Senegal: Set Poll Date or Constitutional Council May Have to Choose President - Sall

(file photo)
27 February 2024

President Macky Sall will consider asking the Constitutional Council to designate his successor, if the participants in the national dialogue do not find a consensus on the date of the presidential election, according to reports.

Sixteen of the 19 election candidates, whose files were declared admissible by the Constitutional Council, refused to participate in the national dialogue, while civil society organizations also abstained from taking part.

“If we find a consensus for the greater national interest, I will accept this decision […] Otherwise, I will ask the Constitutional Council to designate my successor ... on April 2,” said Sall at the end of the first day of the national talks.

Some participants, including the representative of the Catholic Church, Philippe Tine, proposed holding the presidential election before April 2. Others, candidates whose files were rejected by the Constitutional Council in particular, called for the resumption of the electoral process and, possibly, for the vote to take place after Sall's term as president ends.

Members of the government, representatives of political parties, local authorities, public administration, civil society organizations and workers' unions are taking part in the two-day dialogue. Sall organized the dialogue after interrupting the process which was to lead to the holding of the election on Sunday, February 25, 2024.

By canceling the decree summoning voters to the polls on that date, Sall opened the way to an unprecedented controversy concerning the presidential election in Senegal.

Note that it is in principle this Tuesday, February 27 that this political dialogue ends and “the conclusions will be implemented as quickly as possible”, the president said.

The Constitutional Council, in addition to having annulled a law passed by the National Assembly to postpone the election until December 15, asked the Head of State to organize the vote as quickly as possible.

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