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Alassane Ouattara

Alassane Ouattara has won a second five-year term as Ivory Coast’s president with nearly 84% of the vote, electoral commission officials say.

He won a total of 2,118,229 votes, or 83.66% of votes cast, the commission said. Turnout was 54.63%.

Several opposition candidates pulled out of the campaign, complaining that it was not free and fair.

The last vote in 2010 was bitterly contested and resulted in a civil war in which 3,000 people lost their lives.Alassane Ouattara Wins Ivory Coast elections

Alassane Ouattara required more than 50% of the vote to avoid a run-off. His closest opposition rival, Pascal Affi N’Guessan, got just 9%.

In the 2010 vote, Alassane Ouattara defeated then-President Laurent Gbagbo, whose refusal to step down triggered months of violence in which thousands of people were killed.

Alassane Ouattara’s campaign this year centered around his economic program. Critics accused him of failing to foster reconciliation or reduce poverty.

The 54% turnout in Ivory Coast’s election was down from the 2010 first-round turnout of about 80%.

Ivory Coast is holding the first presidential election since the civil war ended in 2011.

The bitterly contested presidential election has been marred by prominent opposition candidates pulling out, citing widespread irregularities.

Ivory Coast’s incumbent President Alassane Ouattara is running for a second term in the world’s largest cocoa producer.

Some 3,000 people were killed in the conflict which ended with Alassane Ouattara coming to power in 2011.

Photo Getty Images

Photo Getty Images

The conflict broke out after former President Laurent Gbagbo refused to accept Alassane Ouattara’s victory in the 2010 election.

Laurent Gbagbo was subsequently arrested and is due to stand trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC), where he denies war crimes charges.

Three of the 10 opposition candidates, including former PM Charles Konan Banny, have withdrawn from the election.

They allege that the process has been rigged to guarantee victory for Alassane Ouattara, a former International Monetary Fund (IMF) economist.

Alassane Ouattara denies the charge, and has called on people to turn out in massive numbers.

Memories of the conflict are still fresh in people’s minds, especially in strongholds of Laurent Gbagbo, correspondents say.