Togolese await results from Saturday’s presidential election as the incumbent, President Faure Gnassingbe seeks to extend his tenure.
Counting of votes still continues with full results expected to be declared on Friday in an election, Gnassingbe is widely expected to win.
One of his contenders, Agbeyome Kodjo, a former prime minister and head of the national assembly, claimed there was “fraud” in the election.
Kodjo said the authorities used ballot stuffing, fake polling stations and people casting multiple votes to skew the results in the incumbent’s favour.
He said figures gathered from various polling stations showed he was in the lead in the capital Lome and the coastal region.
Kodjo told journalists at a press conference that “I have the conviction that in the coming week, I will lead this country.
“Considering the revelations of fraud which marked this ballot, it is impossible for the outgoing candidate to be elected in the first round.”
Prior to the election, over 500 local election observers were stopped from observing the election although some 300 international observers were deployed.
Those observers were mainly from the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) and the African Union.
53 year old Faure Gnassingbé took office in 2005 after the death of his father Eyadema Gnassingbé.
The president pushed through constitutional changes allowing him to stand again this year, and potentially stay in office until 2030.
The constitutional change caps the presidential mandate to two five-year terms, but does not take into account the three terms Gnassingbé has already served.
His family has been in power for the past fifty years and it doesn’t seem to be ending any time soon.