

By a whisker

President René's narrow victory showed that change is in the air

Three thousand more votes for the priest and it would have been curtains for 'the Boss'. Yet after 24 years of paternalistic socialism, plus lucrative capitalism for some, President France-Albert René, at 65, can relax for a while. Almost half of the country's 50,000 voters did not want him back in State House - 23,015 of them, to be precise - giving the opposition 45 per cent of the vote in the presidential poll on 31 August-2 September. Many, including René's leading rival, the Anglican minister Wavel Ramkalawan, believe he cheated and plan to challenge the result in the Constitutional Court.

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