Senegal will hold its next presidential election as soon as possible after the Constitutional Council’s decision.

The decision ruled out delaying President Macki’s February 25 election, raising fears of authoritarian creep into one of Africa’s most stable democracies.

Cell reportedly plans to cooperate with the order.

Senegal will hold a Presidential elections The government said on Friday that the country’s top electoral authority has rejected President Mackay Sall’s order to postpone the vote.

An attempt was made earlier in the year to postpone the February 25 election, citing unresolved disputes over who could participate, and the National Assembly to reschedule it for December 15. Voted for.

However, the country’s Constitutional Council ruled on Thursday that the measures were unconstitutional and ordered the government to hold elections as soon as possible, possibly giving enough time for campaigning. The panel acknowledged that February 25 may no longer be possible, but said the government must act quickly.

3, including a teenager, were killed by security forces because of anger over Senegal’s election protests

In a statement on Friday, presidential spokesman Yoro Diya said Sal intended to ensure full compliance with the council’s decision and hold elections as soon as possible, although the government did not yet specify a new date.

Senegal is seen as one of them. of the region The most stable of democracies, but electoral disputes have plunged the country into a political crisis that has sparked deadly protests and cuts to mobile internet. At least three people have been killed and dozens injured in the firing by the security forces.

Macy Sall, President of Senegal at the United Nations General Assembly

Senegalese President Macky Sall addresses the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the United Nations headquarters on Tuesday, September 19, 2023. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Sale has been accused of trying to delay leaving office, which he denied during an AP interview last week.

Local and international pressure has increased since the move to delay voting.

In a post on Friday At X, Twitter firstthe US Bureau of African Affairs praised the council’s decision to “put Senegal back on track for timely presidential elections”.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres noted the Constitutional Council’s decision and the president’s decision and urged all Senegalese parties to “ensure the holding of an inclusive and transparent presidential election within the framework of the Senegalese constitution.” UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.

Also on Friday, the West African bloc, ECOWAS, said in a statement on Friday that Sall should stick to the election timetable, and called on “competent authorities” to set a presidential election date in line with the council’s decision. do

It is unclear when the date will be set, and whether there will be changes to who is allowed to run.

Sal, who came to power in 2012, is set to complete his two terms on April 2. According to the constitution, elections have to be held 30 to 45 days before their mandate ends.

In an effort to calm the public, the government released several hundred political prisoners this week.

A member of the disbanded PASTEF opposition party, Dr Menal Fall, said the opposition has said it would resolve the situation by releasing all prisoners and opening talks between the opposition and the president on setting an early date for elections. can be terminated.

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