YAOUNDE, Oct 8 (Reuters) – Cameroon opposition candidate Maurice Kamto declared victory in Sunday’s presidential election, saying he had “achieved his goal” and calling on longstanding incumbent Paul Biya to hand over power peacefully.
“I invite the outgoing president to organise a peaceful way to transfer power,” Kamto, who leads the Movement for the Rebirth of Cameroon (MRC), told a news conference on Monday in the capital Yaounde.
The election was widely expected to extend the rule of Biya, one of Africa’s last multi-decade leaders who has held power for 36 years.
“My mission was to take a penalty. I did it and I scored,” Kamto said to chants of “freedom” by jubilant supporters in a courtyard outside. He offered no evidence to justify his claim to have won.
Minister of Territorial Administration Paul Atanga Nji said on Sunday that only the Constitutional Council would be allowed to announce results, and that any form of challenge to the verdict would “not be tolerated”.