Opposition candidate, Jorge Carlos Fonseca, has won Cape Verde's presidential elections, beating his ruling party rival, Manuel Inocencio Sousa. Mr. Fonseca secured nearly 55% of the vote in run-off elections on Sunday, compared with Mr. Sousa's 45%. The two leaders contested the poll after President Pedro Pires stepped down at the end of his two terms.
Mr. Fonseca, 60, said he would focus on building Cape Verde's economy. "My victory is one for democracy, for the dignity of the Cape Verdean people who believed in my plans," he is quoted as saying by the AFP news agency.
Mr. Fonseca was the candidate of the opposition Movement for Democracy (MFD) party, while Mr. Sousa was the flag bearer of the ruling African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde (PAIVC). The two parties have dominated politics since Cape Verde, a former Portuguese colony, became independent in 1975.
Cape Verde, unlike many African nations, has one of the most stable democracies on the continent. Due to growing tourism, the nations economy has steadily grown and has been classified by the United Nations as a middle-income nation.
Cape Verde is a stable representative Parliamentary republic. The constitution —adopted in 1980 and revised in 1992, 1995 and 1999— defines the basic principles of its government. The president is the head of state and is elected by popular vote for a 5-year term. Cape Verde is often praised as an example among African nations, for its stability and developmental growth despite its lack of natural resources.