Senegal Awaits as Assembly Debates Postponement of Presidential Election

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
2 Min Read
Senegal

As mobile internet services are now suspended in Senegal and law enforcement disperses attempts at gatherings outside the National Assembly, the Assembly in Dakar is set to examine a proposed law on the six-month postponement of the presidential election on February 5, 2024. This comes after President Macky Sall announced an indefinite delay on February 3rd.

Senegal is holding its breath

Two days after President Macky Sall’s announcement of postponing the presidential election without a new date, the National Assembly is set to examine a proposed law on February 5th, 2024, to delay the vote.

The plenary session has already been briefly suspended due to opposition deputies requesting to introduce a preliminary question, which was denied to them.

About twenty parliamentarians immediately stood up, brandishing the National Assembly’s internal regulations, and shouting about injustice, indicating the tense atmosphere prevailing there.

The opposition strongly opposes this proposed law, which de facto extends Macky Sall’s mandate, as he has been president since 2012.

The text, to be debated on Monday, contains two crucial articles: an exception to the Constitution that would postpone the election by 6 months, until August 25, and a second article that requests Macky Sall to continue his duties as president until the installation of his successor.

The crux of the matter lies here: the date of April 2 as the deadline for the end of the president’s term is not mentioned in this proposed law, opening the possibility of postponing the election for much more than 6 months and allowing President Macky Sall to remain in power well beyond his mandate.

The debates are likely to be particularly intense within the chamber, even though the text is likely to be adopted. With the support of the Senegalese Democratic Party (PDS) of Karim Wade and the ruling coalition, they have the necessary quorum.

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