Holding African Presidents to Term Limits Will Build Peace

Community and political leaders gathered in Niger in October to address one of the most pressing challenges to peaceful, democratic progress across Africa - erosion of the rule of law by extending and amending presidential term limits. Panelists shared experiences, presented case studies of successes and discussed how to overcome the challenges they confront. AllAfrica's Michael Tantoh reports from a conference in Niamey, the capital, where President Mahamadou Issoufou sayid his greatest legacy will be abiding by constitutional term limits.

Members of Parliament fight in the Parliament chambers during the last constitutional amendment that sought to remove the presidential age limit in 2017. Two years later Uganda's Supreme Court upheld a constitutional court ruling in 2018 that stated Museveni — elected for the fourth time in 2016 — could run.

On May 17, 2018, Burundians overwhelmingly voted for constitutional changes that could potentially see President Pierre Nkurunziza stay in office until 2034. The opposition claimed the vote was marred by intimidation and fraud. In 2015, protests erupted as Nkurunziza announced that he would run for a controversial third term. According to UN reports, at least 1,200 people died during the unrest.

Photo: Fasozine

More than a million people marched to stop President Blaise Compaore from changing the constitution of Burkina Faso to run for a third term in 2015.

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