The United States commends the people of Equatorial Guinea who exercised their right to vote on November 20. We note, however, that international election observers, civil society groups, and opposition parties have made credible allegations of significant election-related irregularities, including documented instances of fraud, intimidation, and coercion. These allegations include restrictions on the ability of representatives of political parties to access polling stations, repeat voting, pre-filling of Democratic Party of Equatorial Guinea (PDGE) ballots, non-secret voting booths, and heavily armed soldiers within 20 meters of voting booths. We are also concerned by irregular counting practices that favor the party in power, including the counting of unopened ballots in favor of the PDGE and the counting of ballots without all political parties represented. These irregularities would violate Equatoguinean law. Given the scale of irregularities observed and the announced results giving the PDGE 94.9% of the vote, we have serious doubts about the credibility of the announced results.
Elections are an opportunity for a government and political parties to tangibly demonstrate their commitment to democratic principles. We urge Equatoguinean authorities to work with all stakeholders – including the full spectrum of political organizations and non-partisan civil society organizations – to fully address these credible allegations of voter fraud and to take steps to permit the expression of diverse political perspectives.