Senegal: President Macky Sall Meets Disqualified Presidential Candidates

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
3 Min Read

On the evening of January 24th, the collective of disqualified candidates from the final list for the presidential election on February 25th, 2024, met with President Macky Sall at the presidential palace. The meeting provided an opportunity for the disqualified candidates to express their grievances regarding the electoral process.

After several hours of discussions, the collective of disqualified candidates emerged from the presidential palace late in the evening. Alioune Sarr, a former minister and candidate excluded from the list validated by the Constitutional Council, called for the reexamination of all candidacy files due to “serious shortcomings observed during the electoral process,” particularly in the scrutiny of endorsements, according to him.

He also took the opportunity to address the release of Bassirou Diomaye Faye, a candidate from the dissolved opposition party Pastef. As a Plan B following the rejection of the candidacy of Pastef’s leader, Ousmane Sonko, Faye has been in prison since April for a case that has not yet been brought to trial. “The election would be completely unbalanced if one of the candidates had to campaign from prison,” noted Alioune Sarr.

The case of Karim Wade was also discussed by the collective, which deems the rejection of his candidacy “unacceptable.”

Earlier in the day, members of the parliamentary group of the Senegalese Democratic Party submitted a request for the creation of an investigative commission regarding the process of eliminating candidates. The statement released on January 24 mentioned that the commission would focus on issues such as conflicts of interest, alleged corruption, blatant violations of the confidentiality of deliberations within the Constitutional Council, and collusion between certain council members and candidates.

Several opposition figures declined to participate in the meeting with the president, considering it too late, according to Bougane Gueye Dany, a disqualified candidate and businessman. Former Prime Minister Aminata Touré, who distanced herself from Macky Sall in September 2022, accusing him of attempting to exclude her from the presidential election, called for “respecting the official date of the presidential election” and urged for “opposition unity” to face the ruling party’s candidate, current Prime Minister Amadou Ba.

However, Alioune Sarr sought to reassure, stating that the issue of postponing the election was not raised by either the collective or the president.

Soukaina Sghir

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