Africa News

Macky Sall have postponed the Feb. 25 presidential election, citing a dispute over the list of candidates

Senegal’s President Macky Sall on Saturday postponed presidential elections scheduled for February 25, citing controversy over the disqualification of some candidates and allegations of corruption in election cases.

President Macky Sall is not seeking another term, but the electoral body is set to begin campaigning in one of Africa’s most stable democracies in the face of a surge in coups in the region. He said he had signed a decree repealing the law that convened the electoral body.

Disputes over the candidates “could lay the groundwork for litigation before and after the election and could seriously undermine the credibility of the election,” Sall said, without announcing a new voting date.

He also said that some of the 20 candidates who were allowed to run were found to be dual nationals and would be disqualified under the Senegalese constitution.

The announcement comes as federal lawmakers are scheduled to consider a postponement bill at the request of the opposition Senegalese Democratic Party, whose candidate was disqualified from the election.

Critics of the postponement included former Prime Minister Aminata Touré, who described it as an “act of sabotage.”

“You have obstructed the process for a long time. “This is the first time that a presidential election has been postponed in Senegal,” Toure said.

The crucial vote was controversial, from a deadly clash that led to Mr Sall’s announcement that he would not seek a third term, to the disqualification of two opposition leaders by the highest electoral body.

Among those disqualified was Ousmane Sonko, who came third in the 2019 presidential election and is considered popular among young people. He claims there is a crackdown on rebels, a charge Sall’s government denies.

After the Constitutional Council announced its final list of candidates two weeks ago, federal lawmakers set up a commission to investigate two council judges accused of corruption. The charges were rejected by the Senegalese Judges Association, which called for respect for the separation of powers.

Macky Sall described the aftermath of the allegations as “a sufficiently serious and chaotic situation”, adding: “Our country cannot afford another crisis.”

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Macky Sall have postponed the Feb. 25 presidential election, citing a dispute over the list of candidates