Tunisia: Saied, Karoui set for 2nd round polls

TUNIS

Kais Saied and Nabil Karoui will face off in the second round of Tunisia’s presidential election, state election authorities said on Tuesday.

According to official results released by the Independent High Electoral Commission, Saied led with 18.4% of the vote while Nabil Karoui got 15.6%.

Abdelfattah Mourou of the Ennahda movement came in third with 12.88% of more than 434,000 votes cast, but did not qualify for the second round. 

Out of more than 7 million eligible to vote in the North African nation, some 3.46 million people cast ballots.

Appeals of the first-round results can be lodged on Wednesday and Thursday, while the second round is expected to be held no later than Oct. 13, according to the commission. 

The elections follow the death this July of Beji Caid Essebsi, Tunisia’s first freely elected president.

In Tunisia’s electoral system, a candidate is required to win a majority of votes to win the presidential ballot. If no candidate gets more than 50% in the first round, the two candidates with the most votes face off in a second, decisive round. 

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat
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