Senegalese state television reports that President Abdoulaye Wade has conceded defeat in Sunday's presidential runoff election.
Supporters of opposition leader Macky Sall celebrated in the streets of Dakar Sunday, as unofficial results showed Mr. Sall leading by a wide margin in Senegal's presidential runoff election.
Senegalese state television reported that incumbent President Abdoulaye Wade telephoned Mr. Sall late Sunday to congratulate him, only three-and-a-half hours after polls closed in the West African country.
Sall Speaks to Media
Mr. Sall held a news conference late Sunday. He said the extent of this victory shows the immensity of the people's expectations, something he said he is taking to heart. Mr. Sall the vote marks a new era for Senegal. Together, he said, the people of Senegal will quickly get down to the work of recovery that is expected by each person and of each person.
President Wade was seeking a controversial third term in office. He was widely popular 12 years ago, when he was first elected. But electricity cuts, unemployment and a rising cost of living have since disenchanted many Senegalese.
Mr. Sall has pledged to reduce the price of basic food goods, decentralize power in the government and audit the finances of Mr. Wade's government.
At 85 years of age, Mr. Wade is Africa's second oldest leader. Mr. Sall is more than three decades his junior.
Mr. Sall is the president's former political protege. He served as mining minister, prime minister and president of the National Assembly before a falling out with Mr. Wade in late 2008.
Opposition Backed Sall
Senegal's opposition united behind Mr. Sall for the second round vote. Mr. Sall said he salutes his allies and supporters as well as those who voted for Mr. Wade. He said he will be the president of all Senegalese.
Despite deadly violence ahead of the first round of voting on February 26, Sunday's vote was calm.
Election observers from the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States said the poll was transparent and peaceful.
Mr. Sall said the maturity of the Senegalese voters is a source of pride. He said the great winner of this election is the Senegalese people.
Election observers say that the ballot reaffirms Senegal's place as one of Africa's most stable democracies.
The country's electoral commission is expected to announce official provisional results in a few days.