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Nigerian Presidential Candidate Mohamed Bazoum, his son and election campaign director Sani Issoufou arrive at a polling station to cast their votes on the second round of the presidential election in Niamey, Niger on February 21, 2021

Niger's Election Officials Killed During Voting in Presidential Elections

Niger has announced that seven senior election officials have been killed in a landmine blast during Niger's presidential election runoff.

Niger has announced that seven lives have been lost due to a landmine bomb during the country's presidential runoff. The seven individuals, who were members of Niger's electoral commission (CENI), reportedly drove over a landmine in the western region of Tillaberi. This took place during the second round of presidential elections this past Saturday following the December elections where presidential candidates, Mohamed Bazoum and former President Mahamane Ousmane, failed to get the majority vote.


Read: Niger's Presidential Election Plagued by Increasing Violence

According to Al Jazeera, the seven election officials were on their way to a polling station with ballot boxes when their car hit an explosive in Dargol. It is unclear whether the car was targeted as the region which borders Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali, is a known location for al-Qaeda groups that have a history of disturbing political activities, this according to News24. The vice president of the commission for the local branch, Harouna Mounkaila, confirmed their deaths and that three other workers had been injured.

Bazoum secured 40 percent of the vote in the first round and he is, according to the BBC, the anticipated presidential elect. Ousmane ruled as president between 1993 to 1996 and like previous former presidents, was ousted in a coup and is unlikely to be elected again. The outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou abstained from running in last year's elections and decided to step down after serving two consecutive five-year terms. The incoming president will be the first democratic president since Niger gained independence from France in 1960.

The presidential elections on the 27th Of December last year were also reportedly attacked by al-Qaeda in the regions of Tchombangou and Zaroumdareye, near the border with Mali.

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Photo by Ian Dickson/Redferns (via Getty Images)

New Fela Kuti Reissues & Box Set Are Coming This Year

Partisan Records has shared initial news of upcoming Fela 50th anniversary reissues and a new box set on the way.

Fela Kuti fans have a lot to look forward to this year as Partisan Records (home to Fela's catalog) has announced plans to release special reissues of two 1971 albums: London Scene and Live! With Ginger Baker, the classic album in which Fela and his band Africa '70 where joined by the Cream drummer.

The label has also said they plan to release the fifth installment in their ongoing Fela vinyl reissue box set series, which are handpicked by notable names in the music world. Previous volumes have been curated by Erykah Badu, Questlove, and Brian Eno.

Partisan has also shared that they will also be launching a scholarship program at Fela's alma mater, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, in London this year. The label will be sharing more information on all of that exciting Fela Kuti 2021 news soon, so keep and eye out.

In the meantime, Fela Kuti is currently leading the fan vote for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. You can head here to cast a daily ballot for the afrobeat legend. Voting is capped at one ballot per day.

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