Presidential elections were held in Benin on 4 March 2001, with a second round run-off on 18 March. They controversially resulted in the re-election of Mathieu Kérékou for a second term. Kérékou's rival Nicéphore Soglo, who had been president from 1991 to 1996, failed in his bid to reclaim the presidency; although he qualified to participate in the second round of the election against Kérékou, he refused to do so, alleging electoral fraud. Adrien Houngbédji, the parliament speaker and third-placed candidate, also refused to participate in a second round. As a result, Kérékou faced fourth-place candidate Bruno Amoussou, who was planning minister and had already given his support to Kérékou, in the second round; Kérékou won an easy victory with 84% of the vote.