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credit: bbc

The president of Burkina Faso is set for a further term in office after winning a massive election victory, his campaign manager has told the BBC. Blaise Compaore was among 12 candidates standing in the presidential elections in the west African state this weekend. 

Salif Diallo estimates Mr Compaore took some 75% of the vote. Official results are not expected for another few days. Several opposition candidates have criticised the huge amount of money Mr Compaore spent on his campaign. 

They also feared the vote would be rigged. About 1,000 foreign observers were at the polls. One major opposition politician, Herman Yameogo, withdrew from the election because he was convinced they would not be fair. 

Burkina Faso is one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. 
Mr Diallo told the BBC Mr Compaore had won a massive victory, calling it an "electoral spanking". 
He claimed turnout was between 60% and 70%, although several international observers believe the figure is lower. 

'Civic duty' 

Queues formed peacefully as 12,000 polling stations opened for the four million registered voters on Sunday. 
The winner will be elected for five years. If no candidate gains an outright majority, the top two must fight a second round. Two recent opinion polls suggested 60% of voters intended to back Mr Compaore. 
Voter-education campaigns urged everyone to vote, calling it a civic duty. 

Mr Compaore was the only candidate in the 1991 elections and most of the major opposition figures did not run in 1998. 

The Constitutional Court allowed the president to run for office again, even though an amendment to the constitution made in 2000 limits each head of state to two terms of office. 

The opposition candidates have attacked Burkina Faso's alleged involvement in several wars in the region, and say they will cut down on corruption. 

However, his supporters argue that his real advantage is that the opposition is so divided.


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