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The Speaker of the Parliament of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS Parliament, Senator Ike Ekweremadu has commended ECOWAS and the people of Mali  for the success so far recorded in the Mali presidential election.

Reacting to the election result, Senator Ekweremadu who described the election as ?free, fair, and credible?, observed that the peaceful conduct of the poll was a boost for democracy and peace in Mali and the entire West Africa.

The Speaker said: ?The peaceful election in Mali justifies the huge human and material sacrifices made by ECOWAS and friends of the sub-region to ensure that peace and democracy are secured in the country.

?It is a clear testimony to the capacity of ECOWAS to resolve internal crises, defend and consolidate democracy in West Africa.

?ECOWAS Parliament is particularly proud of the government and people of Mali for the record turnout of voters and their peaceful and orderly conduct during the poll?

Senator Ekweremadu however warned against complacency as Mali prepares for the August 11, 2013 run-off election between the two leading candidates, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Soumaila Cisse.

?Though the job is already have done, it is not over yet as all stakeholders must work together and relentlessly to ensure a peaceful, free, fair, and credible conclusion of the presidential election?, he stressed.

It could be recalled that a clear winner could not emerge in the July 28 presidential election, the first since the 2012 military coup.

Although Keita, a former Prime Minister and Speaker of the West African nation garnered about 39.2 percent of the 3.1 million votes to lead the other 27 candidates, he fell short of the majority vote required to emerge as the President and will now face the second-finisher and former Finance Minister, Cisse, in a run-off. Cisse polled 19.4 percent of votes.

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