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THE WEEK AHEAD

ABIDJAN : An African First

October 23, 1990

A milestone in African democracy could be reached during presidential elections Sunday in Ivory Coast.

The nearly 90-year-old Felix Houphouet-Boigny, the West African country's only president in 30 years of independence, will face his first independent challenger ever, 45-year-old history professor Laurent Gbagbo.

The challenger is a decided underdog, in part because he has been denied adequate access to the government-owned media. Beyond that, however, observers say Gbagbo's campaign has been largely undisturbed by government interference.

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