Seychelles holds presidential election amid pandemic economic gloom

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Victoria, Oct.22, 2020 (dpa/Naija247news) Voters in the Seychelles on Thursday began casting their ballots in a presidential election, amid economic woes due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Seychelles is an island nation known primarily as a honeymoon resort and an offshore tax haven.

Some 75,000 islanders have three main candidates to choose from incumbent Danny Faure, former tourism minister Alain St Ange, and opposition leader Wavel Ramkalawan, an Anglican priest who once punched a fellow parliamentarian after an argument.

Polling in the Indian Ocean archipelago off the East African coast takes place over three days, with the last day of voting on Saturday, when the results are expected to be announced.

All the candidates have been making promises on how they will lower the rising cost of living as prices skyrocket pandemic related job losses in the import dependent islands.

The Seychelles has had 149 cases of COVID-19 and no deaths so far but its tourism reliant economy has been badly affected by the pandemic.

The airport only re-opened to tourists on Aug.1 and only visitors from countries approved by health authorities were allowed in.

There is also a two week quarantine in place.

President Faure’s ruling party has been in power since the June 1977 coup.

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