Sunday, 10 September, will be a government holiday, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has declared. With the first round of the presidential elections set to take place on Saturday, 9 September, Solih made the decision in response to a request from the Elections Commission (EC), the President’s Office said.

As a significant number of civil service employees often serve as election officials, and with the vote count expected to continue late into the night on 9 September, the decision comes as no surprise.

Some private businesses and shops may also follow the government’s lead and be closed for business on 10 September – all state agencies, save for EC and support agencies, are expected to be closed.