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Tuesday, 6 March, 2001, 08:39 GMT
New president for Cape Verde

Left wing candidate Pedro Pires has been declared the winner of last month's presidential elections in Cape Verde.

Mr Pires, a former prime minister, beat his rival, Carlos Veiga, by just 17 votes.

He will succeed Antonio Mascarenhas Monteiro, who has led Cape Verde since 1991.

The final result of the ballot had remained in doubt because both candidates launched appeals with the Supreme Court alleging vote irregularities.

The court could still decide that the vote must be repeated in several areas.

First round

The first round of voting, two weeks ago, was also tight.

Mr Pires and Mr Veiga have been the country's dominant political personalities since independence in 1975.

Pedro Pires
Pedro Pires: Party for the Independence of Cape Verde
Both men are former prime ministers.

Mr Pires, from the African Party for the Indpendence of Cape Verde, led the country from 1975 to 1990.

He lost the Cape Verde's first multi-party elections to Mr Veiga's Democracy Movement.

Mr Veiga led the country until last year introducing neo-liberal economic reforms.

The socialists returned to power following January's parliamentary elections, and the biggest issue in the election was whether the left should dominate Cape Verdian politics.

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See also:

16 Jan 01 | Africa
Opposition triumph in Cape Verde
10 Jan 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Cape Verde
10 Jan 01 | Africa
Timeline: Cape Verde
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