Speculation over new pope rife on Benedict's last day
Thursday, February 28, 2013 - 01:05
Feb. 28 - Ghana's Cardinal Peter Turkson leads the bets to become new pope, according to one bookmaker. Sarah Sheffer reports.
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It's Pope Benedict's final day as pontiff of the Catholic Church.
Amid the Vatican buzz, Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana leads the way in bets on who will fill Benedict's shoes.
But Irish book-keeper Paddy Power says it's too soon to call.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) BOOK-KEEPER, PADDY POWER, SAYING:
"The favourite's changed a lot over the last couple of weeks since the pope announced his resignation but now it's kind of emerged, a kind of clear favourite, is Cardinal Turkson from Ghana. So according to the betting, there's a reasonable chance that we'll have our first ever black pope, 11/4 favourite, which is every so slightly favourite ahead of the two Italians, Bertone and Scola, they are both very big movers in the market"
Power said there had also been bets placed on a number of unlikely contenders, including Bono and atheist writer Richard Dawkins.
Once the chair of St. Peter is vacant on Thursday night, 115 eligible cardinals who have assembled from around the world will begin planning the conclave that will elect Benedict's successor.
They will hold a first meeting on Friday but a decision may not come until next week.
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